eBook - 2013
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At an exclusive school somewhere outside of Arlington, Virginia, students aren't taught history, geography, or mathematics -- they are taught to persuade. Students learn to use language to manipulate minds, wielding words as weapons. The very best graduate as "poets," and enter a nameless organization of unknown purpose. Whip-smart runaway Emily Ruff is making a living from three-card Monte on the streets of San Francisco when she attracts the attention of the organization's recruiters. Drawn in to their strange world, which is populated by people named Brontë and Eliot, she learns their key rule: That every person can be classified by personality type, his mind segmented and ultimately unlocked by the skilful application of words. For this reason, she must never allow another person to truly know her, lest she herself be coerced. Adapting quickly, Emily becomes the school's most talented prodigy, until she makes a catastrophic mistake: She falls in love. Meanwhile, a seemingly innocent man named Wil Parke is brutally ambushed by two men in an airport bathroom. They claim he is the key to a secret war he knows nothing about, that he is an "outlier," immune to segentation. Attempting to stay one step ahead of the organization and its mind-bending poets, Wil and his captors seek salvation in the toxically decimated town of Broken Hill, Australia, which, if ancient stories are true, sits above an ancient glyph of frightening power.
Publisher: [New York] : Penguin Group US, 2013.
ISBN: 9781101604908
Branch Call Number: E-BOOK
Characteristics: 1 electronic text
Additional Contributors: OverDrive, Inc


From Library Staff

0Charlie Oct 29, 2014

I was pleased that I got more than I bargained for after reading the description. It was much more than a girl with strange powers goes to a special school. That was only a small part of the story. It took a long while to start piecing together the two story lines (an Aha! moment). It was excitin... Read More »

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Jun 15, 2017

No one warned me about the aging process, but it sure beats the alternative. For instance when I was a child my injuries healed. Today I am forced to quit sports I believed I couldn't survive without. First it was soccer, then running and finally I could not even do yoga. So on the wrong side of 40, walking the dogs and listening to audio books is all I have left. And for the first time in years it took me months to finish a paperback instead of days. This piece was probably five stars but I don't really remember it all. Now, no one had to tell me my memory would go. My face and mind were melted permanently by the time I saw the Glass Spider Tour at Kemper Arena. I was definitely showing signs of early onset alzheimer's by the time I stumbled into Irvine Meadows on August 1, 1992. But I'm still walking so I'm sure that I can dance, and read.

Sep 03, 2015

An exceptional novel, clever from start to finish. I found the plot continuing to evolve, with enough mystery to keep me enthralled throughout. The early chapters slowly lead to more complex details, and there are twists and dark forces which begin to appear. Unique storyline and far more than I expected when I picked up the book.

Chapel_Hill_KenMc Dec 22, 2014

Suspenseful, disturbing, and original world where words really do have power.

0Charlie Oct 29, 2014

I was pleased that I got more than I bargained for after reading the description. It was much more than a girl with strange powers goes to a special school. That was only a small part of the story. It took a long while to start piecing together the two story lines (an Aha! moment). It was exciting to have the "magical" power be words and knowledge. It has battles, love, schooling, betrayal, world dominion - something for everyone. Recommended for older teens and adults who enjoy sci-fi/ fantasy fiction.

Jul 23, 2014

This is an awesome book! Totally kept my interest from beginning to end. Creative concept. Smart writing!

lbsisson Jul 01, 2014

This shows as an audiobook but the download comes up as an ebook.

LibraryK8 Mar 14, 2014

Emily and Wil's stories come together in an explosive and thrilling ending! I would recommend this to anyone who liked The Rook or Ready Player One.

Feb 16, 2014

WAY more intense then I had anticipated! Creative story telling, but at times I was lost as to the sequence of events. By the end it was easy to figure out, but there were a couple of rough part towards the end.

Jan 22, 2014

I was perilously close to putting this one down while reading the relatively generic thriller/kidnapping fare of the first chapter but now I'm glad I kept plowing on, the second narrative arc about the recruitment of a teenaged runaway really drew me in, though the temporal bounce-around throughout might be aggravating for some. Lastly, the epilogue was most unfortunate, but on the whole, a worthwhile read by a talented young author.

Bhulsey Jan 02, 2014

Max Barry has done it again with a rip-roaring sci-fi tale of love, language, control, freedom, paranoia, thought, and violence in his latest novel Lexicon.

Lexicon is a brilliant work, fast paced and full of interestingly broken characters. Barry's insights into freedom and information and vocabulary are intriguing and the various shifts in time make things interesting to follow. But the ride is well worth it. Highly recommended

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LibraryK8 Mar 14, 2014

This story starts with a bang! Wil Jamieson is grabbed by two guys in an airport bathroom. They stick a needle in his eye, ask him a bunch of questions and tell him if he wants to live he has to come with them. Wil gathers from their conversation that he in an important piece in a war they are fighting. Wars have casualties, and before they escape the airport one kidnapper and Wil's girlfriend are dead. Barely trusting Eliot, Wil takes off cross country as a fugitive, trying to discover what makes him so special.

Years earlier in San Francisco, Emily is a resourceful teen, living of her skills as monte dealer. Emily uses her skills of persuasion to push her marks to get in the game, and raise the stakes. When she is offered her a chance at a prestigious school on the east coast to learn a much more deadly form of persuasion she jumps at the chance.

The School teaches Emily an craft based on ancient languages and brain anatomy. Like computers our brains run on an operating system, and like computers the wrong line of code and crack it open. At The School, Emily learns the words and sounds that can hack our heads, and leave us vulnerable to persuasion. But with great power comes great responsibility and when a Bare Word is released in Australia it kills nearly 3,000 people, and Emily is held accountable.

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