Zero Day

I work at a library and we started an informal book club. One of my coworkers wanted to read this book and we ended up all reading it together. Out of the six people in the the group, not one liked this book. Jan Gangsei’s Zero Day follows the story of Addie Webster, the eldest daughter of the current U.S. President. Addie was kidnapped as a young child and has just recently returned, under suspicious circumstances.

This is billed as a political thriller for teens, a la 24. Which it was, but not a particularly well-written one. This book was so full of plot holes and cliches, that I don’t even know how it was published in its current form. It was even chosen as a Lone Star Book through the Texas Library Association, something else that baffles me.

Addie is a super-hacker that is having trouble readjusting to life with her family. She was brainwashed by her kidnapper, who is also trying to bring down the government. While I can suspend some disbelief for the terrible tropes, Addie hacks into the U.S. Government in just a few minutes. Most of the plot seems to be crafted for the sake of moving the story along, not for any particular theme or characterization.

The only scene I liked in the novel was one towards the end when Addie’s dad saves her life. She realizes that he loves his daughter and doesn’t just see her as a political tool. This was by far the best scene in the novel, even if it was just as unrealistic as the rest of it.



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