Three very different teens on the edge of death get firsthand experience of the Many-Worlds Interpretation of quantum mechanics.
Sophie is dying of lymphoma in a California hospice. Declan is about to be shot as a thief in Galway City. Anat is trapped in a tunnel collapse in the Gaza Strip....The next moment they awaken in a closed ward of what appears to be a hospital. Meeting up with Swiss Nico, Zain from India and Yosh from Japan, none trusts the others, but they have to work together since they’ve no food. When they do manage an escape, the world they find outside is a nightmare. It seems vaguely familiar to Nico, whose father works as a physicist on Long Island, but the buildings are weathered, and mature trees crack the pavements. The place is deserted except for violent, frightening beasts. Finding out what happened takes a back seat to survival. Gagnon’s second for teens (Don’t Turn Around, 2012) riffs on the notion that a supercollider will spawn mini–black holes and plays fast and loose with the laws of physics, but readers won’t mind. Interesting characters, some of whom have dangerous secrets, act and react like real teens. The slow reveal of what’s going on is as tantalizing as the action is pulse-pounding.
Takes some suspension of disbelief (especially for science lovers) but a fun ride. (Science fiction. 14 & up)