The Farm Featured

http://www.yabookscentral.com/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x275s/48/82/09/_the-farm-emily-mckay-1346208577.jpg
 
3.7
 
4.1 (3)
1631   2
Author(s)
Genre(s)
Age Range
16+
Release Date
December 04, 2012
ISBN
978-0425257807
Buy This Book
      

Life was different in the Before: before the Ticks began devouring humans in a deadly swarm across America; before the surviving young people were rounded up and quarantined “for their own protection.” These days, we know what those quarantines are—holding pens where human blood is turned into more food for the Ticks. Surrounded by electrical fences, most kids try to survive the Farms by turning on each other… And when trust is a thing of the past, escape is nearly impossible. Lily and her twin sister Mel have a plan. Though Mel can barely communicate, her autism helps her notice things no one else notices—like the portion of electrical fence that gets turned off every night. Getting across won’t be easy, but as Lily gathers what they need to escape, a familiar face appears out of nowhere, offering to help… Carter was a schoolmate of Lily’s in the Before. Managing to evade capture until now, he has valuable knowledge of the outside world. But like everyone on the Farm, Carter has his own agenda, and he knows that behind the Ticks is an even more dangerous threat to the human race...

Editor reviews

Like its cover, Emily McKay's The Farm is exceedingly dark and creepy, filled with the kinds of vampires that are never going to make swoon-inducing heroes. The Farm reminded me somewhat of The Passage and of The Immortal Rules, both in tone and vampire-ness.

In The Farm, the world has been overrun by Ticks. No, not the bugs. Humans-turned-monsters that feed on human blood. As is the case in roughly 37% of post-apocalyptic fiction, scientific research intended to help humanity accidentally got loose and turned some of the population into man-eating monsters. Oops! The road to hors d'oeuvres is paved with good intentions, right?

Like in The Passage, the humans have consolidated into walled communities, carefully defended from the monsters roaming the majority of the world. Thankfully, the Ticks are not as clever as the creatures in The Passage. The difference, though, is that the humans are not behind the walls united to fight against the monsters. The people under eighteen were rounded up and stuck into these Farms, ostensibly because young, hormonal people are the most delicious and thus the most endangered. They are fed up, fattened up, and required to go for regular blood draws, this and the crazy, out-of-control vamps outside the city reminded me heavily of The Immortal Rules.

Lily and her twin sister Mel are about to turn eighteen. Unconvinced that what will happen on their birthday will be at all pleasant (nobody knows what becomes of the people who 'graduate' from the Farms), Lily determines that they will escape. She prepares to trade for the final items necessary to complete their withdrawal from the camp. Everything's planned; she can keep Mel safe.

Lily lives her life for Mel, her mother's last words having been an invocation to protect her sister. Mel has autism, which has not been improved by the collapse of the world as it once was. In high school, Mel was relatively high-functioning, but, now, she can no longer speak in anything but nursery rhymes, something she did as a child. Lily's love and care for Mel is powerful and touching, definitely the most powerful aspect of the book for me.

Just when they're about ready to escape, enter the love interest, Carter, the only crush Lily has ever had. He was the typical bad boy and Lily's lab partner. He now seems like he could be their deliverance, if only she could trust him, which she can't do, since he obviously wants something. Though this won't make sense if you haven't read it, I have to state that I'm really not a fan of the abductura angle of the story, especially if this book is a standalone.

McKay uses three perspectives to tell the story: Lily, Carter and Mel. The bulk of the narration is Lily's in first person. She has a powerful voice, and is one of those heroines that manages to be likable but not all that nice. Her sections really worked. Mel's sections, also in first person, were perhaps my favorites and I really wish that they had been longer. Mel has a unique way of perceiving the world that I found utterly beautiful. Unfortunately, she receives only about ten pages. None of her sections are above two pages.

Where things go wonky are Carter's bits. For some reason I cannot even begin to fathom, Carter's sections are told in third person. This threw me out of the story every single time, because everything else was in first person and I expect that to continue. Choose one! As a result, I also didn't have as strong of a sense of Carter's character. Actually, I don't really think it was entirely necessary to have him as a POV. I think The Farm would have worked better as all Lily's narration or a more-balanced narration with just the two sisters.

