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Thursday, January 19, 2012

The Lens and the Looker


It’s the 24th century and humans, with the help of artificial intelligences (A.I.s) have finally created the perfect post-dystopian society. To make equally perfect citizens for this world, the elders have created History Camps, full sized recreations of cities from Earth’s distant pasts. Here teens live the way their ancestors did, doing the same dirty jobs and experiencing the same degradations. History Camps teach youths not to repeat the mistakes that almost caused the planet to die. But not everything goes to plan.

In this first of a trilogy, we meet three spoiled teens in the year 2347. Hansum almost 17, is good looking and athletic. Shamira, 15, is sassy, independent and an artistic genius. Lincoln, 14, is the smart-aleck. But you don’t have to scratch too far beneath the surface to find his insecurities.

These three “hard cases” refuse the valuable lessons History Camps teach. But when they are kidnapped and taken back in time to 1347 Verona, Italy, they only have two choices; adapt to the harsh medieval ways or die. The dangers are many, their enemies are powerful, and safety is a long way away. It’s hardly the ideal environment to fall in love – but that’s exactly what happens. In an attempt to survive, the trio risks introducing technology from the future. It could save them – or it could change history.

About Lory Kaufman

“I write Post-Dystopian fiction. After society’s collapse, which is imagined in so many great dystopian stories, humans will either fade into history, with the dinosaurs, or, if it learns the right lessons, society will go on to construct a civilization to last tens of thousands of years. History Camp stories are the exciting adventures of young people doing the latter.” -Lory Kaufman

On the artistic side of Lory’s career, he’s written, acted and directed children’s theatre and musical theatre. He enjoys art, especially sculpture. He loves science fiction and historical fiction and he has been deeply involved in the green movement all across North America. All this shows through when you read his work. Lory has three grown children and works and lives in Kingston, Canada.

To find out more about Lory visit

My Review:

I absolutely loved the concept of this novel for young adults, and being a huge fan of history, Mr. Kaufman does a fine job at keeping the reader as immersed in the time period as possible. What starts off as punishment for those three young teens for being a little too rowdy and cocky in their own classrooms as know-it-alls and practical jokes. Knowing that their A.I.'s can't physically harm them when they act up in class, they are sentenced to hard time in History Camp. Hansum knows the ins and outs because he has relatives that are enactors (people who are acting in the time period as characters) and have told him exactly the inside secrets of history camp.

However while attending the camp for two weeks is a premise, they soon learn once they arrive that they are there for a whole lot longer than they expected and they will have to adapt and learn the trades of old, for any chance at survival. It will take all their skills of working together to enable them to survive.

I received The Lens and The Looker compliments of Pump Up Your Book for my honest review and think it's a perfect way to incorporate a love of learning about history and still keeping it fun for young readers. I would easily rate this one a perfect 5 out of 5 stars. For more information on the author, the book and where you can pick up a copy of this book, please click on the link below:

The Lens and The Looker by Lory S Kaufman

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