I've come to expect a certain element of speechlessness every time I finish a Shusterman novel. A few audible gasps, some moments of gripping the pages so tightly in effort not to fall over in terror, etc. – the usual. However, I was not prepared for the thriller/urgent call to environmental action that is Dry. It's terrifyingly relevant to consider the ramifications of living in a world that's out of drinkable water. And the father-son Shusterman duo push this near-future dystopian narrative along around multi-dimensional and complex characters to wrestle with the question of how far desperation can take humans away from their humanity. It's been days since I read it, but I'm still haunted by this book.
“The authors do not hold back.” —Booklist (starred review) “The palpable desperation that pervades the plot…feels true, giving it a chilling air of inevitability.” —Publishers Weekly (starred review) “The Shustermans challenge readers.” —School Library Journal (starred review) “No one does doom like Neal Shusterman.” —Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
When the California drought escalates to catastrophic proportions, one teen is forced to make life and death decisions for her family in this harrowing story of survival from New York Times bestselling author Neal Shusterman and Jarrod Shusterman.
The drought—or the Tap-Out, as everyone calls it—has been going on for a while now. Everyone’s lives have become an endless list of don’ts: don’t water the lawn, don’t fill up your pool, don’t take long showers.
Until the taps run dry.
Suddenly, Alyssa’s quiet suburban street spirals into a warzone of desperation; neighbors and families turned against each other on the hunt for water. And when her parents don’t return and her life—and the life of her brother—is threatened, Alyssa has to make impossible choices if she’s going to survive.
About the Author
Neal Shusterman is the New York Times bestselling author of more than thirty award-winning books for children, teens, and adults, including the Unwind dystology, the Skinjacker trilogy, Downsiders, and Challenger Deep, which won the National Book Award. Scythe, the first book in his latest series, Arc of a Scythe, is a Michael L. Printz Honor Book. He also writes screenplays for motion pictures and television shows. Neal is the father of four, all of whom are talented writers and artists themselves. Visit Neal at StoryMan.com and Facebook.com/NealShusterman.
Jarrod Shusterman is the author of the short story “UnDevoured” in bestselling Unbound. He writes for film and television, and his talents extend to directing films and commercials. He was the story producer on the television movie Zedd—Moment of Clarity, and he and Neal Shusterman are adapting Dry for the screen. Jarrod lives in Los Angeles but enjoys traveling internationally, and is currently studying Spanish. He can be found on Instagram @JarrodShusterman.
* "No one does doom like Neal Shusterman... He and his debut novelist son have crafted a world of dark thirst and fiery desperation, which, despite tendrils of hope that thread through the conclusion, feels alarmingly near to our future." — Kirkus Reviews, STARRED REVIEW
* "The authors do not hold back... Lovers of horror action fiction will feel right at home with this terrifyingly realistic story of our tenuous relationship with the environment and of the resilience of the human spirit in the face of desperate situations." — Booklist, STARRED REVIEW
* "The palpable desperation that pervades the plot as it thunders toward the ending feels true, giving it a chilling air of inevitability... a study of how extreme circumstances can bring out people’s capacity for both panic and predation, ingenuity and altruism." — Publishers Weekly, STARRED REVIEW
This superb mini-apocalyptic cautionary tale is sure to please all readers — School Library Connection
Dry could play out tomorrow morning... With strong characterizations, a timely topic, and decisions to debate at every turn, this is a prime candidate for YA book clubs. — BCCB
The Shustermans challenge readers... This survival tale is packed with themes and allegories that will attract fans of literary YA as well as readers seeking a good adventure. — School Library Journal, STARRED REVIEW