"Obedience is a key component of what the Developers call Promise, along with intelligence and physical strength." Promise is everything. It's how Developers rank them according to their usefulness. The ten sixteen year olds with the highest Promise in the test will be extracted to the planet Core, the home of the high-class citizens. There they'll be safe instead of worthless. They won't be forced to labor, live in impossible conditions on near starvation rations. They won't be replaced. This year 162 sixteen year olds are eligible. Only the top ten will be picked for extraction. Clementine qualifies but is ambivalent about her success because it means she must leave Logan behind. She must leave the Surface behind with its starvation and meager existence beneath the Dome with protects all from deadly acid from the moon. She travels through Crust, Mantle, and Lower, each with its own civilization and purpose to support the Core. When she arrives at the Core, she discovers that it isn't at all what she had hoped for. Sam, a lieutenant, and Charlie, Kiel's leader, make her existence problematic, if not impossible. Clem's bravery, ethical superiority, and commitment to friends power this spine-tingling Hunger Games-like novel.
The story continues in book two Rebellion.
Truman Award Preliminary Nominee 2016-17