You want an iPad. What would you do to get one? Many teens would get a part-time job: walking dogs, babysitting, working in a restaurant. Reasonable, socially acceptable options. Conversely, a 17-year-old in China recently sold his kidney to purchase an iPhone and iPad. In exchange for his kidney, he received about $3,500—enough to purchase these gadgets. The teen now suffers from renal insufficiency. In addition to raising questions about the black market for organs, this exchange has sparked discussions about the ever growing culture of consumerism—both in the United States and in other countries—and the extreme lengths to which we will go to get what we think we want. These titles explore our obsession with possessions:
In a future where most people have computer implants in their heads to control their environment, a boy meets an unusual girl who is in serious trouble.
When a plane crash strands thirteen teen beauty contestants on a mysterious island, they struggle to survive, to get along with one another, to combat the island’s other diabolical occupants, and to learn their dance numbers in case they are rescued in time for the competition.
Middle-schooler Theora Theremin and her brother Verbert find themselves whisked from the shores of hometown Lake Philodendron to an intergalactic beauty contest on Neptune.
Hunter Braque, a New York City teenager who is paid by corporations to spot what is “cool,” combines his analytical skills with girlfriend Jen’s creative talents to find a missing person and thwart a conspiracy directed at the heart of consumer culture.
Seventeen-year-old Josh, a loner-philosopher who wants to make a difference in the world, tries to maintain his secret identity as the author of a web site that is receiving national attention.