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The Glass Arrow    by Kristen Simmons order for
Glass Arrow
by Kristen Simmons
Order:  USA  Can
Tor, 2015 (2015)
Hardcover, e-Book
* *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

Here's an unusual YA dystopian that I found somewhat reminiscent of Margaret Atwood's Handmaid's Tale. Teen Aya lives in a future where women are property, bought and sold and abused.

Young Aya's mother escaped to the mountains and raised her there till she died, leaving Aya responsible for small twins Tam and Nina and her cousin Salma. As the story opens, Trackers have come to the area, hunting for wild girls, who are 'more likely to produce a living, healthy boy child' than city bred women. They capture Aya but not the others, leaving her desperate about their safety and well being.

In the city, the young women are held and trained, preparing them for auction. Punished for persistent escape attempts and for fighting with the compliant city girls, Aya is sentenced to a month in solitary by the Governess. She's chained outdoors in the yard near the Driver rental barn. Over time she talks to the mute young Driver who works there, though he never replies.

After Aya is eventually auctioned and sold to the city's mayor, it's the Driver who helps her - and a city girl, Daphne - escape back to the mountains where she learns that he and his people are not what she believed them to be. There she tells Daphne a story her mother told her, of sacrifice and a glass arrow. She saves the twins. And she takes a very dangerous gamble for freedom.

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