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Thursday, March 20, 2014

The Breeders by Katie French Review

Sixteen-year-old Riley Meemick is one of the world's last free girls. When Riley was born, her mother escaped the Breeders, the group of doctors using cruel experiments to bolster the dwindling human race. Her parents do everything possible to keep her from their clutches-- moving from one desolate farm after another to escape the Breeders' long reach. The Breeders control everything- the local war lords, the remaining factories, the fuel. They have unchecked power in this lawless society. And they're hunting Riley.

When the local Sheriff abducts the adult members of her family and hands her mother over to the Breeders, Riley and her eight-year-old brother, Ethan, hiding in a shelter, are left to starve. Then Clay arrives, the handsome gunslinger who seems determined to help to make up for past sins. The problem is Clay thinks Riley is a bender-- a genderless mutation, neither male nor female. As Riley's affection for Clay grows she wonders can she trust Clay with her secret and risk her freedom?

The three embark on a journey across the scarred remains of New Mexico-- escaping the Riders who use human sacrifice to appease their Good Mother, various men scrambling for luck, and a deranged lone survivor of a plague. When Riley is shot and forced into the Breeder's hospital, she learns the horrible fate of her mother—a fate she'll share unless she can find a way out

My rating: 3 stars
My review:
Breeders is a story about a young girl living in a futuristic America, due to a chemical the ability to bear females was lost by the population. I picked it up because I love Dystopian books, and it looked promising.
When Riley's home is ambushed by the law, her mother is taken to the breeders and she is desperate to find a way to get her mother back. With the help of her "enemy" a young boy named Clay, she sets out to get her mother back, This book is suspensful and has a great concept although I am not "wowed" by the presentation.
Here are a few reasons why, and they contain very little spoilers.
1. The actual premises to this world is not told until nearly halfway through the book. This leaves the reader wondering what the heck is going on during the first part of the book. It is confusing.
2. The character descriptions are vague. For example, her younger brother’s age is not told until towards the end. I was wondering the entire book how old he is. Is he 7 or 5 or is he older around 10? He is only stated as her younger brother. For a young child, knowing his age is crucial. Looks are also lightly touched on.
3. The world doesn't feel believable. The book states that by the time the government figured out what was going on, at the next census, it was too late and the damage had already been done. One census is not long enough to cause irreversible damage and what about the rest of the world? It never tells about if they were affected as well, but the book leads us to believe that they aren't. Can we not rebuild with other countries? We can pick baby gender right now, though it is done in a lab, why can this not be done in the book?
Though the concept sounds great, in reality, I don't think the breeding issues were well explained or thought out. 
4. Riley acts like a 10 year old. Though the writer is trying to make her out to be this strong heroine, she doesn't play out the role well on paper. She complains, whines, and makes terrible decisions that ultimately cause problems. She even throws things in the face of the boy who is helping her, Clay. She is quite immature and rude about it, and growing up in such a harsh world and reality, I don't understand why this character isn't more mature.
6. When they are rescued from the Breeders, they wait until they get to their destination before they take out her tracking device in the back of her neck, in what world does this happen? So they can track you all the way to where you are staying and then come get you? No way, that should have been the first thing to go.
There were other things that made no sense and were very irritating, but overall. I finished the book, it was a good storyline, the writing could be clearer and the characters could be better developed. I don’t think I am going to be reading book two, but a nice little read nonetheless. Click the link below to buy from amazon
The Breeders (The Breeders Series (Young Adult Dystopian))

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