If you enjoy post-apocalyptic horror novels, The Farm will not disappoint. From what I can tell (aka Goodreads), The Farm is a standalone, but I wouldn't be at all surprised to learn that more books are coming. It could really go either way, I think, but there are subjects that have scarcely been touched on, such as the folks orchestrating the Farms (and what precisely happens there) or where all the adults are. I personally hope there's more.
Overall rating 
 
3.7
Plot 
 
3.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0

Dark and Creepy

Like its cover, Emily McKay's The Farm is exceedingly dark and creepy, filled with the kinds of vampires that are never going to make swoon-inducing heroes. The Farm reminded me somewhat of The Passage and of The Immortal Rules, both in tone and vampire-ness.

In The Farm, the world has been overrun by Ticks. No, not the bugs. Humans-turned-monsters that feed on human blood. As is the case in roughly 37% of post-apocalyptic fiction, scientific research intended to help humanity accidentally got loose and turned some of the population into man-eating monsters. Oops! The road to hors d'oeuvres is paved with good intentions, right?

Like in The Passage, the humans have consolidated into walled communities, carefully defended from the monsters roaming the majority of the world. Thankfully, the Ticks are not as clever as the creatures in The Passage. The difference, though, is that the humans are not behind the walls united to fight against the monsters. The people under eighteen were rounded up and stuck into these Farms, ostensibly because young, hormonal people are the most delicious and thus the most endangered. They are fed up, fattened up, and required to go for regular blood draws, this and the crazy, out-of-control vamps outside the city reminded me heavily of The Immortal Rules.

Lily and her twin sister Mel are about to turn eighteen. Unconvinced that what will happen on their birthday will be at all pleasant (nobody knows what becomes of the people who 'graduate' from the Farms), Lily determines that they will escape. She prepares to trade for the final items necessary to complete their withdrawal from the camp. Everything's planned; she can keep Mel safe.

Lily lives her life for Mel, her mother's last words having been an invocation to protect her sister. Mel has autism, which has not been improved by the collapse of the world as it once was. In high school, Mel was relatively high-functioning, but, now, she can no longer speak in anything but nursery rhymes, something she did as a child. Lily's love and care for Mel is powerful and touching, definitely the most powerful aspect of the book for me.

Just when they're about ready to escape, enter the love interest, Carter, the only crush Lily has ever had. He was the typical bad boy and Lily's lab partner. He now seems like he could be their deliverance, if only she could trust him, which she can't do, since he obviously wants something. Though this won't make sense if you haven't read it, I have to state that I'm really not a fan of the abductura angle of the story, especially if this book is a standalone.

McKay uses three perspectives to tell the story: Lily, Carter and Mel. The bulk of the narration is Lily's in first person. She has a powerful voice, and is one of those heroines that manages to be likable but not all that nice. Her sections really worked. Mel's sections, also in first person, were perhaps my favorites and I really wish that they had been longer. Mel has a unique way of perceiving the world that I found utterly beautiful. Unfortunately, she receives only about ten pages. None of her sections are above two pages.

Where things go wonky are Carter's bits. For some reason I cannot even begin to fathom, Carter's sections are told in third person. This threw me out of the story every single time, because everything else was in first person and I expect that to continue. Choose one! As a result, I also didn't have as strong of a sense of Carter's character. Actually, I don't really think it was entirely necessary to have him as a POV. I think The Farm would have worked better as all Lily's narration or a more-balanced narration with just the two sisters.

If you enjoy post-apocalyptic horror novels, The Farm will not disappoint. From what I can tell (aka Goodreads), The Farm is a standalone, but I wouldn't be at all surprised to learn that more books are coming. It could really go either way, I think, but there are subjects that have scarcely been touched on, such as the folks orchestrating the Farms (and what precisely happens there) or where all the adults are. I personally hope there's more.

Was this review helpful to you? 
 

