Pirate Cinema - YA Review by Ellen P

Reader: Ellen P.
Age: 16
Title: Pirate Cinema
Author: Cory Doctorow
Publisher: Tom Doherty
Pub Date: 10/02/12
Galley: No
Top 25: Yes
Convince us to read the book: I've read a couple of Doctorow's books before this one, and it seems to fit his mold- it deals with current issues for teens, but is set in the future, it includes a lot of techy language, the characters are cool, and emotional development takes a backseat to the overarching plot. Which is, of course, challenging the government. I am totally okay with that. Pirate Cinema is a great book in the sense that you don't feel lost if you don't understand the details of what is happening (but you can learn a lot if you're interested) and you get a sense of empowerment. Unless you're lived under a rock for a few years, you probably heard about SOPA, and the numerous bills limiting internet freedom following it. This book deals with the disastrous consequences of those bills and more passing in which activity on the internet is suspended for trivial offenses. The teens in the book are all strong intelligent characters who take on the whole of British government without too much help. They're awesome.
Memorable or Forgettable:  This book kept me interested through the high stakes that all the characters faced in protecting their safety and rights. Doctorow makes the premise believable and frightening, and the writing is smart. However, if you're hoping for a romance or deep friendship novel, this isn't for you.
Cover: The cover in my opinion is great for this book. The bright colors and bold font draw you in, while the shadowy figure in the background creates mystery and interest. The cover led me to pick up the book and was extremely appealing.
Age Range: 14 through 18 and up
Quality: 5Q Hard to imagine a better book
Popularity: 4P Broad general teen appeal
Annotation: Trent McCauley is sixteen, brilliant, and obsessed with one thing: making movies on his computer by reassembling footage from popular films he downloads from the net. In near-future Britain, this is more illegal than ever. The punishment for being caught three times is to cut off your entire household from the internet for a year - no work, school, health or money benefits.

tags: dystopian / coming of age / intellectual property / ya lit

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