When a virus makes everyone over the age of eighteen infertile, would-be parents pay teen girls to conceive and give birth to their children, making teens the most prized members of society. Girls sport fake baby bumps and the school cafeteria stocks folic-acid-infused food.
Sixteen-year-old identical twins Melody and Harmony were separated at birth and have never met until the day Harmony shows up on Melody’s doorstep. Up to now, the twins have followed completely opposite paths. Melody has scored an enviable conception contract with a couple called the Jaydens. While they are searching for the perfect partner for Melody to bump with, she is fighting her attraction to her best friend, Zen, who is way too short for the job.
Harmony has spent her whole life in Goodside, a religious community, preparing to be a wife and mother. She believes her calling is to convince Melody that pregging for profit is a sin. But Harmony has secrets of her own that she is running from.
When Melody is finally matched with the world-famous, genetically flawless Jondoe, both girls’ lives are changed forever. A case of mistaken identity takes them on a journey neither could have ever imagined, one that makes Melody and Harmony realize they have so much more than just DNA in common.
From New York Times bestselling author Megan McCafferty comes a strikingly original look at friendship, love, and sisterhood—in a future that is eerily believable.
I liked how each chapter started with both characters names. The name that was the right way on the page was the character whose point of view the chapter was written in and the upside down one was the opposite sister. It is almost like they were mirror images of each other, they may look the same but their early life was so different, but for all that they still shared a lot of similarities and feelings about being expected to preg, get pregnant and give birth to a child.
In this future society, everyone is connected by technology all the time by the MiNet. Almost a what if scenario based on how in touch people already are now and there are issues of how much of a good thing this is. There are classes of students based on if they are having babies professionally, in a deal brokered by agents with money passing hands, or if they are amateurs who are doing it on their own.
The future of society rests with the very young and they are perhaps not as well equipped to deal with it all as they seem. The stigma of teenage pregnancy is not if it happens to you, but if it hasn't yet. Why are you wasting your good years? You should be pregging for profit to pay for a good college and ensure your own future so you will have the money to pay down the line when you are ready to become a parent to your own child.
On the flip side in Goodside the church has very little technology and stresses marriage early on to have a blessed union in which to bring the new generation in. It is almost as if they use no technology as a stand against Otherside.
I had not realized that this book was the beginning of a series, so I was a little disappointed when I got to the end and there was no resolution. I think had I known beforehand that I would have been fine with it, but I never read much about the book prior to starting to read it so I was surprised. I'll be looking forward to the next one to see how the events from this one play out.
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Publication date: 4/26/2011
Age range: 14 - 17 Years