User reviews

Average user rating from: 3 user(s)

Already have an account? or Create an account
Overall rating 
 
4.1
Plot 
 
4.3  (3)
Characters 
 
4.0  (3)
Writing Style 
 
4.0  (3)
I came across this a while back, and was excited to pick it up. From the blurb I was curious as to what exactly a Tick was, and what they did to the humans and how Lily and Mel were going to escape it all. I got the answers, and a thrilling ride along the way. Lily and Mel have been in living on a “farm”, basically they are the food source. Lily has been taking care of her autistic twin sister Mel. Life for them isn’t easy without parents, and just being in the environment they are in. the plan that was devised by Lily to escape doesn’t go the way she planned at all, but with the help of someone from her past she gets the unwanted help she needs to try it.

Lily is a character that I just adored from the beginning. She cares so deeply for her sister Mel, and does everything she does with her in mind, wanting to keep her safe is her first and foremost priority. Lily was as stubborn as they come, and at times it was annoying and I just wanted to yell at her and tell her to just be quite, I did understand her especially when Carter comes into the picture. Don’t get me wrong, he was her high school crush and he was secretive, but sweet. Intense at times, but cared for Lily and Mel. The chemistry between him and Lily was a little back and forth, and I just wanted them to give in already. It was fun to watch tough. I have to mention one of the secondary characters, Sebastion. He is a vampire and the Ticks, he was sarcastic but badass too. Can’t wait to see more of him.

The story is told from 3 POV’s, Lily, Mel and Carter. Lily and Carters POV was insightful into the way they both see things a little different but it also gave a chance to see how torn they both were about so many things. Mel’s POV was a great addition, while they chapters from her were short, it showed that even though she may be autistic, she was more in tune with everything going on around her than her sister believed she was.
It’s a scary time for all humans, they are being used a source of food for the Tick, who happen to be genetically altered humans that went wrong and took over. Interesting right? But that’s not all, there was good old fashion vampires in the mix too, and they weren’t happy about the Ticks either. There was plenty of action to go around, with a few small twist like the real reason Carter came looking for Mel, to the big one at the end which I kinda saw coming, but still wasn’t prepared for. Definitely made me excited for the next book.

I like books about vampires and with so many out there, sometimes it is hard to find one that I really like, McKay’s take was interesting and I enjoyed them. The Farm was interesting and I really did enjoy it, the characters were great and the plot was kept my interest, what more could I ask for. The second book, The Lair, will be out in November and with that ending I am looking forward to seeing what happens with Lily and Mel.
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
Jenea Whittington Reviewed by Jenea Whittington August 22, 2013
Top 500 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (12)

Review for The Farm (The Farm #1) by Emily McKay

I came across this a while back, and was excited to pick it up. From the blurb I was curious as to what exactly a Tick was, and what they did to the humans and how Lily and Mel were going to escape it all. I got the answers, and a thrilling ride along the way. Lily and Mel have been in living on a “farm”, basically they are the food source. Lily has been taking care of her autistic twin sister Mel. Life for them isn’t easy without parents, and just being in the environment they are in. the plan that was devised by Lily to escape doesn’t go the way she planned at all, but with the help of someone from her past she gets the unwanted help she needs to try it.

Lily is a character that I just adored from the beginning. She cares so deeply for her sister Mel, and does everything she does with her in mind, wanting to keep her safe is her first and foremost priority. Lily was as stubborn as they come, and at times it was annoying and I just wanted to yell at her and tell her to just be quite, I did understand her especially when Carter comes into the picture. Don’t get me wrong, he was her high school crush and he was secretive, but sweet. Intense at times, but cared for Lily and Mel. The chemistry between him and Lily was a little back and forth, and I just wanted them to give in already. It was fun to watch tough. I have to mention one of the secondary characters, Sebastion. He is a vampire and the Ticks, he was sarcastic but badass too. Can’t wait to see more of him.

