What would happen if all the bees died? Bethany Wiggins has built such a world in Stung and it’s scary. No bees, very little green life, more men than women, and “beasts,” people whose goal is to kill. Fo has woken up in this world with little memory beyond her name, age, (which isn’t accurate according to her body) and fear. I was quickly sucked into this story. I’ve had both boys and girls reading this book at the library. There is plenty of action and danger to help a boy overcome any squeamishness at the thought of a girl protagonist. Between dealing with the militias, rogue gangs, beasts/hives, and sewer dwelling “Fecs,” Fo regains enough memory to help fill in the background of the world, and have a too quick start of a romance with Bowen, a boy from her old neighborhood. Readers will certainly need Cured, because the epilogue sets up the next book in this duology.
I’ve watched two of my students re-engage with books after reading this series, recommending Stung to their friends, and coming in for more to read. That’s winning in my world.
Fiona doesn’t remember going to sleep. But when she opens her eyes, she discovers her entire world has been altered—her house is abandoned and broken, and the entire neighborhood is barren and dead. Even stranger is the tattoo on her right hand—a black oval with five marks on either side—that she doesn’t remember getting but somehow knows she must cover at any cost. She’s right.
Those bearing the tattoo have turned into mindless, violent beasts that roam the streets and sewers, preying upon the unbranded while a select few live protected inside a fortress-like wall, their lives devoted to rebuilding society and killing all who bear the mark.
Now Fiona has awakened branded, alone—and on the wrong side of the wall.