A few years have passed since Tally Youngblood destroyed the establishment based on pretties, uglies and specials. Now popularity runs the world. Popularity means power. Each citizen is ranked by how much she or he is talked about. Cameras record everything as they vie to be the person with the most buzz.
Fifteen-year-old Aya Fuse has a pitiful "face rank," or popularity ranking, of 451,369, which makes her a society nonentity, commonly known as an "extra." Aya's older brother Hiro, on the other hand, is famous. But Aya has a plan to up her popularity ranking. She takes Moggle, her trusty (and kind of adorable) hovercam, to a party filled with tech-heads (in love with the latest technological goodies) and surge monkeys (who indulge in wild plastic surgery modifications on themselves).
Aya hopes to discover and film a huge story about a secret group. "Kicking," or spreading, the story on her feed should result in acclaim for herself, thus upping her face rank. Because of her parents' refusal to let her become a pretty before she is 16, Aya is stuck with her average looks, including what she considers to be a huge nose. So she disguises herself by wearing a gray, hooded robe and joins a group of similarly garbed Reputation Bombers, who join to chant the name of one member in order to bump up his face rank. In the meantime, she sends Moggle out to search for members of the group who Aya had seen surfing on top of a crazy-fast mag-lev train. Anyone who kicks the story of the train riders will be famous, and Aya aims to take advantage.
Finally, Moggle sends Aya an image she recognizes. It's hoverball champion Eden Maru, who happens to be one of the train riders. Eden is famous, with a face rank that once reached an enviable 10,000. But no one knows about her wild adventures with her secret group. Aya watches Eden via Moggle. As the hoverball player edges to the exit, an amazing boy speaks to Aya, calling her face "unique." He introduces himself as Frizz Mizuno. Frizz is not only beautiful, but Aya sees in her eyescreen that his face rank is an astounding 4,612! Why is he even associating with Aya, much less gazing at her with undisguised interest? But she can't stay to find out because Eden is leaving.
Aya hoverboards after Eden, who zigzags through the city's new construction with ease. She forces herself not to think about the intriguing Frizz but to concentrate on getting the story, as she follows Eden deep inside a dark tunnel. What they find there is a cataclysmic secret --- so huge that the fate of the Earth may hinge on it.
It's a happy day for fans when a stellar "trilogy" morphs into a series. Like the three books in Scott Westerfelds Uglies trilogy, EXTRAS is a fast-paced page-turner with many plot twists. It has all the elements of a terrific read: heart-pounding adventure, extreme sports, friendship, espionage, a bit of tender romance, strong and brave women, and the quest for popularity. It also includes much pointed commentary on society's celebrities, power, blogging, the environment, celebrity-based television shows and more. Fans will embrace new characters and enjoy meeting up with some of the cast from previous books.
EXTRAS continues the Uglies tradition in being an excellent futuristic thriller that also leaves the reader with plenty to ponder&and hoping for book five soon.
So I read the three other books in this trilogy turned four-book series, and I enjoyed them, especially Specials. But I wish the story would have stopped there.
It started out with a lot of potential. The scenario was a very original and therefore interesting one. But as I read on, the plot just seemed to drag along. As far as I could tell, there was no climax. The "adventures" weren't enough to capture my attention and the plot was just boring, boring, boring.
Also, the main character, Aya's obsession with fame and always having to be on camera before she did something was annoying. I felt she didn't grab how serious certain situations were, she was so concerned with how she came off in it. Speaking of character, all of them seemed kind of flat. There was not enough development or individuality for me to actually care what happened to them.
So why did I finish reading it if it was that bad? Because Westerfeld's other books are amazing and I kept telling myself that it was going to get better. But it didn't...
Extras was a great sequel to the Uglies series especially because Tally reappears in it. I really like the new system Westerfield invented where people are ranked by popularity. Not that I would want it to happen, I just find it interesting.
You see a bit of repetition with the betraying-her-friends thing, but Tally and Aya were in different situation and dealt with it differently, so it's hardely noticeable.
Extras takes place several years after Tally Youngblood ended the whole ugles/pretties/specials fiasco. But things in the future are still a little weird.
Aya Fuse is fifteen. She lives in a city in Japan where your rank determines everything. Fame is everything here. And what sucks for Aya is that although her older brother is totally known, Aya is a total extra, with a rank of 451,369. No one knows her. Shes an extra.
