Welcome to the Ark
Stephanie Tolan's Welcome to the Ark is a little scary, primarily because parts of it are very like what's really going on in the world.
In a nutshell, the novel is set in the near future. The violence is a bit worse, though... terrorist attacks and random acts of violence occur daily, the militias are taking over and no one is safe. A group of young adults wind up thrown together at a mental health "retreat" and discover that their collected talents may be able to save the world.
Each one of them is special and unique, as well as very intelligent. They discover that they can make mind connections with each other and with nature.
The question is... can they use their combined power to save the world from itself? Will "normal" people let them do it? What is at the root of all this violence?
The four main characters (Miranda, Doug, Taryn and Elijah) are all very interesting in and of themselves. Today's teens can identify with the parental and authority figure issues that they all go through.
Some readers have told me they were a bit put out with how "over the top" the world violence and the mystical nature were. I have to admit that by the end of the novel, Taryn's ethereal qualities were getting to me just a little. But the story is very interesting and riveting despite those small things, and some readers will like the story all the more because of those very qualities.