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THE LAST DAYS by Scott Westerfeld Kirkus Star


by Scott Westerfeld

Age Range: 14 & up

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2006
ISBN: 1-59514-062-X
Publisher: Razorbill/Penguin

Five new first-person perspectives replace Cal’s heated singular voice from Peeps (2005) in this continued thriller about an ancient vampire-spawning parasite and its role in saving civilization. Moz and Zahler, guitarists, are walking down the street when a parasite-positive woman throws an expensive guitar out a window. Moz and a stranger—Pearl—catch it in a blanket, and the three form a band. Pearl recruits Minerva—locked in her room for months because she’s parasite-positive, light-phobic and cannibalistic—to sing. Alana Ray, a synesthete who drums on paint buckets in Times Square, adds a brilliant backbeat. New York City is in shambles, with garbage piling up everywhere, peeps multiplying rapidly (some nursed back to sanity, others roaming the streets eating people) and mammoth underground worms breaking through concrete to devour masses of humans. The band’s urgent music calls to the worms in an obscure hypnotic language. Less startling and revelatory than Peeps; a broader, lateral look at the same world, with suspense, touches of humor and eminently appealing characters. (Fantasy. YA)