A Girl Called Fearless by Catherine Linka

Published May  2014 by St. Martin’s Griffin

368 pages

Avie Reveare is growing up without a mother. This is not an uncommon fate in her time, however, after a hormone in beef wiped out most women in America between puberty and menopause. Avie, now 16, is living an existence that would have been unrecognizable to her before the epidemic–bodyguards, classes at school about how to keep a household, and most of her friends being claimed by marriage contracts–but this is the way it is now. Being a young girl has become one of the most dangerous fates imaginable.

While Avie is not necessarily happy with this turn of events, she has accepted her new sheltered life with the promise of college and more freedom in a few years. Then her father announces that he is arranging a marriage for her with one of richest men in the country in order to save his dying company, and her whole world completely changes–again. With nobody to turn to, and her every move monitored, Avie searches for freedom and a way out in any form. Struggling to determine who she can trust in a world where the Paternalist movement is gaining political traction (no women voters), Avie’s fight is just a different version of the fight women are having all over the world today.

While the premise is relatable, especially for female readers, and the plot is well constructed, pieces of new information that change Avie’s opinion are few and far between. Readers that get impatient when books become slow-moving or dislike books where the main character is uncertain and confused for a lot of the time will probably not enjoy this book. If a reader can stick with it, though, they will be rewarded with plot twists and bold messages that are clearly meant as warnings for modern society about the way women’s issues are treated by the media and government.

Genre: Dystopian Fiction

Keywords: future, feminism, trust, love, freedom

Best Quote: I slammed awake in the middle of the night. I’ll never feel safe again.

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