Title: The Glass Arrow
Author: Kristen Simmons
Publisher: Tor Teen (Macmillan)
Release Date: February 10, 2015
Acquired Via: Publisher
Once there was a time when men and women lived as equals, when girl babies were valued, and women could belong only to themselves. But that was ten generations ago. Now women are property, to be sold and owned and bred, while a strict census keeps their numbers manageable and under control. The best any girl can hope for is to end up as some man’s forever wife, but most are simply sold and resold until they’re all used up.
Only in the wilderness, away from the city, can true freedom be found. Aya has spent her whole life in the mountains, looking out for her family and hiding from the world, until the day the Trackers finally catch her.
Stolen from her home, and being groomed for auction, Aya is desperate to escape her fate and return to her family, but her only allies are a loyal wolf she’s raised from a pup and a strange mute boy who may be her best hope for freedom...if she can truly trust him.
The Glass Arrow: a haunting, yet hopeful, new novel from Kristen Simmons, the author of the popular Article 5 trilogy.
Though Kristen Simmons debuted around the same time that I started blogging, I never read her books. (I tried to read as many 2012 debuts as possible.) I've always meant to read the Article 5 trilogy and would get distracted, but there was no way I could pass up reading The Glass Arrow. I haven't had a lot of luck with female suppression-themed dystopians since The Handmaid's Tale, but I'm so fascinated by that sub-genre that The Glass Arrow went straight to the front of the TBR as soon as I got approved for a galley.
The Glass Arrow had a strong start. We meet the main character, Aya, in the woods being chased by Trackers who look for females to sell as sex slaves. A great deal of the book follows her dealing with her captivity in the Garden, waiting to be auctioned to a man who is hoping for a fertile woman to bear him a child.
The plot went downhill as Aya's relationship with Kiran, a mute Driver who she befriended, progressed. I think examining the implications of a society where women are property is more important than the relationship between two teenagers. However, I did enjoy how Simmons used the characters and the conversations between the girls in the Garden to explore how these young girls can be brainwashed to believe this system is for their best interests.
While The Handmaid's Tale is a bit too intense for younger teens, I think The Glass Arrow is a great starting place for people to learn about the importance of an equal system. Though the book was slow to me toward the end, The Glass Arrow is still a good read.
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Fishpond
To satisfy FTC guidelines, I am disclosing that I received an digital copy of the book for reviewing purposes from the publisher through Edelweiss. This has in no way affected the outcome of the review. All opinions expressed are rambling, honest, and completely my own.