A young adult dystopian novel with a different twist. Years ago, a disease wiped out the entire male population, and a lot of the women. Now only women survive and reproduce through genetic engineering. They live in Sectors, abandoned hospitals, schools and other large buildings. The women follow a strict set of rules including not touching that were designed to bring peace, end war and stop the spread of the disease, which men were blamed for; even though the women fight and believe themselves to be in a war with the women who choose to live outside, the Earthers. The enforcers of the rules for each Sector is the Matriarch. Mary lives in Section 1 with a very strict Matriarch. She has never even seen a boy, not even in her biology textbooks, they've been cut out. When Section 7 is bombed, a new person comes to sector one. Taylor has hidden his identity his whole life, but when he meets Mary, he feels...different.
This story is told from the alternating points of view of Mary and Taylor. This makes for a quick-paced read. The plot, for a YA dystopian story was unique. The world and how it works was explained well, I usually have a lot of questions about these questionable worlds, but the disease, reproduction and the hierarchy of the society was explained fairly well. My favorite character was actually Taylor, he grew up hiding who he was his entire life and at seventeen that will start to become more and more difficult. At Section 1, coming out as a boy is extremely dangerous, so it was very interesting to see Taylor's decision making process and this time and how he finds his role in the matriarchal society. The Earthers were another interesting part, living off the Earth and keeping their secrets buried underground. The plot twist with the Matriarch was great! I do wish that the immunity with the disease was explained at the end, but that's it.
This book was received for free return for an honest review.