The story is told from 3 POV’s, Lily, Mel and Carter. Lily and Carters POV was insightful into the way they both see things a little different but it also gave a chance to see how torn they both were about so many things. Mel’s POV was a great addition, while they chapters from her were short, it showed that even though she may be autistic, she was more in tune with everything going on around her than her sister believed she was.
It’s a scary time for all humans, they are being used a source of food for the Tick, who happen to be genetically altered humans that went wrong and took over. Interesting right? But that’s not all, there was good old fashion vampires in the mix too, and they weren’t happy about the Ticks either. There was plenty of action to go around, with a few small twist like the real reason Carter came looking for Mel, to the big one at the end which I kinda saw coming, but still wasn’t prepared for. Definitely made me excited for the next book.

I like books about vampires and with so many out there, sometimes it is hard to find one that I really like, McKay’s take was interesting and I enjoyed them. The Farm was interesting and I really did enjoy it, the characters were great and the plot was kept my interest, what more could I ask for. The second book, The Lair, will be out in November and with that ending I am looking forward to seeing what happens with Lily and Mel.

Was this review helpful to you? 
A dystopian society caused by vampires? Yes, please! It’s no secret that I’m a little (or a lot) obsessed with vampires, and my love of the Dystopia genre is steadily growing, so it’s no wonder that I loved The Farm! It even has multiple POVs which just adds to my love! The vampires are also most definitely not the good guys (with the exception of maybe one), which was an interesting and welcome change from the norm.

I really admired Lily. She’s managing to take care of herself and her autistic sister, Melanie, and keep them safe from the Ticks and Collabs. She has so much strength and patience. I would never be able to handle her situation. Her major fault is that she’s too stubborn. She doesn’t want to trust anyone, but she fails to realize that she needs help to keep herself safe and therefore keep Mel safe. Her stubbornness also keeps her from listening to good advice, which at times made her annoying.

It was really interesting to get Mel’s POV, too. She see things quite differently than her twin, but she understands more than Lily gives her credit for. She’s a musical savant, so she often describes things in terms of music in her head, but she has trouble verbalizing her observations to Lily. Sometime it was difficult to understand exactly what she meant, but her insight was definitely appreciated.

Finally, we have Carter’s POV which is annoyingly in third person. It seems like more and more authors are choosing to do this first-third flip-flop, which is frustrating. I hate it, but at least Carter’s chapters were interesting. Right off the bat we learn that he’s “playing” Lily and he knows stuff about her that she doesn’t even know about herself. I love how Carter and Mel’s chapters add things that Lily is blind to, especially since she’s our main heroine.

As for the world, it’s dark and dangerous. There are “farms” set up all across the country that essentially round up teenagers as cattle for The Ticks, vampires gone wrong. They apparently like the taste of teens the best because they have just the right hormone levels. No one knows what happens to the adults, and Breeders are safe, since pregnancy hormones are unpalatable. It’s all very scientific which I admired and loved!

The first 250 pages take place in one day. It’s a super action packed, adrenaline filled day. There’s so much tension as Lily tries to escape the Farm with her twin and Carter. But getting on the other side of the fence doesn’t mean they’re free, in fact, there’s even more danger in the abandoned regions of the countries. Then that ending…woah! The Farm is an intense read.
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
Angie F. Reviewed by Angie F. April 08, 2013
Top 50 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (87)

The Farm

A dystopian society caused by vampires? Yes, please! It’s no secret that I’m a little (or a lot) obsessed with vampires, and my love of the Dystopia genre is steadily growing, so it’s no wonder that I loved The Farm! It even has multiple POVs which just adds to my love! The vampires are also most definitely not the good guys (with the exception of maybe one), which was an interesting and welcome change from the norm.

I really admired Lily. She’s managing to take care of herself and her autistic sister, Melanie, and keep them safe from the Ticks and Collabs. She has so much strength and patience. I would never be able to handle her situation. Her major fault is that she’s too stubborn. She doesn’t want to trust anyone, but she fails to realize that she needs help to keep herself safe and therefore keep Mel safe. Her stubbornness also keeps her from listening to good advice, which at times made her annoying.

It was really interesting to get Mel’s POV, too. She see things quite differently than her twin, but she understands more than Lily gives her credit for. She’s a musical savant, so she often describes things in terms of music in her head, but she has trouble verbalizing her observations to Lily. Sometime it was difficult to understand exactly what she meant, but her insight was definitely appreciated.

