Title: Bumped (Bumped #1)
Author: Megan McCafferty
Publisher: Balzer + Bray (HarperCollins)
Date: April 2011
When a virus makes everyone over the age of eighteen infertile, would-be parents are forced to pay teen girls to conceive and give birth to their children, making teens the most prized members of society.My Thoughts:
Sixteen-year-old identical twins Melody and Harmony were separated at birth and had never met until the day Harmony shows up on Melody’s doorstep. Until 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 religious Goodside, preparing to be a wife and mother. She believes her calling is to bring Melody back to Goodside and convince her 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. -- Goodreads
I'm a huge, huge fan of Megan McCafferty's Jessica Darling series, so I was trilled to hear she was working on a new series. Bumped is so different from McCafferty's first series, but still has her wonderful writing style and awesome characters.
I'll start with my few issues with the book. I found the beginning to be very confusing; the story just suddenly starts and there's a lot going on and the language is a bit strange. But after a couple chapters I'd figured out what was going on. I did go back a re-read the first few pages because the opening scene totally confused me. It didn't take long for me to get into the story, so a confusing beginning wasn't really that big of an issue. Beyond that my only other issue was with the language. It reminded me of Scott Westerfeld's Uglies series; there's a lot of strange slang and technology that isn't explained. It didn't really bother me, but it was a little confusing. Spending time explaining what everything meant would have slowed things down and really taken you out of the story. So I guess the language wasn't really an issue, but it might be for some readers.
Ok, onto the good stuff. The story: how on earth did Megan come up with this?! The whole situation of the world and technology is just amazing and although not completely original, a nice unique spin on a dystopian topic that's been around for a while (infertility). Megan was able to take a topic that usually would equal a depressing tale of teen girls/women forced into marriages or pregnancies and turn it into a sometimes funny and light, meaningful story about teens and sex.
I liked both Melody and Harmony, but I didn't connect with them in the way I was hoping to. I felt so connected to Jessica in Megan's other series, and I guess I expected the same sort of connection with Bumped. I didn't dislike the characters, I just didn't fall in love with them. The story felt more story and plot driven, than character driven. Maybe in the next books I'll connect more to the twins as their characters' grow now that the world is created and established.
Although the book was not at all what I was expecting, I loved it and am excited to see where the series goes.