There is a wonderful website called Netgalley.com. I’ve very briefly mentioned it in a somewhat recent post. I’ve downloaded a few books from there and read them on either the computer or my new Kindle. Due to the portability issue, I prefer reading them on the Kindle, of course. Unfortunately, not all of the publishers share their galleys in Kindle’s e-reader format. Ah, well.
What books did I read? So far three of them:
- Plan B (Surviving Southside) by Charnan Simon
- Bumped by Megan McCafferty
- The Last Little Blue Envelope by Maureen Johnson
Plan B is part of a series of short teen books called Surviving Southside. Lucy has life planned. She will graduate high school and go to college in Austin, ultimately becoming a Spanish teacher. She and her boyfriend will get married and life will be great. But then, life doesn’t always go according to plan. Even though the couple is careful, Lucy ends up pregnant and now needs to come up with a new plan for her life.
Realistic – sure. Teen pregnancy is far from a thing of the past. The shortness of the story, however, left me feeling like the story was unfinished. This was such an issue that I checked to make sure that it wasn’t just an excerpt of a longer novel. It does leave room for lots of discussion, though, both due to the story itself and the way it ends.
I honestly wasn’t planning on a theme when I picked the next netgalley.com book I finished reading. Bumped is also a story of teenage pregnancy. That is really where the similarities end.
A virus has swept the world leaving people over the ages of 18-20 infertile. In order to keep the human race from dying out, teenage girls are urged to get pregnant. At sixteen, Melody is getting closer and closer to running out of bumping opportunities. This is even more frustrating to her considering the extremely lucrative deal her adoptive parents have brokered for her (and her uterus). Her egg’s future parents, who picked her due to her uniqueness, have taken their time picking out the perfect sperm donor. Time is running out.
When Melody’s long lost twin sister arrives at her front door, it is all she can do to keep her hidden from the rest of her world. Harmony’s existence can ruin her prime deal. Melody just wants her sister to go back to Goodside – the ultraconservative religious community where she was raised. Unfortunately, Harmony is there on a mission – to keep Melody from being bumped – especially for profit. But when Melody is finally matched with the world famous hunk Jondoe, Harmony’s own secrets and a case of mistaken identity are causes for some self realization for both of the girls.
Another dystopian novel, though with a twist (the teen pregnancy aspect). The story is told with each sister narrating in alternating chapters. This I liked. The slang was a bit annoying at times, and the ending is not very conclusive.
The third book I read will have to wait for another post. This one is getting long enough…and it isn’t about teenage pregnancy.