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Tuesday, June 11, 2013

The Testing Game

Young adult novel explores a dystopian future

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In a bleak world ravaged by war and natural disaster, it’s up to the next generation of young leaders to piece society back together. The Testing, the first novel in a new young adult trilogy by author Joelle Charbonneau, is set in a future post-apocalyptic civilization formally known as the United States of America. Fans of dystopian novels like The Hunger Games and Divergent will find The Testing to be a chilling, fast-paced adventure as young people struggle to survive in a dark future. Amidst the barren landscape of the Five Lakes Colony (the former Great Lakes region), 16-year-old Cia desperately hopes to be selected for the “testing,” a young person’s one chance to go on to university and a rewarding career. The stakes are high—life and death—and once Cia is selected, along with her childhood friend Tomas, she begins to learn that there is a darker side to her upcoming studies. As she prepares to leave home, Cia’s father, a former participant in the testing himself, hints that she must trust no one at all, a cryptic warning Cia soon finds to be all too true.

Author Joelle Charbonneau began as an opera singer. A graduate of both Millikin and DePaul University, Charbonneau spent years performing in the Chicago area in operas, operettas and musicals. She continues to teach voice lessons but now spends the majority of her time writing new stories. Charbonneau will speak at Books & Co. in Oconomowoc at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, June 18.

 

Book Happenings

Dean Jensen

7 p.m., June 13

Boswell Book Co.

2559 N. Downer Ave.

Dean Jensen is still best known around town as the owner of a Downtown art gallery, but in recent years he has developed a career as a successful author. His latest book, Queen of the Air: A True Story of Love and Tragedy at the Circus, brings to life the circus subculture of the early 20th century through one of the era’s star performers, known simply as Leitzel.

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