Thursday, December 6, 2012
Sci-Fi: The Breeders by Matthew J. Beier
Date: January 2012
Read: for review (disclaimer: I received my copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.)
Reading time: about a week
From GoodReads: The storm has come. Homosexuals, once an ostracized social minority, have taken over the world. They understood the dangers of an overpopulated planet, usurped government power, and created a culture of perfectly engineered families. But Grace Jarvis and Dex Wheelock are heterosexuals--part of the government's highly controlled backup plan for reproduction--and they have a problem: Grace is pregnant. Dex is the father. It is a crime that has only one consequence: banishment to the Antarctic Sanctuary, an isolated biological reserve where reproductive criminals are allowed to exist in peace, without disrupting the rest of civilization. Yet there are rumors that genocide has already begun and that the homosexuals are finally setting natural breeders on a path to extinction. This leaves Grace and Dex with only two choices: to succumb to the tyrannical regime, or run. They choose to run.
My review: The Breeders takes an interesting idea for a dystopian novel and runs with it. It's important to note the author's intention with this premise: it's an exaggerated reversal of the prejudice faced by homosexuals, not a paranoid indictment of what evil things homosexuals would do if they gained absolute power. The atmosphere of hatred and drastic government measures is terrifying, making parts of The Breeders gripping, edge-of-your-seat reads.
Maybe it was just because I had to take so long to finish the book, but at other points I began to get tired of the story. I felt like the characters kept rehashing the same emotions and thoughts without much variation or change. Overall, the characterizations seemed flat because, despite the characters' verbal acknowledgements of how much they had changed, it was difficult to trace much actual evolution in their thoughts. The book was great when exploring its futuristic society and the travails faced by the minority heterosexuals, but the main characters grew tiresome to read about.