Friday, June 12, 2015

Blog Tour/Review: The Charity Chip by Brock Booher

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The Charity Chip, by Brock Booher
2015, 288p, Clean YA Suspense
My Rating=5 Stars
Source: Received a copy from the publisher for an honest review

Life on the streets of Lima is already difficult for Julio, but now that digital money has replaced hard currency, survival is virtually impossible. Isak comes to his rescue and offers him a chance at a better life through a hi-tech humanitarian program. The only catch is a microchip implanted between the thumb and forefinger of the hand. At first life improves dramatically, but when another participant dies mysteriously, Julio suspects that the chip does more than just dispense charity. Now he must uncover the truth behind the charity chip before someone else suffers the same fate.

Julio's mother's dying wish was for him to take care of his twin brother, Raul. Raul, however, got involved with a gang and wasn't interested in helping Julio keep that promise. When Julio was caught stealing food, a man named Isak came to his rescue and made him an offer he couldn't refuse. All he needed to do was pass a physical and allow a chip to be implanted in his hand. Julio would keep food in his belly and be able to purchase other items he needed. He also had the freedom to live where he wanted so he was able to return to Raul each night and feed him, too, even though Isak didn't know he had a twin brother.

Things went well for a while and it was interesting to read how different life was for Julio between when he was going hungry and scrounging around for food and clothes and how he felt when he had food in his belly and the means to purchase whatever he needed. It didn't take long, though, for him to suspect that something else was going on and he quickly needed to figure out the truth behind the chip before it was too late.

Julio was easy to cheer for since he was likable and did the right thing no matter what it cost him personally. He was loyal to his brother, even when his brother made some not so great choices. This book is full of action and suspense and was hard to put down. It was also thought-provoking and pointed out the issues that arise when money is thrown at a problem but the people who need it aren't the ones that benefit from it. There were some twists and turns so it didn't turn out exactly like I thought it would, but I did enjoy the ending.

I loved this author's debut novel, Healing Stone (you can read more about it here), so I was excited to learn he had published another book. This book did not disappoint so he is officially on my list of favorite authors and I'm looking forward to reading what he comes up with next!

Brock Booher grew up on a farm in rural Kentucky, the fourth of ten children, where he learned to work hard, use his imagination, and believe in himself. He left the farm to pursue the friendly skies as a pilot, and currently flies for a major US carrier. A dedicated husband and father of six children, he began writing out of sheer arrogance, but the writing craft quickly humbled him. During that process, he discovered that he enjoyed writing because it is an endeavor that can never quite be mastered. He still gladly struggles everyday to improve his writing and storytelling skills.


Brock Booher said...

Thanks! I'm glad you enjoyed the story.

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