Finally, we have Carter’s POV which is annoyingly in third person. It seems like more and more authors are choosing to do this first-third flip-flop, which is frustrating. I hate it, but at least Carter’s chapters were interesting. Right off the bat we learn that he’s “playing” Lily and he knows stuff about her that she doesn’t even know about herself. I love how Carter and Mel’s chapters add things that Lily is blind to, especially since she’s our main heroine.

As for the world, it’s dark and dangerous. There are “farms” set up all across the country that essentially round up teenagers as cattle for The Ticks, vampires gone wrong. They apparently like the taste of teens the best because they have just the right hormone levels. No one knows what happens to the adults, and Breeders are safe, since pregnancy hormones are unpalatable. It’s all very scientific which I admired and loved!

The first 250 pages take place in one day. It’s a super action packed, adrenaline filled day. There’s so much tension as Lily tries to escape the Farm with her twin and Carter. But getting on the other side of the fence doesn’t mean they’re free, in fact, there’s even more danger in the abandoned regions of the countries. Then that ending…woah! The Farm is an intense read.

Was this review helpful to you? 
This book gives a new light on how intelligent the autistic are.
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
Paige Reviewed by Paige April 06, 2013
Top 50 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (53)

The Farm Review

This book gives a new light on how intelligent the autistic are.

Was this review helpful to you? 
 
Powered by JReviews

LATEST YABC BLOG POSTS - BLOG TOURS, ANNOUNCEMENTS, AND GIVEAWAYS

  • It's live!! Cover Reveal: Perdita by Faith Gardner + Giveaway (US/Canada)

    Welcome, everyone! Today we're super excited to celebrate the cover reveal for PERDITA by Faith Gardner, releasing August 18, 2015 from Merit Press. Before we get to the cover, here's a note from Faith:   Hello YABC readers! My name is Faith Gardner and I’m thril ...

  • What's New in YA

      Are you wondering what's new in YA today? Check out these wonderful new releases!       Readers of I Am Number Four, The Maze Runner, and Legend will love this sophisticated adventure series by the cocreator of the groundbreaking television show Twin ...

  • Author Top 5 with Jenny Martin

      Today we welcome Jenny Martin to YABC! Martin's soon to be released debut novel, Tracked, is sure to appeal to fans of The Fast and the Furious and Firely along with Marie Lu's Legend and Veronica Roth's Divergent. This book will be racing across the finis ...

  • Chapter Reveal: The Ark by Laura Liddell Nolen + Giveaway (International)

    The Ark by Laura Liddell Nolen Release Date: March 26, 2015 Before we get to the chapter, here's a note from Laura:   Hi, YABC! I’m fired up about sharing my first chapter with you today. The Ark is about a young convict trapped in prison on the last day of ...

  • Author Top 5 with Django Wexler

      Today we welcome Django Wexler to YABC! Wexler's newly released sequel to The Forbidden Library, The Mad Apprentice: The Forbidden Library: Volume 2, is a fantasy adventure sure to appeal to fans of Harry Potter, Coroline, and Inkheart! Django has given us a list of the ...

  • April 2015 Book Haul!

    Hey YABCers!  Our office was innundated with fabulous kidlit, middle grade, and YA books this month! (Including an audio book and a graphic novel.) Check out our book haul below and tell us which books look the most interesting to you!    ...

  • Giveaway: Twintuition - Double Vision by Tia & Tamera Mowry (US Only)

    TWINTUITION: DOUBLE VISION by Tia & Tamera Mowry Release Date: April 21, 2015   About the Book Cassie and Caitlyn Waters may be identical twins, but everything else about them is completely different. The only thing they can agree on is that neither of them is happy th ...

  • It's live!! Cover Reveal: The Complete Blooming Goddess Trilogy by Tellulah Darling + Giveaway (International)

    Hi, YABCers! Today we're super excited to celebrate the cover reveal for THE COMPLETE BLOOMING GODDESS TRILOGY by Tellulah Darling, releasing April 30, 2015 from Te Da Media. Before we get to the cover, here's a note from Tellulah:   Hey YABC! I’ve basically been in sque ...

