I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Series: Glimpsing Stars #1
Genres: Dystopia, Post-Apocalyptic
» Buy on Amazon
» Buy on Barnes & Noble
In a world ravaged by a nuclear holocaust, Vika Cannon knows there are no guarantees: no guarantees of safety, no guarantees that your neighbor is not actually a spy for the government, and no guarantees you'll be allowed to emigrate to a new life in China.
New Amana is dying. Food and water are scarce, and people suffering from radiation-caused mutations--the Nukeheads--are the new class of homeless.
Vika has just one purpose: to produce healthy progeny using a Husband assigned by the Match Clinic. Unhealthy children are carted away to Asylums to be experimented on, just as Vika's little sister Ceres was, eight years ago. Parents incapable of producing healthy progeny are put to death in gas chambers.
When she's assigned a Husband shortly after her twentieth birthday, Vika expects him to be complacent and obedient. But Shale Underwood has a secret. He is a member of the Radicals, the terrorist group intent on overthrowing the government. And Shale has information about Ceres.
As she learns more about the Rads's plan, Vika finds herself drawn to Shale in ways she'd never imagined. When freedom calls in the way of a healthy pregnancy, will she betray her government and risk death for Shale and Ceres?
World of Shell and Bone is a novel about a post-apocalyptic dystopian world where most of the world has been wiped out by nuclear war. A new society survives in the Americas, called New Amana, but they are subservient to the war’s victors: China. The society is led by women, and men are related to slave status. This totalitarian government rules the people with an iron fist. Children are disposed of if they are deemed defective, and adults may be killed if they are suspected of being treasonous or if they fail to produce offspring for society. Vika, a young woman in this society struggles to become pregnant and earn her a spot on ships sending workers to China. But throughout her struggles she begins questioning the society she grew up in and can no longer turn a blind eye to the injustices of it all, especially when she learns about what the government did to her sister.
Right off the bat I had some trouble buying into this world. How can there be a nuclear war to wipe out most of the Earth and yet China escape unharmed? I think if China attacked the U.S., China would get it’s share of nukes in retaliation. And it would be unlikely that every country on the globe would be wiped out, but none are talked about other than New Amana and Asia. And there is some speculating that the government of New Amana may be planning an army to attack China (as if they could ever win against a country of 1.3 billion). And the book initially takes a very feminist voice but eventually that tones down as it is shown that men aren’t completely spineless in this world.
But overlooking all of that, the writing is very well done and the plot moves along at a good pace. Characters are well developed and believable. I found myself getting immersed into the story and enjoying it, though it was often dark and depressing at times. Vika has a slow awakening to what is going on in her world, and really grows in her morality. I was happy with the ending and looking forward to seeing what happens in the sequel.
I really don’t think this book is YA…maybe older teens perhaps. There is discussion and depiction of rape, torture, murder, and a few characters spew profanity quite proficiently.