Book: Game Changer
Author: Neil Shusterman
This is my 23rd read for the year
This is the story of Ash. A high school football player to one Friday night game takes a very hard hit on the football field. The next thing he knows, the world he knew looks completely different. Stops Signs are now Blue. He lives in better neighborhood. His friendships have changed. Small changes roll into bigger changes the more hits he takes at his games leaving him trying to figure out how he will get back to the world he knew. However - along the way, he has a chance to look at life through difference lenses that will leave him forever changed.
I want to say first - I am a huge Shusterman fan. Dystopian Future/Alternate worlds: this is my favorite genre. And "Scythe" and "Unwind" series that Shusterman wrote are among my favorite books in that genre. This Shusterman novel was a disappointment to me. I was so looking forward to it because "Scythe" was amazing. The underlying story that the author was trying to tell was a clever concept. Jumping around in different dimensions, developing memories of the person you are in that world, yet holding onto the memories from previous worlds is intriguing. But that wasn't the central theme of this book. Instead Shusterman uses this as a soap box platform to talk about every issues that plagues us in 2021. And while I whole heartedly agree that it needs to be discussed and be brought to the front of our minds daily - he over did it. The story of the different worlds fell second to the point of almost non-existent.
Look - I am loving that most books I read these days bring forward issues of racism, and LGBTQ characters are becoming a norm. I applaud it whole heartedly. This book just missed the mark. When you lose the story because you think your 17 year old character would be this aware, then you lose me. I see what he was trying to do - he just tried too hard and lost his way.