Review – Switch by A.S. King

Posted June 4, 2021 by Carole in Reviews / 19 Comments

I received this book for free from the publisher. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review – Switch by A.S. KingSwitch by A.S. King
ISBN: 9780525555513
Published by Penguin on May 11, 2021
Genres: Apocalyptic & Post-Apocalyptic, Family, Mental Illness, Science Fiction, Siblings, Social Themes, Young Adult Fiction
Pages: 240
Format: Hardcover
Source: Publisher
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A surreal and timely novel about the effects of isolation and what it means to be connected to the world from the Printz Award-winning author of Dig.

Time has stopped. It's been June 23, 2020 for nearly a year as far as anyone can tell. Frantic adults demand teenagers focus on finding practical solutions to the worldwide crisis. Not everyone is on board though. Javelin-throwing prodigy Truda Becker is pretty sure her "Solution Time" class won't solve the world's problems, but she does have a few ideas what might. Truda lives in a house with a switch that no one ever touches, a switch her father protects every day by nailing it into hundreds of progressively larger boxes. But Truda's got a crow bar, and one way or another, she's going to see what happens when she flips the switch.

My feelings are kind of mixed with this book. I have read one other book by A.S. King in the past and enjoyed her work so I was eager to give this one a try. This was a strange book. Very readable but strange. It was a shorter book and I flew through it. I did enjoy the book but I found it to be a lot more abstract than I expected it to be.

Truda lives in a world where time has stopped. The world has adapted but everyone is still searching for something that will get time moving again. All schools are now requiring a class where students will work on theories to solve the time problem. At home, Tru’s father spends his days crafting their home into a series of boxes while Tru just wants her mom to come home. Soon Tru discovers that she can throw a javelin further than anyone ever has and the rooms in her house are all turned on their side. It seems that everything in the world is off-kilter and needs a jump start to get back on track.

I kept waiting for everything to fall into place and start making sense but I think that the message in this book wasn’t as clear cut as I had hoped it would be. The writing style was also quite different with a lot of sentence fragments which I think worked within this story quite well but it did take some time to get used to. I didn’t really connect with any of the characters in this story but I felt compelled to keep reading just to see how time would get moving again.

I am glad that I read this book and I think that it could work well for some readers but others may have some trouble with it. This is a different kind of story and I found it to be quite imaginative. I wouldn’t hesitate to read more from A.S. King in the future.

I received a copy of this book from the Penguin Teen via Bookish First.

19 responses to “Review – Switch by A.S. King

  1. From what you describe, this sounds like a typical King book to me. I have read several of her books, and they were all somewhat odd experiences, but cool at the same time. I feel like her style may not appeal to all, but I find wonderfully weird.

    • I liked this book but I didn’t think that it was great. I enjoyed Still Life with Tornado a bit more than this one. I tend to like weird books so I will definitely be reading more of her work.

  2. I know several people who consider King their favorite author, but I’ve never read anything by her. From reading various reviews, I get the feeling that he writing would be a little too out there for me. 🙂

  3. It can be tough when you are waiting for a story to come together and deliver a message. Sorry this one didn’t work out for you.

  4. This sounds like kind of a confusing read. I’m not into abstract, not really sure what’s going on kind of stories, but I’d probably like to know how it all turned out after picking it up. At least it was short! Great review, Carole!

  5. Why are adults all find a solution teens! Couldn’t the adults do it? Also if time stopped, so it is always summe? Or something? So many questions

  6. Jenn

    I have read every other book by AS King and this was really disappointing.
    Just too out there…which feels ridiculous to say because that is how her books usually are.
    This is a difficult read with characters I did not relate to and no payoff for me emotionally.