Genre: YA Fantasy/Sci-Fi
Page Length: 336 Pages
Publication Date: February 10th, 2015
Publisher: Tor Teen
Source: ARC via publisher; Thanks Tor Teen!
The Handmaid’s Tale meets Blood Red Road in Glass Arrow, the story of Aya, who lives with a small group of women on the run from the men who hunt them, men who want to auction off breeding rights to the highest bidder.
In a world where females are scarce and are hunted, then bought and sold at market for their breeding rights, 15-year old Aya has learned how to hide. With a ragtag bunch of other women and girls, she has successfully avoided capture and eked out a nomadic but free existence in the mountains. But when Aya’s luck runs out and she’s caught by a group of businessmen on a hunting expedition, fighting to survive takes on a whole new meaning.
My favorite element of this book is the characterization. I felt they were all fleshed-out and wonderful. I was rooting for all of them. Not only was the protagonist Aya well-developed, but also were the secondary characters. Aya's actions were admirable, and I loved her tenacity. She didn't shut down and drown herself in self-pity after all the unfortunate things that happened to her; she never gave up! Kiran was a bit of an enigma, but he was so sincere and gentle and a great guy. Daphne was a bit of an enigma, and I loved how her character transforms in this book.
This is the first Simmons book I've read, and I'm happy to say I'm a fan of her writing. There were twists and turns, things I never saw coming. The writing was great, the style was unique, and I loved all the sentence inversions. It really varied the writing and made it sound pretty and elegant. I grew a bit restless and bored in places, yet overall I was thoroughly engrossed in the story.
I was fascinated by the world that Simmons created. It's horrifying yet captivating at the same time. I was hungry for any information Simmons gave us about the world. There were strange gadgets, class systems, history references, fables, and more. I really enjoyed how meticulous and well-developed the world was.
The romance was so sweet and yet I'm glad it was a small part of this book. So much of this book is about family which I loved. Aya is trying to get back to her family. She wants to protect them; she wants to see them again. Everything she does in this book is for the sake of her family and returning to them. The romance between her and Kiran was cute and developed slowly and wonderfully. I'm glad it didn't overshadow the motif of family and that it didn't take over the plot. Great execution and great tension. I just wanted to shout "KISS ALREADY!"
As far as endings go, I think The Glass Arrow is one of my favorites. It's not concrete, but it's hopeful. It's happy and just what these characters deserve after all the bad things that happened to them.