Bumped, Megan McCafferty
When a virus makes everyone over the age of eighteen infertile, would-be parents pay teen girls to conceive and give birth to their children, making teens the most prized members of society. Girls sport fake baby bumps and the school cafeteria stocks folic-acid-infused food.
Sixteen-year-old identical twins Melody and Harmony were separated at birth and have never met until the day Harmony shows up on Melody’s doorstep. Up to now, the twins have followed completely opposite paths. Melody has scored an enviable conception contract with a couple called the Jaydens. While they are searching for the perfect partner for Melody to bump with, she is fighting her attraction to her best friend, Zen, who is way too short for the job.
Harmony has spent her whole life in Goodside, a religious community, preparing to be a wife and mother. She believes her calling is to convince Melody that pregging for profit is a sin. But Harmony has secrets of her own that she is running from.
When Melody is finally matched with the world-famous, genetically flawless Jondoe, both girls’ lives are changed forever. A case of mistaken identity takes them on a journey neither could have ever imagined, one that makes Melody and Harmony realize they have so much more than just DNA in common. -Plot summary borrowed from Good Reads
Dystopias for the 16 and Pregnant/Juno/Gloucester "pregnancy pact" generation. Like Matched and Wither, this is another internalized dystopian novel from a feminine perspective, although there is far less emphasis on the Evil Authority, and more on the quiet day to day consequences of living in a society where teen pregnancy is not only encouraged, but commercialized. Having Melody and Harmony as alternating narrators really helps to shed light on the issues of this society from both sides of the argument, as well.
My only real problem with this book was trying to get a fix on the slang, like, rilly. Even that was kind of intriguing in terms of world building, though, as much of it was based on pregnancy-related terms: bumping, preggo, negging (reneging on a contract is a major faux pas), terminating, fertilicious, etc.
Check this one out if you're looking for a less than challenging but relevant dystopian novel, or something to read after ODing on a Teen Mom marathon. The sequel, Thumped, is due out Spring 2012.