Sunday, April 28, 2019

Book review - Treasure; Seed Savers #1 by Sandra Smith

I am finding this series enthralling. As a child this is something that would have appealed to me. As adults reading children's books we tend to forget the lure of adventure seen through a child's eyes.

Treasure; Seed Savers series #1; is a dystopian novel set in America in the not-too-distant future; mid-to-late 21st century (references to historical events within the story have led me to this conclusion). Food comes in pre-packaged forms. It arrives at Stores by Delivery Truck, and is referred to as Protein, Sweeties, Vitees, Carbos, and Snacks. The majority of people do not have refrigerator's because their food is GMO produced and full of preservatives; no need to worry about shelf life. "The old way of growing, selling, and preserving food was inefficient and cumbersome...It wasn't economical, practical, or safe." GRIM (Green Resource Investigation Machine) is a government agency which keeps track of subversive elements working against official food policy's. These subversive groups are made up of anarchists, environmentalists, and seed savers.

Clare first hears of "seeds" in church, and soon she, her brother Dante, and best friend Lily are being tutored by Ana, an elderly seed saver. Seed Savers are an underground group dedicated to saving and preserving non-GMO seeds for food growth. At first Clare is captivated by the adventure and mystery of something so unusual as food that does not come from round or square pre-packaged containers, but she quickly decides that seed saving is worth the risk. Then her mother is jailed and Clare and her brother run away, rather than reveling the true identity of their friend Ana. Clare and Dante travel by night, trying to stay out of sight from their pursuer, a man from GRIM. Along the way they learn how to seek out other Seed Saver's, as well as facing hunger, rain, and a harrowing escape within city limits. There is safety to be found north, in Canada. Will Clare and Dante make it across the border on their own?

This book is so appealing in all aspects for a child. As an adult reading it we might question the choices Clare, Dante, and Lily make, but a child will see the adventure and understand the children's quest. A cautionary tale, too; this is the story of what could easily be on the road to happening here in America. I will be purchasing this for my school library - thank you to author Sandra Smith for the advance copy!

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