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Ones and Zeroes (Mirador)

Review

Ones and Zeroes (Mirador)

Take a minute to think about your day today. How many times did you check your phone? What about your laptop or tablet? What if I asked you how many of the things you did today required an internet connection? As our generation becomes fixated on new digital technologies, a future where technology is sovereign may not be as far-fetched as we’d like to believe to be. In Dan Wells’ second installment in his Mirador series, ONES AND ZEROES, he attacks this kind of future head on to reveal an actually plausible situation.

Marisa is a Latina teen who lives in 2050 Los Angeles, where the world depends on “nulis” (robots) and uses "djinis" to be completely wired to the internet wherever they are. She devotes most of her time to playing Overworld in VR with her friends, the Cherry Dogs.

When Marisa goes looking for answers about her robotic arm, she meets Alain, a rebel who wants to expose megacorps on their complete control of people around the world. After she realizes that her entire neighborhood is dependent on KT Sigan, the megacorp that provides all internet services for her neighborhood of San Juanito, she decides to join Alain in order to expose their corrupt system.

At the same time, Marisa and the Cherry Dogs just got into a prestigious league tournament for Overworld thrown by KT Sigan CEO’s daughter, providing the perfect timing for a thrilling series of actions that will ultimately determine the Marisa and her neighborhood’s survival.

This level of originality in young adult novels is incredibly hard to find, and ONES AND ZEROES does not disappoint. I absolutely loved the supporting characters, especially Anja, the sometimes-spoiled but innately kind member of the Cherry Dogs. There was something humanly wrong with Chaewon, KT Sigan CEO’s daughter and the organizer of the tournament the Cherry Dogs competed in. The fact that she basically rigged an entire competition in the name of charity makes me seriously question her sanity, but it makes for a rather likeable villain, so she made the book incredibly fun to read.

There was definitely a deeper meaning to the book that resonated strongly with me. Wells was trying to show that we are on a path to being completely dependent on the internet to live. This wasn’t just a story about a bunch of friends getting together to play video games and maybe save a neighborhood; this was a story about friendship, believing in yourself,  and learning to stand up for what you think is right.

Haven’t read BLUESCREEN? Don’t worry. The events from the previous are hinted at, but the story in ONES AND ZEROES doesn’t refer to previous events more than three times. I devoured this book in under one day, and I think that anyone would do the same. This is seriously a great book and an amazing sequel to build on the MIRADOR series. I’m really looking forward to the third book!

Reviewed by Rachel D., Teen Board Member on February 24, 2017

Ones and Zeroes (Mirador)
(Mirador #2)
by Dan Wells