implantedWhere Is Utopia?
by Heather Letto
Book II of the “Ascension Series,”,
Pb, 308 pp. ISBN-13: 978-1512369090 or ISBN-10: 1512369098. 2015 . 
$12.00 paperback and also available on Kindle.
Author Heather Letto believes in telling a story. She is married and the mother of two grown sons. Letto also has a blog and writes for Christian magazines, besides traveling throughout the country. Heather Letto’s writing style is double-spaced, with sparse dialogue. This brings the reader into the action, so when there is an exclamation mark, it really means something. The descriptions of life underground in a supposedly utopian society, and what is actually above ground are like night and day. The problem is: how to convince people underground of this.  Escape is the crux of the story.
If you haven't read Book I of Heather Letto’s young adult “Ascension” young adult book series, don't worry. You will catch on fast to what has happened and what is now happening in the adventures of people who have lived underground for generations  because they have been told there was a disaster aboveground.  The heroine is teenager Fran, also known as “Wolf” and a Rebel, plus her teacher, Chan. Fran's real name is Sarah. Companions are her boyfriend, Pete ("...the space between them opened up to a million miles and closed back to a few yards." )   They try to fight the administration in this underground world and sometimes they win and sometimes they loose.  Marcus is still the Ruler and “The Beast,” so named because people die quite young here, is also present. Fran’s brother, Ted, is still in the belief system of the government. Police are deadly holograms.
Now, we find Fran above world where she finds a new life but in order to really live it, has to go through a detox program.  The underground world still has a hold on people.  A new character is introduced, Retter (...a  detached powerhouse..."), son of the man who designed the underground world, only to see it taken over by ruthless people. There are many adventures with Fran, Retter and later, when they go back into the underground, with old friends still there. The technology described is fascinating---a synthetic society--- and using the air tubes for travel, makes one itch from the dust there. 
There is a religious design here.  The creator is the person who planned a perfect society only to have it taken over by a dictator who rules the underground, thinking the creator (above ground) is dead. When the creator’s son, without connection to the Underground, is born, there is the bridge between the two worlds. Exist in one (above), but not on file in the other (below). The person to instigate action is the girl, whose curiosity gets the better of her and starts the ball rolling.
Once you start reading these books, it is hard to put them down. From trying to find a misplaced cheeseburger to eat, or anything resembling food, to learning to blend in when the hologram police are near or not looking anyone in the eye, and knowing the dusty air tubes like the back of your hand, it is a survival. Will there be societies or a society?  All or nothing?
Book III, "The Imparting"  will be interesting, indeed, and is due at the end of 2015.
The Glossary is at the back of the book, plus discussion questions for groups.
Copyright 2015 Marie Asner
For a book review of Book I in the "Ascention" Series, see the following: