Review: Eve

I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: EveEve by Anna Carey
Series: Eve #1
Published by HarperTeen on October 4, 2011
Genres: Adventure, Dystopian, Romance, Science Fiction
Pages: 336
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley

Where do you go when nowhere is safe?

Sixteen years after a deadly virus wiped out most of Earth's population, the world is a perilous place. Eighteen-year-old Eve has never been beyond the heavily guarded perimeter of her school, where she and two hundred other orphaned girls have been promised a future as the teachers and artists of the New America. But the night before graduation, Eve learns the shocking truth about her school's real purpose and the horrifying fate that awaits her.

Fleeing the only home she's ever known, Eve sets off on a long, treacherous journey, searching for a place she can survive. Along the way she encounters Arden, her former rival from school, and Caleb, a rough, rebellious boy living in the wild. Separated from men her whole life, Eve has been taught to fear them, but Caleb slowly wins her trust... and her heart. He promises to protect her, but when soldiers begin hunting them, Eve must choose between true love and her life. 

In this epic new series, Anna Carey imagines a future that is both beautiful and terrifying.

Undoubtedly, the most terrifying dystopias for me personally are the ones that involve the role of women in society after a calamity. Eve falls in with the like of Wither, The Handmaid’s Tale, and Bumped. If reproductivity suffers, if a large segment of the population dies in some horrific event, if people are dying off younger, then women quickly lose the status they fought for decades to accomplish and become property, needed only to push out babies.

This subset of dystopias is terrifying largely because it requires very little suspension of disbelief to imagine such things coming to pass should something catastrophic occur. For all that women are much more equal now, I have no doubt that our position would not revert back to slavery and breeding chattel swiftly if that was viewed as the only way to save mankind from extinction. What’s worse is that on some level, that response does make sense. What if that really was the only way for mankind to survive? I like to think there would be other ways, but what if there weren’t? Is it worth it?

In Eve, the population was decimated by a plague. Many perished, including Eve’s mother. Orphans, of which there were many, were gathered up and put into schools and educated until they were old enough to be of use one way or another. In Eve’s school, she and her classmates are taught about the evil ways of men, of how they only want one thing and of the dangers of falling in love. They teach these lessons with examples from literature, such as Romeo and Juliet and Anna Karenina.

For the most part, this was a really interesting read, although I did find my attention waning as I got further into the story. There was a lot of running around and not a lot of plot advancement. One weird thing was a scene where Eve mentioned that she didn’t remember the date of her birthday, although she did remember her mom singing a birthday song to her. Eve was young when the plague hit and she went into the school, where birthdays were not celebrated, but what kid does not remember their birthday? I mean, come on. If she was old enough at the time to have such clear memories of her mom, then she would totally remember when her birthday was.

All in all, a decent dystopian read and a chilling view of how quickly the status of women could fall. I sure hope nothing like this comes to pass.


2 responses to “Review: Eve”

  1. Steena says:

    There’s an episode of Sliders that deals with this sort of dystopia, population catastrophe, have to make babies. Except that a stronger breed is desired to make sure we survive, so the finest male specimens are rounded up (like chattel) and the childbearing women are treated like royalty. Also not a great situation, but an interesting role reversal.

  2. I adored this book & ARCS of the 2nd in the series “Once” are out! Jealous!
    I adored Handmaids Tale too. I think I will re buy it to re read it. A classic.

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