The second book in Caragh M. O’Brien’s Birthmarked trilogy, Prized was pretty good. Standard dystopian fare, once again, with a female as the lead character. I am seeing an increasing amount of dystopian literature that revolves around exploitation of young females. (The Selection series, The Chemical Garden series, Uglies trilogy, Matched trilogy…) While I enjoy these books, I am concerned about this growing trend, and how it will affect young girls. But, I am getting ahead of myself a little here.
When last we saw Gaia, she had escaped from the Enclave with her newborn baby sister, Maya. After two weeks of traveling across the Waste Lands, the two sisters are starving and week. A man comes upon them and takes them to his community of Sylum. (There are lots of “our” words that have been hybridized for this book). Once in the community, Gaia discovers that the women are in charge, and dying off. Gaia has to relinquish her sister to the Matrarc (told you). Gaia manages to make herself useful to the community by being a midwife, but also manages to alienate herself by being headstrong and ignoring the laws. Add to that, an old familiar face shows up, and Gaia unexpectedly finds herself in a love square.
The book is interesting; there are some good plot points in the book. But, I would have to give it just a three out of five stars, and am not sure if I will read the third. The same ground seems to be covered over and over within this genre, and I find myself liking the genre less and less. I can no longer read dystopian literature back to back, like I could when I first discovered these books. But, that’s me.