Numbers Game (Numbers Game #1) by Rebecca Rode
Age Group: Young Adult
Release Date: March 16, 2015
Treena can’t wait for Rating Day. Her high score will mean a life of luxury, showing the world that she’s a valuable member of society, not a pathetic waste of space.
It won’t hurt her chances with her top-Rated boyfriend, either. But when the big day arrives, her true number shocks everyone.
To get her life—and boyfriend—back, she must go undercover and expose a military spy. Doesn’t sound too hard, except that someone seems to want her dead. And then there’s the mysterious soldier with a haunted past and beautiful brown eyes.
Together, they discover a dark numbers conspiracy, one that shatters the nation’s future. They must band together if they are to survive the dangerous game of numbers—and the terrible war that rages within Treena’s heart.
Will you tell us about Numbers Game?
Absolutely! In the New Order Republic of America, 16-year-olds are given a Rating, a number that encompasses what they’re worth to society. It determines their career, living conditions, and potential partners. This is the story of Treena, who gets a different Rating than the one she earned. She decides to fight for what is rightfully hers, determined to get her boyfriend back in the process.
Meanwhile, she meets Vance, a mysterious prisoner-turned-soldier who has his own agenda. When someone tries to kill Treena—twice—they uncover a dark conspiracy that risks much more than Treena’s Rating.
Great. You probably get this question a lot, but the concept is so unique that I have to ask—where did you get the idea for Numbers Game?
I love this question! My husband sent me to the bank to finalize the loan on the truck he was buying. I looked at my credit score and thought how strange it was that one number was supposed to incorporate everything about me—my purchase history, how reliable I’d been, whether they could trust me to make payments, that sort of thing. And then I thought how strange it was, that we as citizens are so trusting of the accuracy of that little number, and how important it is in our lives. It spiraled from there—what is someone was manipulating the numbers? What if the number included appearance and intelligence rather than just financial history? It didn’t take long for the plot to unfold in my mind.
What type of reader would like this book?
A: I tell people that it’s like a thriller version of The Scarlet Letter, but set in the future. With bombs. And kissing. Dystopian fans who like Divergent, Hunger Games, and Matched would love it.
Who is your favorite character and why?
At first, Tali was my favorite. She knows exactly what she wants and doesn’t put up with anything. But now that the book is done, I think Vance has overtaken her as my favorite. The way he sees the world and struggles to survive while torn between two worlds really resonates with me.
What was your favorite part of the writing process? What was the hardest?
I really enjoyed taking an idea and running with it. Once I had the world solidified in my head, it was fun to explore all the different aspects of it—political, social, financial, emotional, etc. I wrote myself into a dozen corners because I was just having too much fun.
The hardest part? Probably the time it took to finish it. When I began writing Numbers Game in 2012, I was also juggling a journalism career and three kids, and then my nonfiction book was accepted for publication, so that took all my remaining hours. When my fourth child was born, everything came to a screeching halt for a while. It wasn’t until Numbers Game won first place in a statewide writing contest in that I decided to buckle down and get serious with it.
Why did you decide to make it a series instead of a stand-alone book?
A: You know how some authors say that their characters grab hold of the story and steer it in a different direction without their permission? That’s kind of what happened here. It just couldn’t end with this book. There was so much more that needed to be explored. Besides, Treena had a little more growing to do, and I think you’ll love the person that she becomes.
Thanks for joining us. Where can we find out more?
A: Visit my website at www.AuthorRebeccaRode.com or sign up for my monthly newsletter at http://eepurl.com/bdwUKL. I give away free stuff sometimes, if you’re into that type of thing. But remember, Numbers Game is only discounted on Amazon for a few days, so you may want to snatch it up quick.
REBECCA RODE is an award-winning author, journalist, and mother of four. She is the author of the YA dystopian novel, NUMBERS GAME, and the inspirational book, HOW TO HAVE PEACE WHEN YOU'RE FALLING TO PIECES.
She also writes for Deseret News, KSL.com, FamilyShare, and Provo Daily Herald. However, her true love is writing for teenagers. She enjoys traveling, reading, and martial arts, and she has a ridiculous addiction to chocolate-banana shakes.