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Empty - Suzanne Weyn Read this review at Smash Attack Reads! http://www.smashattackreads.com/2012/01/empty-bleak-yet-inspiring-look-into.htmlInterest in the book: Any time the new Scholastic catalog is released, I jump at the chance to read any of their titles that have a dystopian or post-apocalyptic setting. I especially loved the idea of Empty, as it poses some really good questions on how the heck life would go on without fossil fuels. Society relies so much on these nonrenewable resources, and it’s downright scary to think about what life would be like if we run out. The author gives us a bleak yet inspiring look into a possible future.Characters: Most of the characters in this book were fairly simple in terms of characterization. There are multiple points of view in this story, and I appreciated that all the kids remained optimistic, as kids tend to do. I will say that I loved Tom the most. He surprised me a few times and I enjoyed being in side of his head. Connection to the characters was minimal, and while that is highly important in most stories, the world building was the true gem of this story.Worldbuilding: As usual, this was my favorite part of this book. The author has presented us with a world the likes of which we hope to never see. Oil is quickly drying up, countries are fighting over the last drops. One gallon of gas is nearing $100. Businesses of all types and sizes are closing down because they cannot afford to remain open. I was horrified by how much we really do rely on oil. It is used in the production of just about everything. We all have read or witnessed what occurs when people panic, and the “every man for himself” mentality is clearly at play in this book. Seeing people in this light is seriously depressing and scary.Lasting Impressions: What I love most about this book and what it represents is knowledge. I really adore the author for bringing such serious issues to the attention of the younger generations, who tend to be a little to comfortable inside their technology bubbles these days. Most of the children and adolescents I work with are completely clueless on world issues. A lot of this falls on the parents, who are also content inside their bubbles, but hopefully books like these will offer some insight. My entire life’s purpose was drastically changed because of a movie (based on a true even), and we all know books are way more inspiring. :)Smashtastic Entertainment Scale: Enjoyable and Important