Glowby Amy Kathleen Ryan
Sky Chasers, book one
If a violent battle destroyed the only world you’ve ever known, would you be brave enough to save who was left? Would love be strong enough to survive the fight? Either way, there’s no turning back.
The Empyrean is the only home 15-year-old Waverly has ever known. Part of the first generation to be successfully conceived in deep space, she and her boyfriend Kieran will be pioneers of New Earth. Waverly knows she must marry young in order to have children who can carry on the mission, and Kieran, the handsome captain-to-be, has everything Waverly could want in a husband. Everyone is sure he’s the best choice. Still, there’s a part of Waverly that wants more from life than marriage, and she is secretly intrigued by the shy, darkly brilliant Seth.
Suddenly, Waverly’s dreams are interrupted by the inconceivable – a violent betrayal by the Empyrean's sister ship, the New Horizon. The New Horizon’s leaders are desperate to populate the new planet first, and will do anything to get what they need: young girls. In one pivotal moment, Waverly and Kieran are separated, and find themselves at the helm of dangerous missions, where every move has potentially devastating consequences, and decisions of the heart may lead to disaster. (description from Amazon.com)
Whoa. This book got me from page one and I could NOT put it down. It was compelling, it was creepy, it was... it just was. I sat down and I read and read and read and read.
The characters were great. Kids put into the most difficult of situations...the adults they relied upon have been either killed or taken from them, and now they must take on roles that none of them are truly prepared for... Kieran steps up as "Captain," only to be overthrown by his rival, Seth. Waverly and all the other girls have been kidnapped to be used to populate the other ship that knows it will slowly die out if they cannot procreate...
Each of the teens must decide what their role will be in their new existence. Though they continuously hope to reunite with the remaining parents, they must learn to survive for themselves until that becomes a possibility. There's a little bit of a "Lord of the Flies" thing going on here...
While there is most certainly the start of a love triangle here, what I loved about this book was that there was so much development into why each character would have developed into the person that they've become that they are each strong on their own. No one person is willing to be defined by their relationship to anyone else. While the romantic feelings are a strong factor for the teens trying to reunite, it is not ultimately in any way the driving force that leads them.
With scary themes about morality, experimentation, and societal expectations, Glow was one of those books that I thought about for weeks after I read it. Things just kept rolling around in the back of my head and popping back up to the surface. It was powerful that way.
For that, I bestow an "I can't stop thinking about it" GOLD STAR!!
Full disclosure: ARC originally sent by the publisher for review