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Hybrids: Saga Competition Winner [Paperback]

David Thorpe
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
RRP: 6.99
Price: 5.57 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Book Description

1 May 2007

A thrilling sci-fi novel set in a believeable – and terrifying – near future… Hybrids is the winning entry to the HarperCollins nationwide new author competition with SAGA Magazine.

Johnny Online and Kestrella are hybrids – victims of "Creep", a pandemic sweeping the country which causes sufferers to merge with items of technology when over-exposed to their use. Kestrella persuades a wary Johnny to help her find her missing mother, but the Gene Police have other plans for him…

Powerful, compelling, and narrated alternately by Johnny and Kes, it questions our human dependence on technology, and our reactions in the face of nationwide panic. This was the outstanding winner of the Children's Book Writing Competition run in conjunction with SAGA Magazine.

Orange-prize winning author Helen Dunmore – one of the judges – says: “The writing is sharp, the dialogue good, and the action pacey and page-turning. But there’s a real depth to this story, too. Like all good fiction it makes the reader see the world in a different light.”

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Product details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollinsChildren'sBooks (1 May 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007247842
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007247844
  • Product Dimensions: 13.1 x 19.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 127,185 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


"A stunningly clever novel." Amanda Craig, The Times

"[A] commendable first novel… there is vigour and vitality in Hybrids." Financial Times

"What singles out Hybrids is its well-crafted characters and finely spun tension. It's an impressive debut and clearly demonstrates why it beat nearly 900 other manuscripts to win a HarperCollins/Saga magazine writing competition. I certainly look forward to seeing what other ideas David Thorpe has to explore in the future." Bookseller's Choice, The Bookseller.

"Thorpe creates an inventive dystopian world." Books for Keeps

"I thought that this book was a masterpiece. The book is fast paced, and it interacts perfectly with the modern world. I recommend it to everybody. It is a five-star book!" 12-year-old reviewer for Redhouse

About the Author

David Thorpe lives in the mountains not far from the beaches of beautiful mid-Wales. He spends his time wondering. When he was smaller he noticed that most adults seemed to have forgotten what it was like to be a child and vowed to try not to do the same himself. Previously he has worked on the sewers, written comics, published eco-books and been a journalist. If you want to make him happy you can help to save the tiger from extinction.

Customer Reviews

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4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Set in a world like our own, in a place where a virus causes body parts to take on the form of technology, David Thorpe teaches not to judge by appearances alone.

The virus took away Johnny's face. The computer screen replacement has those of the Centre for Genetic Rehabilitation unit seeking him out, since he refuses to register as a hybrid and let his whereabouts be put under constant surveillance. Kestrella, daughter of a man who plays a role in this story, crosses paths with Johnny, changing his life forever. Intially he sees their encounter as a negative one, but over the course of the story he gains an unbreakable bond with her, while taking actions to help others.

I haven't read much sci-fi recently, and seem to have the initial reaction of wanting to put a book down when things are a bit strange (having a phone instead of a hand is strange in Kestrella's character). However, it was the character's attitudes to their changes which drew me in. They usually didn't see them as an impediment. Yes, the differences were something to hide at times, but most of the time they just got on with it. I think this is a brilliant book for those who are different from so-called 'normal' people. It doesn't stop them loving, or being loved. It doesn't stop them from making a difference in the world.

I couldn't predict where this story took me, and thoroughly enjoyed the biggest twist at the end. I'm one of those readers who wants 'more' from a book, and it would be great to see another book carrying on with the story where it ended here. For it isn't really the end at all, but another beginning.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Hybrids by David Thorpe 30 July 2007
An intriguing book, Hybrids by david Thorpe is well written to accomodate younger readers who may relate to events related, and take heed of the warning of becoming extravagantly attatched to evolving technology.
Hybrids are a nation of people overcome by a disease,'Creep', which affects their bodies, forcing them to eveolve into various commonly uesd devices.
The book talks of the younger generation struggling to be accepted back into their society, rather than being shunned as outcasts, and to enlighten others of the role they played towards the introduction of Creepwithin their own nation - and now the price they must pay for their neglect, whether affected or not; fear, mistrust, injustice and the lack of unity.
What begins as a small search for a missing mother soon expands, involving more people and turning into a mission for survival, in which none can be trusted.
The book tells of the two main characters journey to the end of the book, and the choices they make. The hunted are running from the hunters only to find the line between them is virtually non-existent.

I thought Hybrids to be, at first, rather unrealistic, however it has to be admitted that it can be associated to our generation today, as we stay 'joint at the hip' with evolving technology, totally disregarding the harms and dangers with which society can be affected.
Although an excellent book, it leaves the reader frustrated at the almost cliffhanger ending and wanting to know more. (I suppose to ensure the second book of the trilogy is read on arrival.)
Nevertheless, i enjoyed the book, with its truthful insights regarding our world today, as well as the small twists and turns which make the book hard to put down.
I recommend the book to anyone looking for an interesting and relatively fast-paced book.
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hybrids Triumphs! 8 Sep 2007
By Kez
I finished reading this only five minutes ago, and just had to say how wonderful I thought it was.

Normally I opt for your standard, run of the mill detective tomes...but I fancied something a little different. And boy did I get it!

Initially I wasn't too sure that the book could hold my interest. Sci Fi/Fantasy tends to leave me cold; but 'Hybrids' had me from the end of the first chapter.

The synopsis says it all, so I won't repeat it here. I'll just say that David Thorpe grabs your attention with a refreshingly punchy style...and won't let it go. 'Hybrids' ignites the imagination, raises questions and makes you see the 21st century in a new - often eerie, often amusing -light.

It's an intelligent, fabulously structured novel; with multi faceted characters that are completely tangible. I eagerly await the second in the trilogy!
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Chilling Tale Creep 20 Aug 2009
Hybrids is a fast-paced modern tale that gives the reader everything they could hope for in a young adult fiction novel. Technology has literally taken over Britain as a mysterious virus called Creep infects the teenage population; painful melding of technology onto human skin, creating Hybrids. Some Hybrids have phones melded to hands, while others are more severe. Johnny Online, who lives as an outcast since he caught Creep, is recruited buy Kestrella (another teen with Creep) to help find her missing mother. Having no face, but only a computer screen, Johnny is constantly battling to keep his identity while the virus updates him to a newer model. While keeping a low profile, writing the Declaration of Hybrid Rights on his untraceable blog, he must steer clear of the Gene Police who want to round all Creep carries into a highly controlled zone.

A warning to readers: this is highly addictive reading and leaves you with a cliff-hanger ending.
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