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Shift Paperback – 4 Sep 2012


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Product details

  • Paperback: 314 pages
  • Publisher: Strange Chemistry (4 Sept. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1908844043
  • ISBN-13: 978-1908844040
  • Product Dimensions: 13.1 x 2.3 x 19.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (31 customer reviews)

More About the Author

Kim was born in Dublin and moved to London when she was seven. She got her first typewriter when she was eight, had a poem she wrote about a snail published in a magazine when she was nine, and that was it - Kim was hooked on writing.

Because she never thought she'd actually be able to make a living as a writer, she decided she needed a trade to fall back on. So, naturally, she went to Sussex University to study philosophy.

While Kim's plan of being paid big bucks to think deep thoughts never quite worked out, she did land a job as a junior copywriter with an ad agency a week after graduating. She's worked in advertising ever since, specialising in writing for videogames.

Product Description

Review

It s slick and quick with just the right amount of squick (benjo s lovely and gross), and the central premise unfolds satisfyingly --Tom Pollock, author of The City s Son. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

About the Author

Kim was born in Dublin and moved to London when she was seven. After studying Philosophy and Literature at Sussex University her plan of being paid big bucks to think deep thoughts never quite paid off. So she became an advertising copywriter instead, specialising in writing for videogames. She lives in SW London with her husband - if they're not both off travelling. When she's not writing she fences and plays guitar. Both very badly.

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By SJH @ A Dream of Books on 6 Sept. 2012
Format: Paperback
Published by new young-adult imprint, Strange Chemistry, 'Shift' was an enjoyable and original debut by British author Kim Curran.

I loved the idea behind 'Shift' which is that certain teenagers have the ability to shift from one reality to another, where decisions can be changed, leading to different future paths. Like the main character Scott, I thought that would be such a cool ability to have. I mean imagine being able to right all those wrong choices with a single thought.

Very few young-adult books have male narrators so it was refreshing to see events unfold from the viewpoint of Scott Tyler, who unexpectedly discovers at the start of the story that he is a shifter. His whole world is literally turned upside down by this revelation and nothing in his life will ever be the same again. He meets lots of new people from here on in and one of the best is Aubrey who is smart and clever and explains to him the new life which now lies ahead of him. In places I thought that the dialogue seemed a little stilted which sometimes made it difficult to connect with all the characters but many of them had grown on me by the end of the book.

I actually thought that the story initially started a bit slowly and I wasn't sure whether it was going to pick up. Luckily it did and as the plot progressed, it got a lot more exciting with some unexpected (and on occasion quite grotesque!) surprises thrown in along the way.

I don't know if this is a stand-alone novel or not, but I'm guessing from the way it concluded that there will be a sequel. It will be interesting to see where Kim Curran takes the story next as at this point she could take it in several different directions.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Emma @ Book Angel Booktopia VINE VOICE on 19 Sept. 2012
Format: Paperback
I loved Scott's narrative voice, he is an utterly realistic 16 year old. The world in which he lives is brought to vivid life with Kim Curran's descriptive, relatable writing style. Scott's life is utterly normal, parents who argue constantly and a younger sister that out shines him in nearly every way, that is until Scott discovers he can `shift' quite by accident.

The portrayal of the actual time travel or `shifting' in this book was fascinating, well thought out and developed. The consequences of a time shift clearly shown within the narrative, even the slightest change has a ripple effect and this aspect was a very clever inclusion. The concept of not appreciating what you have until it's gone is a consequence that I had not previously considered with the thought of time travel, it is generally the thought of getting back what had previously been lost.

The limitations on the `shifting' ability added depth to the plot and provided a means to direct the story in a number of surprising ways. The use of secret government departments, their opposing group and their interactions maintained the action alongside a sense of tension as the plot unfolded. The plot in itself provided a number of unexpected twists. The use of power and how it corrupts as well as the lengths some people go to in order to acquire such power is chilling in its portrayal.

While I enjoyed this book I have to say that I wasn't expecting it to be quite so gory. For those of you that know me you will already know that I have a vivid imagination and can't cope with too much gore. So I have a warning for you - what ever you do - Don't read this book while your eating breakfast, especially the part with the cats. Seriously you won't be able to look at a cat the same way again.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Michelle Moore TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 16 Sept. 2012
Format: Paperback
Scott Taylor is a pretty average teenage, who one evening decides to hang out in the park with the popular kids. He's persuaded to climb a pylon, and finds himself the falling. The next thing he knows, he's lying by the fence, and has apparently not tried to climb it at all.

He soon finds out that he is a Shifter - someone who has the ability to change their past decisions, and therefore `shift'. Immediately as a reader you start imagining what it would be like with this ability.. every time you make a bad decision in life, you could go back and make a different one.

Almost as if expecting this reaction, the author shows us early on what affect this can have, as Scott makes a shift with devastating consequences. We're also introduced to an agency which wishes to teach and regulate shifters, and an organisation fighting against this regulation.

Scott is a brilliant main character, typical of an average teen thrust into a strange world. Instead of simply accepting it, and becoming a hero, he often questions the decisions and actions of others, and has a realistic response to events. Even with this though, you can see him grow and change.

There's also a good cast of supporting characters, from the other shifters Scott meets, through the adults involved, right up to the rather gruesome baddie!

I loved the idea of shifting, and there is so much potential. It's story in itself, but there is room for more. I believe there are two more books to come, watch out for my interview with the author to confirm this.

This is a book for older teens - there is a sprinkling of swear words, but they really don't feel out of place, and some of the content when the baddie is involved is probably not for younger readers.
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