Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Review: Glow by Amy Kathleen Ryan

I received this book from St. Martin's Griffin.
Hardcover, 307 pages

Expected publication: September 13th 2011 by St. Martin's Griffin 
YA Dystopian

What if you were bound for a new world, about to pledge your life to someone you'd been promised to since birth, and one unexpected violent attack made survival—not love—the issue?

Out in the murky nebula lurks an unseen enemy: the New Horizon. On its way to populate a distant planet in the wake of Earth's collapse, the ship's crew has been unable to conceive a generation to continue its mission. They need young girls desperately, or their zealous leader's efforts will fail. Onboard their sister ship, the Empyrean, the unsuspecting families don't know an attack is being mounted that could claim the most important among them...

Fifteen-year-old Waverly is part of the first generation to be successfully conceived in deep space; she was born on the Empyrean, and the large farming vessel is all she knows. Her concerns are those of any teenager—until Kieran Alden proposes to her. The handsome captain-to-be has everything Waverly could ever want in a husband, and with the pressure to start having children, everyone is sure he's the best choice. Except for Waverly, who wants more from life than marriage—and is secretly intrigued by the shy, darkly brilliant Seth.

But when the Empyrean faces sudden attack by their assumed allies, they quickly find out that the enemies aren't all from the outside.--Goodreads

My Review
So Glow is one of those books that makes me over think things. I loved how this book brought out such strong reactions from me but those kind of things are hard to write about and share with the public because they are so personal. Well the reasoning behind the reaction that is. Not only is it personal but emotions are hard to explain (for me anyway) and it doesn’t always make sense on paper/screen or to others. So how do I explain how much I love this book with out over stating thing, being judgmental and insulting to some readers or having to explain my reasoning. I don’t know but I’m going to take a crack at it. Here is what I think in general.

This book was a fantastic read! I was excited the whole time and couldn’t put the book down. I’m not into space and science fiction but this book was really focused on the survival of the human race and moving to New Earth. So you don’t get too much of the Si-Fi feel to this story. I mean you know these people are in space and they are always looking out into the Nebula but there are no aliens invading the spaceships. There were a lot of strong characters but I think that is always the case in the dystopian genre other wise how would the characters stay alive so long. Ok so I’m rambling lets get to the next issues of the book. The controversial topics placed in this book are reproduction via artificial insemination and religion.

Reproduction is the biggest worry on these ships. In this story there are only two ships and one has found a way to reproduce naturally and on the other the woman have lost the ability to produce viable eggs. So this is the root of all the horrible things that happens in this book. I feel reproduction it’s self is not controversial but what make it controversial in this book is what happens to the girls in this story in order to insure the future of the human race.

 There is a lot of emphasis of religion in this book. It is carefully expressed  but you get the over all impression that there is some believe in a higher being. It is not a struggle of who’s denominations is right but the belief that there has to be a meaning to all their sacrifice and struggle and that God has a plan for everybody.  This is how they find their will to go on. Horrific things have been done in the name of God in this book so it makes me a little uncomfortable when the children are left with the notion that God is the only positive way to look towards the future. The main character Waverly, has a HUGE problem with this also.

So overall it was a chilling and emotional ride from start to finish and recommend it to anyone who is looking for a heart pounding, breath taking experience.
Kieran- "Do you think we're the only believers on board?"
Sarek shook his head. "Not by a long shot. Not anymore, anyway. Dad always said there are no atheists in foxholes." 


  1. Wow! At first glance, this doesn't seem to be my kind of book. But reading the synopsis and your review.....well, I definitely am adding this one to my TBR! And I love the cover, too!
    Thanks for stopping by my blog.

  2. Great review!

    Heres mine:

    This is a very fast paced book. A story set in the future, at a time when the earth is dying, two space ships have been launched to the same destination but initially within different time frames. Both ships have fertility problems on board, one overcomes them, the other does not. One ship is religious, the other is not. Conflict arises and when the two ships meet up chaos arises.

    I think this book would be better suited to older teenagers as there are some adult themes in it and some rather dark things do happen, which I found a little disturbing.

    What I also did not like was how difficult situations often bought out the worst in the characters in the book, rather than the best in them. At first I thought Seth and Kieran would turn out to be good characters, but in the end was less sure of them both.

    The strongest and best character in the book by far was the girl Waverly, who I found myself rooting for.