Empty by Suzanne Weyn
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Release Date: October 1, 2010
A dystopic look at what happens to one American town when all the fossil fuels run out... It's the near future - the very near future - and the fossil fuels are running out. No gas. No oil. Which means no driving. No heat. Supermarkets are empty. Malls have shut down. Life has just become more local than we ever knew it could be. Nobody expected the end to come this fast. And in the small town of Spring Valley, decisions that once seemed easy are quickly becoming matters of life and death. There is hope - there has to be hope - just there are also sacrifices that need to be made, and a whole society that needs to be rethought.
This book had a lot of potential. I'm a huge fan of disaster and dystopian novels. I really enjoyed the premise of the book, where the world's oil is depleting. Supermarkets are unable to get their food deliveries, oil prices sky rocket, etc. However, this book just did not live up to its potential.
The book centres around Gwen Jones, a teenage girl who only has her older brother left. They don't necessarily get along, but he is all the family she has left.
Overall, I was disappointed with the book. I felt that it focused too much on juvenile love triangles and not enough on the plot. I didn't feel that the book was a realistic take on the situation. The novel ended up glossing over the negatives, and it didn't seem like a plausible disaster novel. When the world is going to shit I would think that there would be more panic and hysteria.
The ending wrapped everything up a little too neatly. I love a good happily ever after, but as this was a fairly short novel and not a series, it seemed too tidy. If the world's oil were too suddenly stop I don't believe everything will go from slight uncomfort to oh look what I found a perfect solution for the world just sitting here! One of the only realistic scenarios in the novel was the fighting between the countries that had any amount of oil left.