Aya wants to turn this around, so she starts to sneak out to parties and follow a group of girls who perform the coolest tricks but dont want the fame. These are the Sly Girls. Aya convinces them to let her join, and she starts to make some friends among them while also learning their tricks and filming them on the side. But it turns out that theres something bigger lurking out there. And its up to Aya and her new friends to stop them.
Extras was yet another thrilling story from Scott Westerfeld. The plot was always exciting; I was literally on the edge of my seat throughout the entire book. The characters are easy to understand, but mostly I love this book because of its unique storyline. There isnt much of Tally, Shay, and David shown in this story, but the glimpses of them are true to their characters. I loved this story, as I did Uglies,Pretties, and Specials before that. I definitely recommend this novel to everyone.
Extras: just another book leeching off the success of the others.
Reader reviewed by Kelby
I, like most devoted readers of the young adult genre, read the uglies series (uglies, pretties, specials) with complete hunger for the next book. The plot and characters created such issues and questions in the real world.
naturally, I went crazy when I found out that a fourth book was to be released, Extras.
I bought Extras and started reading.
At first, I found the book to go slowly and thought that I just needed to get into it.
however, as I read on, still excited and entranced by the other books, I found that Extras did not have the luster of the other three.
In fact, it was boring.
The characters leave something to be desired..what is it?...development???
and Tally's appearence angered me, as it seemed to be all about her again. and she is NOT fun from someone else's point of view. It was predictable and boring.
overall, I found this book only got extremely high sales because people bought it looking for something to quench their thirst for uglies.
I don't think I'll be picking it up again.
This book is set about three years after Specials. Aya lives in a world where popularity is key. Your face rank is the key to economic easy street. Aya is ranked pretty low and wants to push herself into the top tier, so she scouts out a story on the Sly Girls. The Sly Girls take thrill ride on the top of trains, but don't want anyone to know about them. After infiltrating the group, Aya thinks she has a great story, but then they stumble upon something even bigger. Strange-looking being are stashing something inside of a mountain near Aya's city. Are they dangerous? The Sly Girls investigate and Aya gets a story that might make her super-famous.
This book got off to a slow start. I thought the parts about riding on top of the train were a little boring and the Sly Girls are really just a device to launch the rest of the story. However, once the real story gets going it is very page-turning. The idea of popularity as currency is very interesting and Westerfeld provides a lot of real world parallels like kicking stories out to feeds (posting major stories on blogs). Worth a read if you have read the Uglies series.
Scott Westerfeld has proved himself all over again of being worthy of beautiful, hilarious, bestsellers. I loved Extra to the extreme because not only was it an amazing standpoint of how the future would look after Tally saved the world, but also because of the plot and everything else.
Most surprising, at first, was the setting. It's not in Diego anymore, and until halfway through the book, you don't realize that they are talking in Japanese. Then of course there is the setting, how the entire city operates. I think it's simply amazing how Westerfeld weaves such a story.
Finally, the most amazing part of the novel is how enhanced Aya, as a character, is. She's is definitely not your typical Mary Sue, and you can see how flawed she is, as well as extraordinary.
Yes, it was quite delightful how Tally and David make a comeback, and I think it's exactly what all the series readers needs, a closing of all threads.
I really like this whole series and this book was no exception, but I thought it was kind of strange tht it was from Aya's point of view instead of from Tally's. the whole story has been Tally's up until now and it was weird to see her from Aya's perspective, esp. since she kind of idolized her but then didn't trust her when she actually met her.
I thought the action level was really good, you had to keep reading and couldn't put the book down once it got started. Aya was really kind of self absorbed though. But I guess Tally was too in some parts of the series.
Extras was kind of slow.I felt it was hard to stay focused throughout the story.
Yes Aya is a likeable character but I didnt like how she almost made Tally and Shay look like the bad guys.I think the book would have been way more interesting if it was written again in Tally's P.O.V
Scott Westerfeld has already touched upon important issues in the previous books in this series. Now in Extras, he touches upon another important issue in our society: fame. Aya Fuse has spent her whole life trying to up her face rank. So far it's not working. But now she has the story of her lifetime and she will do anything to be the one to tell it...
Despite the fact that this is the fourth book in the series it can be read with no previous knowledge of the former three books. Tally from the other books does appear but the story is not about her-it is about Aya. Aya is a likeable character and it is interesting to watch her grow throughout the book.