Extras – Scott Westerfeld

“Aya Fuse was an expert at being invisible. Her face rank was proof of that. It sat unmoving in the corner of her vision, 451,396.
She let out a sigh, In a city of a million that was total extra-hand.she;d had her own feed for almost two years now, had kicked a great story just a week ago, and was still anonymous.”

*Contains Spoilers for the whole Uglies series, beware!*

Ever since the mind-rain three years ago Aya’s city has become obsessed with fame. The way to get merits? The way to find yourself in the nice part of town? The way to get the best guys? All by becoming as famous as possible and making yourself pretty as soon as you hit 16.

At least that’s what Aya thinks. Her brother is one of the most famous “kickers” who has become snobbish and big headed since he found fame but Aya wants to get there too. She wants to have a huge face rank, she wants the best in town.
Aya finds her big story, the kick that’s going to make her even more famous than her big brother. But with that kick she finds herself in serious danger, and in the company of the most famous person in the world – Tally Youngblood. In Tally’s company she finds herself in even more danger, hiding from inhumans and realising that the huge story she’s uncovering may not be the right sequel to her first big one. She needs to find out the truth, and fast.
I love the Uglies series. I love the world, the ideas behind the story, the characters, the feeling that reading the books gives me. However Extras was a little different from the first 3 and not particularly in a good way. Everything I loved about the previous books was still there, the way the world and society had made people behave a certain way. Only in this new world no-one was forcing anyone to do anything, you could get a pretty face, you could leave your own, if didn’t matter so much. However Aya’s character bugged me; she was childish and selfish and determined to get her own way. At the beginning of this book I really didn’t like her. She grew on me though, kinda like a small cousin who just won’t leave you alone, and by the end of the book I didn’t hate her anymore.
The way that Aya’s city worked, the kicks and things made me pose similarities between the world that we live in now and the world that Aya’s city was creating. Specials saw Tally wanting to keep an eye on things, making sure everyone didn’t go back to the way Rusties were and I could really see this in action in Aya’s city. Nana Love was just like our equivalent of Paris Hilton, or along similar lines, she was famous for nothing really and everyone cared about what she did and what she wore. I don’t really do the whole celebrity thing now, I had to try hard to even think of someone Nana Love would be the equivalent of, so I really didn’t like that, but I guess it makes you relate more to the fact that Aya’s city really was “brain-missing!” I was so connected to the similarities of Aya’s city to our world now that I didn’t even realise that it was Japan for a while, I just assumed it was the same kinda place that Tally lived! I can be a bit slow sometimes!! 
The idea at the end of Specials excited me and I had no idea where Scott Westerfeld was going to take the story. I could understand that leaving people to do what they wanted meant that they were offering a one-way ticket back to rusty times though so I was excited to see what kinda things Tally and David were going to be fighting against. I loved where the story went though, the way that people were using too many resources and expanding too much for the planet to handle. Also I loved the “inhumans” the descriptions of these things were so clear in my mind, and I like the way their surges have meaning, unlike the various ones taken on by the people in Diego (in Specials) and in Aya’s city.
I also loved the ending. I don’t want to spoil it for anyone so I won’t say any more! As I was getting to the end of Specials I thought that it was pretty much the end of the story. I couldn’t think of any more that could go on, but then when Tally and David did what they did I knew that there was a need for the story of the world’s future. Extras ending bring a future, a way for everything to carry on, but in a better way than Specials did, in a way that I’m happy knowing that that is the end, I’m fine with the story stopping there.  
I wish I owned these books. I love them so much but I only actually have the first. If I had them I would be thrusting them onto every person I know, instead I’m just bugging the hell out of everyone that will listen, telling them they must read the series as soon as possible!  I know I’m happy with where this story ends but I’m really not happy too because it’s over. However I know that I will go on to read more of Scott Westerfeld’s stuff, I love, and I am in awe of, his imagination and I know that anything I read of his will have that effect on me! 
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