Thursday, January 29, 2009

The Declaration by Gemma Malley (12/81)

Category: Dystopia

In the near future people live forever taking a drug called Longevity, but because of population growth putting a strain on the world's resources, anyone taking the drug must sign "The Declaration" that prevents them from having children. This book is about the children born as "Surpluses" whose parents broke the law in giving birth to them.

This is a Young Adult book, which I don’t normally read, but it was a good fit with my dystopia theme. The society presented here is as plausible as any created in the adult dystopian novels I’ve read, but the execution of it is much more simple. The narrator outlines most of the principles of the society straightaway, so you don’t have to try to figure things out for yourself. Therefore, despite it being a thought-provoking read, it was a very easy read. It reminded me of “Never Let Me Go” by Kazuo Ishiguro as that is written from a similar perspective, but it lacked that book’s subtlety and it lacked that book’s emotional power.

There was also a “twist” in this story, which I thought was obvious, but I did think the ending was very good. However, I see there is a sequel and I’m not sure that I will rush to read that, as I think the dystopian element that attracted me to this book was explored fully here.

No comments: