I read Only Ever Yours at the end of June and I absolutely loved it! If you’re a fan of dystopia you should definitely pick up this book! Seriously, do it!
In a world in which baby girls are no longer born naturally, women are bred in schools, trained in the arts of pleasing men until they are ready for the outside world. At graduation, the most highly rated girls become “companions”, permitted to live with their husbands and breed sons until they are no longer useful.
For the girls left behind, the future – as a concubine or a teacher – is grim.
Best friends freida and isabel are sure they’ll be chosen as companions – they are among the most highly rated girls in their year.
But as the intensity of final year takes hold, Isabel does the unthinkable and starts to put on weight. ..
And then, into this sealed female environment, the boys arrive, eager to choose a bride.
freida must fight for her future – even if it means betraying the only friend, the only love, she has ever known…
So this book is a dystopian (my favourite genre) and I was fascinated by the blurb so I had to get a copy! I was lucky to be given a review copy by Waterstones Birmingham High Street (YA Birmingham) and excitedly started reading this book as soon as I got home.
‘Only Ever Yours’ is set in a world dominated by men, where women are created for one of three purposes, to be a companion, a concubine or a chastity. In their final year of school, the girls meet the boys for the first time and have to impress them as the boys are the ones who will choose their futures. The women in this world are degraded and deemed unimportant. Girls’ names aren’t even capitalised!
So why should you read this book?
Only Ever Yours kept me hooked throughout the book! I had a massive book hangover after reading it and it took me two weeks to pick up another book and begin to move on! This book is so good that it totally destroyed my phone… literally! I was walking around in the house reading Only Ever Yours and my phone was balanced on my book. I was so into the story that I didn’t really look where I was going and I dropped my phone on the tiled floor (ouch!) So I had no phone for several days!
It’s really clever
I found this book very clever as it tricks you into believing everything that happens is normal. When I read this book I often found myself sympathising with the characters. I felt sorry for people when they became ‘fat’ and felt sorry for freida when she wasn’t chose for Heavenly Seventy. But then I realised that the girls aren’t fat at all and that Heavenly Seventy is a disgusting and creepy exercise! There were a few little lines (like freida wondering how she would look upside down on the stripping pole) that made me step back and think about the horrible world she lives in.
One of the most important things about a dystopian book for me is that it really makes you think about the future and the terrible things that could happen and Only Ever Yours certainly did that. The scary part is that elements of the book are just exaggerated versions of society today (and in the past!)
Most of the books I’ve read recently have been very obvious and predictable. The romance was slightly predictable in this book but overall it left me guessing throughout! There were some very shocking plot twists in this book!
There are so many more reasons but it would take me a long time to get into them all!
I loved this book so much and I urge that you read it as soon as possible! This book reminded me of Uglies and The Selection Series so if you liked those books, I’m sure you’ll love this one!
Fingers crossed that Louise O’Neill will write a companion novel!