The Color of Rain

The Color of Rain by Cori McCarthy is a crazy (and I mean that in the best way possible) young adult science fiction thriller. This book was immediately gripping and sucked me right in. The cover itself drew me in with the beauty of Rain and the mystery of the cosmos.

About the book:
If there is one thing that seventeen-year-old Rain knows and knows well, it is survival. Caring for her little brother, Walker, who is "Touched," and losing the rest of her family to the same disease, Rain has long had to fend for herself on the bleak, dangerous streets of Earth City. When she looks to the stars, Rain sees escape and the only possible cure for Walker. And when a darkly handsome and mysterious captain named Johnny offers her passage to the Edge, Rain immediately boards his spaceship. Her only price: her "willingness."
The Void cloaks many secrets, and Rain quickly discovers that Johnny's ship serves as host for an underground slave trade for the Touched . . . and a prostitution ring for Johnny's girls. With hair as red as the bracelet that indicates her status on the ship, the feeling of being a marked target is not helpful in Rain's quest to escape. Even worse, Rain is unsure if she will be able to pay the costs of love, family, hope, and self-preservation.
With intergalactic twists and turns, Cori McCarthy's debut space thriller exists in an orbit of its own.

My thoughts:
I thoroughly enjoyed this debut YA novel from Cori McCarthy. The Color of Rain is a satisfying science fiction thriller geared towards the older young adult reader (or all of us adults who have recognized the amazing literature out there in the young adult genre!). McCarthy did a beautiful job showcasing character development. I immediately was drawn to Rain and her struggles - I wanted to help her and give her some sage advice; shield her from the scum of earth and the intergalactic airspace. McCarthy also did a stellar job creating Rain's world - Earth City was easily imagined, even though little time was spent there. The majority of the book played out on Johnny's ship while in flight. The layout of the ship wasn't what stuck with me, but the feeling on board did. Seems as though the vibe of the book is what really stayed with me long after I put this down. The Color of Rain was dark, gritty, sexual, and daring. The idea of "anything goes" and Rain's willingness to do whatever it takes to save her brother mixes to create a sex fueled futuristic tale of warning.
This novel is definitely a phenomenal story. It is like nothing that I have read before- which is refreshing. 
I would certainly recommend this to older readers and fans of YA Lit. It is for readers looking for a new author to enjoy and those who like a little futuristic drama. However, it is also a story I wouldn't offer to a young teen... I don't think this fits for readers under 17 -- the sex and prostitution were enough to give me pause when I was deciding whether or not to put this in my class library (I teach 14 - 16 year olds). Ultimately, I have decided this isn't a story to share in my class library, but that isn't to say a parent can't share it with their younger YA reader - I just know better than to rock the boat with sex in a book in my classroom!

About the author:
Cori M. McCarthy has a BA in Creative Writing from Ohio University, a graduate certificate in screenwriting from UCLA, and an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from Vermont College of the Fine Arts. Born in Guam, (a military kid), she has lived in Ireland and traveled widely around the world, but now lives in Michigan with her husband and baby son.

Book & Author Information provided by Running Press
FTC: I received this book from the publisher for a fair & honest review

write to be understood, speak to be heard, read to grow

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