Review – “Slated” by Teri Terry


Slated UK Cover

Title: Slated

Author: Teri Terry (Cool name!)

Publisher: Orchard

There’s a lot of dystopian young-adult fiction around right now and some of it is really worth reading. Gone are the days when teens or people who like YA books were relegated to reading novels that were too young or too old. The market has been flooded with these types of books, and honestly? I love it. I found the Slated trilogy completely by chance in a second-hand bookshop in a little town near me. The first two books, Slated and Fractured were in perfect condition and at a bargain price, so I snapped them up without even really bothering to read the back. The cover image, and a vague memory of reading a review somewhere, were enough for me to part with my hard-won cash.

The first book in the trilogy, Slated, introduces us to Kyla, a recently Slated sixteen-year-old who is beginning her new life. This is her second chance. According to the government, she was a criminal in her past life, offered the chance to start again in return for having her previous memories completely wiped. She is a clean slate, hence the title of the novel. Kyla is not like other Slated, who are happy to exist, happy with everything. She likes to ask too many questions.

Asking questions is a dangerous game in mid-21st Century Britain. The government is ruled by the Lorders, the harsh totalitarian regime that took over in the aftermath of riots in the ’20s. Asking questions or saying the wrong thing can make you disappear. Remembering things you shouldn’t can get you hauled off in a black van, never to be seen again. And Kyla’s memories are breaking through, bit by bit…

I read this book in one sitting. It’s not a skinny book either. A good 400+ pages if I remember correctly. It got until stupidly late in the early morning and I had an early train to catch. The writing sucks you in and pulls you along for the ride whether you are prepared for it or not. Kyla is a likeable character, especially later on, when you learn a little more about her past and she becomes more than a slightly-vacant Slated newbie. The idea of Britain becoming this in the future creeped the hell out of me, as I can almost foresee the events that would lead to it. The 20’s riots reminded me sharply of the London riots of 2012.

I’m supposed to say something I dislike about this book. I swallowed it up so quickly that I really had to rack my brains for something and I’ve come up with the weakest criticism ever: the book didn’t answer enough of my questions. Why the hell does Kyla draw with her left hand when she is right-handed? What happens to a Slated if they do not fulfill their contract? What the hell is up with Kyla’s dad? And you know what? These questions will (hopefully) be answered in the next two books. That’s my criticism. The author made me desperate to read the rest. Boo, Teri Terry. For shame. (Sarcasm).

Finally, do I recommend this book? Hell, yes I do! Get it, read it, review it and thank me (or better yet the author) later. It has fascinating insights into the possible future of Britain, which gives me the chills because that is where I live. I can easily see parallels between the fictional riots and the riots in London from two years ago. Maybe “dystopian” is the wrong genre for Slated. “Speculative” might be the better word. I can definitely draw some parallels between this and Children of Men and V for Vendetta, so fans of those would likely enjoy this book. This world Teri Terry has created is frighteningly possible. I’ll be reading the rest of the trilogy in the next week or two and I can’t bloody wait.

Jemma x


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