pub date: November 8, 2011
publisher: Roaring Brook Press
source: for review at Kiss the Book Blog
appeals: dystopic, political, series,
content: there is some talk about sex, but not graphic--just that this is a book that talks about babies
I was worried about this book. I loved the first in the series, Birthmarked. And from Prized summary, I wasn't too excited about this one. I was afraid it would just be another dystopic society, another set of problems, a new set of characters. And didn't appeal to me. But I decided to take the risk of being disappointed.
And yay! I wasn't disappointed. I was enthralled. I still love Birthmarked more, but this one built on the previous story and I was so glad! I more especially glad because Leon was back! I was worried he wouldn't show up in this book, or if he did he wouldn't be in it very much. But he was in it, and it was a lot. YAY!
A lot of the plot is based on science, once again, which I really enjoyed. It surprises me how much I liked the science in Birthmarked and Prized. I think it adds a dimension to the story that is appealing. It's still about survival, but not with wars or food shortages or environmental issues like tsunamis and earthquakes. It's more about babies. Keeping the humans alive through future generations. Which is an interesting premise, especially for YA.
It is a new society, but just like with Enclave, it is so interesting and original. And aggravating, too. Some of those characters were just so hardheaded and I wanted to reach into the book and slap them unconscious. Which, you know, strong emotional responses to a book, even when it's aggravation, means it's doing it's job.
Overall, it was good.
However, it was also frustrating. Gaia wasn't my favorite in this book, nor did these few months of her story show her in the most flattering light. I didn't even much like her for half the book because of her decisions. She was one of the characters I wanted to slap. At one point she says to herself (paraphrased), "I've heard of love triangles, but never love squares!" Yes, that is correct. Not just two boys, but THREE. And if you know how I feel about triangles (I hate them) just imagine my disgust with a square! One of the things that I hate about love triangles is the girl leading on two boys. Make a decision! Stick with it! So when she leads on three boys, however unintentionally, it was annoying. UGH!
I loved how the book ended. It sets up the third in the trilogy so well and I am excited to see how it will end. I'm am hoping Gaia does not disappoint.
Striking out into the wasteland with nothing but her baby sister, a handful of supplies, and a rumor to guide her, sixteen-year-old midwife Gaia Stone survives only to be captured by the people of Sylum, a dystopian society where women rule the men who drastically outnumber them, and a kiss is a crime. In order to see her sister again, Gaia must submit to their strict social code, but how can she deny her sense of justice, her curiosity, and everything in her heart that makes her whole?