  • What's New in YA

      Are you wondering what's new in YA today? Check out these wonderful new releases!       From the acclaimed author of How to Love comes another stunning contemporary novel, perfect for fans of Sarah Dessen.   Molly Barlow is facing on ...

  • The Librarian's Corner

        I am happy to share with the YABC community the brand new Librarian's Corner column! This column features three themed book recommendations from a Teen Librarian each month. My name is Eden Grey, and I'll be doing the column each month. I am a Teen Librarian, and I absolutel ...

  • Chapter Reveal: Last Year's Mistake by Gina Ciocca

    Last Year's Mistake by Gina Ciocca Release Date: June 9, 2015 Before we get to the chapter, here's a note from Gina:   I’m so excited to share the first chapter of LAST YEAR’S MISTAKE with all of you! I’ve written this opening many different ways, and I lov ...

  • Giveaway: The Ark by Laura Liddell (International)

    The Ark By Laura Liddell Nolen    Release Date: March 26, 2015   About the Book It’s the final days of earth, and sixteen-year-old Char is right where she belongs: in prison. With her criminal record, she doesn’t qualify for a place on an Ark, one of the five ...

View more blog entries

Latest Book Listings Added

Mika is about to fulfill her dream of working at the world famous Monterey Bay Aquarium when her plans are...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Category: Kids Fiction
A quiet city in black and white bursts into color as an energetic child uses colorful crayons to create vibrant...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Category: Kids Fiction
Would an elephant learn the ABCs if she went to school? No way! She would learn to use her trunk...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Category: Kids Fiction
Slurp, munch, crunch! Little hands will be turning the page to find out the real meals of animals! Would an...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
enlightened cover from amazon.jpg
Category: Young Adult Indie
Book 2 in the Light vs. Dark Series... After months of covert travel from Light clan to Light...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Category: Kids Fiction
Ace and Bub are tangled up in an island-hopping competition, and there’s more than just the grand prize—a houseboat!—at stake....
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Category: Kids Fiction
The search for a missing baby drives this heart-pounding page turner, from Edgar Award Winner Susan Shreve (LUCY FOREVER AND...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Category: Kids Fiction
Meet Hannah. Her name is a palindrome. Her birthday is on New Year’s. She wishes she had a cat. She’s...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
From Geoff Herbach, the award-winning author of the hit young adult novels Stupid Fast and Nothing Special, comes the ultimate...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Category: Kids Fiction
The fast-paced, action-packed sequel to LAWLESS. No more teachers. No more crooks! M Freeman thought she had finally found a...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
High school sophomore Zona Lowell has lived in New York City her whole life, and plans to follow in the...
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
Twelve bestselling young adult authors contribute a story to this holiday themed book. Twelve holiday love stories are packed into...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Category: Young Adult Indie
Joey, the chocolate Labrador, loves to run and run. Living in the neighborhood of the Boston Marathon, he runs as...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Category: Kids Fiction
Here's the third entry in Claudia Mills' charming middle-grade series. Mason Dixon survived the school choir. He survived adopting his...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Category: Kids Fiction
For whimsical Cody, many things are beautiful, especially ants who say hello by rubbing feelers. But nothing is as beautiful...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Category: Kids Fiction
Fans of How to Train Your Dragon will love this whimsical tale, the first in a series, by a Newbery...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Fortune favors the bold in this adventurous tale of broken friendships, forbidden love, and a fiery heroine’s journey to escape...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Category: Kids Fiction
Alex Myers is a quarterback, but from the first day of football practice, it’s clear that that position is very...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
flora and ulysses.jpg
Category: Kids Fiction
Winner of the 2014 Newbery Medal Holy unanticipated occurrences! A cynic meets an unlikely superhero in a genre-breaking new novel...
 
4.5
 
0.0 (0)
Category: Young Adult Indie
Some endings are inevitable, but so are some stories. Cora Matthews, the principal’s gloomy goth daughter, is not exactly...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)