Thursday, June 17, 2010

Birthmarked by Caragh M. O'Brien

In the Enclave, your scars set you apart, and the newly born will change the future.
Sixteen-year-old Gaia Stone and her mother faithfully deliver their quota of three infants every month. But when Gaia’s mother is brutally taken away by the very people she serves, Gaia must question whether the Enclave deserves such loyalty.

I enjoyed this book fairly well. I didn’t love it, but I didn’t hate it, either. I think, really, that I won’t know how I truly feel about this story until after I’ve read the next book, because it’s obvious there will be a next book. But I am intrigued enough to want to read the next book, which is a good thing.

Gaia’s character is very na├»ve and accommodating, sometimes too much so. But she wasn’t raised to believe anything was potentially wrong with her way of life, and she trusts the Enclave implicitly. So I found this part of her personality believable. Her journey to discover what the Enclave is really like was both interesting and appealing, and her motivations fit the story well. She didn’t grow as much as I was hoping, but perhaps that will come in the next book.

Some of the plot elements didn’t make logical sense, like the lack of record keeping or the level of genetic testing available to the Enclave. I didn’t quite believe that the Enclave could do certain types of genetic testing but not others. And, considering how important genetics are to the Enclave, someone, somewhere, would have kept some kind of minimal record keeping of the advanced babies. At the very least, they would have kept track of who was related to whom. Also, the Enclave’s obsession with appearance and need for certain genetic backgrounds seem too conflicting. But, perhaps that will be further explained in the next book.

Still, I’m curious what will happen next, and will definitely read the next book. I’m hoping then I will be able to form a more solid opinion of whether or not this is a story I can recommend.

No comments: