Thursday, March 6, 2014

The Only Boy by Jordan Locke


The Only Boy by Jordan Locke

Review by Lauren

copy from the author, but all opinions are my own

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery


Official Summary: Mary is stuck in Section One, living with three hundred women in a crumbling hospital. She wonders what life was like before the Cleansing wiped out all the men. But the rules-the Matriarch's senseless rules-prevent her from exploring the vacant city to find out. Taylor's got a dangerous secret: he's a boy. His compound's been destroyed, and he's been relocated to Section One. Living under the Matriarch means giving up possessions, eating canned food and avoiding all physical contact. Baggy clothes hide his flat chest and skinny legs, but if anyone discovers what lies beneath, he'll be exiled. Maybe even executed. Mary's never seen a boy-the Matriarch cut the pictures of men from the textbooks-and she doesn't suspect Taylor's secret. If she knew, she might understand the need to stop the girls from teasing him. If she knew, she might realize why she breaks the rules, just to be near him. Then again, she might be frightened to death of him. Taylor should go. The Matriarch is watching his every move. But running means leaving Mary-and braving the land beyond the compound's boundaries.

Review: Due to a disease that nobody could find the cure for, all the men on the planet have been wiped out. Or so the women in charge tell the girls in their care. Mary's books at school do not contain an unmarked picture of a male, so when she meets Taylor, she doesn't suspect their secret...which is, of course, that Taylor is not really a girl but a boy. Taylor didn't grow up in Section One. Where he came from, he had books that showed the truth and friends and family that would touch and show physical affection.

Mary is curious about Taylor from the start but when she eventually learns his secret, she isn't sure how to feel. She's been told her whole life that boys are dangerous and the cause of the virus that killed so many (even some of the women). She is nervous, but still interested. It took me a bit to get used to the idea that Mary would be so willing to attach herself to Taylor and break the rules she grew up with. What helped me is remembering that when Mary's mom was alive, she would touch her and that makes Mary crave for more and with Taylor, she might just get that.

The book keeps you guessing as to what everyone's true motives are, and while it took me a bit of time to get into the story, that doesn't mean it was particularly slow. For example, it doesn't take long for Mary to learn Taylor's secret, which is just the beginning of the excitement in The Only Boy.

Overall, I'm glad I gave this one a chance. I don't read a lot of dystopian novels like this, but I have found some indie titles catching my attention lately, including this one. The novel is told in first-person present point of view, with the perspective changing between Mary and Taylor. It was nice getting both of their perspectives, especially when the two are separated from each other later in the book. The Only Boy might not be the most imaginative dystopian, but it does prove to be a good read.

22 comments:

Liviania said...

I'm not a dystopian fan, but that's a good premise. (Although they'd definitely have to be unaware what boys look like.)

Melanie said...

The premise of this one is interesting and could go pretty well!

Awesome review! <33

Jasprit said...

I agree it really is getting difficult to find a decent dystopian read these days. I'm glad that you were able to to enjoy this book overall! Thanks for putting it on my radar! :)

Erika Sorocco said...

I'm actually a huge fan of dystopians; so this intrigues me.

xx

Sam (Realm of Fiction) said...

I'm sure I've seen this around before, but I didn't know what it was about until now. I'm glad to hear you enjoyed it! Even if it took some time to get into. Lovely review. :)

Tracy Terry said...

This puts me in mind of The Knife Of Never Letting Go which was set in a time populated by only men.

Synchronized Reading said...

This one doesn't sound like it would be for me, but it does sounds pretty interesting. I've not heard of it before, but I do love a dystopian. Great review :)

Janina @ Synchronized Reading

Cascia Talbert said...

That sounds like a very interesting story line.

Heidi@Rainy Day Ramblings said...

I don;t think I have ever read a book with a boy masquerading as a girl, usually it is the other way around. Definitely sounds different!

cleopatralovesbooks said...

Another great review! With some books it is better that it takes some time to get into the story and this sounds like an excellent example. I'm glad you had a good read :-)

Eileen said...

Wow if all the men in the world were wiped out, that would be so disastrous but really interesting. I like the sound of this one and the dual POV :D Fantastic review, Lauren! <33

Melissa (Books and Things) said...

This book sounds like it could be quite frustrating as well. Not telling you what you would like to know. Still, it was a good read so it might be fun when you just want some entertainment.

Lily B said...

ha! the premise sounds very interesting, she did sound a bit too trusting - but I like the sound of the story in general. Different.

A Voracious Reader said...

Color me intrigued. Must add this to the TBR. :)

kimbacaffeinate said...

I love dystopian reads and this sounds refreshing. I like the dual povs as well. It sounds like the not knowing aspect kept you engaged even if it frustrated you.

Michelle @ In Libris Veritas said...

Ooo this sounds different!

Andrea @The Bookish Babes said...

The premise reminds me a bit of the Eve series by Anna Carey. I'm glad you ended up enjoying TOB. It sounds like one I might like as well.

Aylee said...

Wow, this is the first I've heard of this one and I like what I've read here! It's great that you liked this one so much even though you don't normally read dystopian. Thanks for putting this indie read on my radar, Lauren! I'll have to add it to my tbr.

The Bookish Manicurist said...

This reminds me of The Knife of Letting Go only the men have gone, not the women. It sounds really intriguing!

Medeia Sharif said...

I've slowed down in my reading of dystopian books, but this looks good.

Giselle said...

I read up on this book a few days ago for a blitz and it sounds really fascinating. Dystopian novels are my fave, too, so I'll keep an eye out for it! :) Plus - First person AND dual POV is how I love books in this genre! Woot!

Krysten Gautreaux said...

This sounds SOOOOOOOO good!


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