by Sleator, William

Now in paperback!
Pass, and have it made. Fail, and suffer the consequences. A master of teen thrillers tests readers' courage in an edge-of-your-seat novel that echoes the fears of exam-takers everywhere.
Ann, a teenage girl living in the security-obsessed, elitist United States of the very near future, is threatened on her way home from school by a mysterious man on a black motorcycle. Soon she and a new friend are caught up in a vast conspiracy of greed involving the mega-wealthy owner of a school testing company. Students who pass his test have it made; those who don't, disappear . . . or worse. Will Ann be next?
For all those who suspect standardized tests are an evil conspiracy, here's a thriller that really satisfies!
Praise for Test
"Fast-paced with short chapters that end in cliff-hangers . . . good read for moderately reluctant readers. Teens will be able to draw comparisons to contemporary society's shift toward standardized testing and ecological concerns, and are sure to appreciate the spoofs on NCLB." -School Library Journal
"Part mystery, part action thriller, part romance . . . environmental and political overtones . . . fast pace and unique blend of genres holds attraction for younger teen readers." -Booklist

For more than thirty years, William Sleator has thrilled readers with his inventive books that blend real science with stories that explore our darkest fears and wishes. His House of Stairs was a groundbreaking book for young adults, and was named one of the best novels of the twentieth century by the Young Adult Library Services Association. Critics call his writing "clever and engrossing . . . and just plain fun" (Booklist) and "gleefully icky" (Publishers Weekly). He divides his time between homes in Boston and Thailand.

Seventeen-year-old Ann's future will be determined by a high-school exit test. If she passes the XCAS, she will graduate from high school, go to college, and be granted opportunities for a better life. If she fails, she will join the masses struggling to survive the city's squalor. Needless to say, the XCAS is Ann's primary focus until the day a menacing man on a motorcycle with a strange logo follows her home from school. When a boy at school appears wearing a shirt with that same logo and is too frightened to speak with her, Ann is compelled to find out what or who is behind the logo, and why she is being followed. As she digs deeper, Ann is led right back to the XCAS. Part mystery, part action thriller, part romance, this is also a mild dystopian story with the requisite environmental and political overtones. Although it may lack the necessary depth and literary sophistication to engage older teens, its fast pace and unique blend of genres holds attraction for younger teen readers. Copyright 2008 Booklist Reviews.

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