Book Review: With genetic manipulation scientists eradicate birth defects and forever alter society. This Y/A dystopian breathes the consequences and much more.


The Breeding TreeBy J. Andersen
It is easy to cross the line of ethics when intentions for the greater good can justify crimes against humanity. In this Y/A dystopian novel 17-year old Katherine Dennard has to decide between the life she has been told was the only way and a rebellion that opens her eyes to see beyond the walls that confine her. 
Her dream career was to become a “Creation Specialist” in the prestigious Sector 4. In this dystopian world, a female’s eggs are extracted shortly after she is born. They are warehoused as the Institute controls all fertility. When a married couple wants a child, they put in a request to the Institute. The Creation Specialists create the child in a Petri dish. It is monitored as it goes through the stages in Utero capsulized in a unique womb-like gel. Should a birth defect or genetic disease occur, then the baby is discharged. This all seemed normal to Katherine, while she had doubts about the Institute’s totalitarian rule, she lived within its rules. 
As Katherine goes through the career program she has to discharge zygotes. This brings in the topic of abortion, at what point is this being alive? Should science be able to exterminate a life because it may have genetic markers that could harm the perfect community in some way? As she furthers her studies she realizes the Institute is not what it seems. The Institute used her DNA without her knowledge or permission with the intent to experiment on the resulting baby. The adventure of her life and her baby’s life brings a new perspective of survival she never thought she’d have to endure. The chip in the back of her perfect neck promised a disease free life of 120 years. Being young she didn’t question what happened in the creation lab until now. When her son’s life is threatened before he’s even born, can she rebel against everything she’s known in order to save him and herself? 
Author J. Anderson spins a story so enthralling, the reader is hooked from the first page. This story literally is about life and death. It not only questions the ideal of living in a perfect society free of imperfections, it delves deeper into the psyche of “just because they can, should they”? As a society should they allow science to genetically manipulate the future generations? It’s a decision the naturally born decide for, they separate the races into districts and weed out abnormalities over several generations. The intent is to create perfect humans after which they will re-integrate the districts.  
There is so much detail and thematic diversity in this novel that provides food for thought and most definitely leaves the reader wanting the sequel. It is a Y/A novel that all mature ages would enjoy and would definitely fit into a screenplay adaptation. Script writers take heed, look into this story it could be your next blockbuster series. 
Be sure to visit J. Andersen’s website at

FTC Disclaimer: I was given an ARC of this title by Brimstone Fiction and J. Andersen for review purposes only; no other compensation was awarded. 


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