This story is set in space, about 50 years after two space ships launched from a dying Earth with colonists for 'New Earth'. Halfway into their journey, the most pressing thought on everyone's mind is keeping the human race going to avoid extinction and populate New Earth. Initial fertility problems have pressurized the issue so much that Waverly and Kieran, the oldest of the next generation at 15 and 16, are expected to marry and begin doing their part for humanity.
The plot unfolds with the introduction of the second ship's crew, who never fixed their fertility issues, and as such, have no children and no future. This is where the real drama sets in, and it happens early on in the book to create a real sense of pace. Waverly and Kieran become separated, and each has to deal with the consequences of being the eldest child in a society where, as children, they were doted on and never pushed too far.
I found elements of the plot similar to the end of Outside In by Maria V Snyder
, and I think that this is actually a good complementary read. You are never quite sure who the "bad guy" is because everyone has a compelling story waiting to win you over. There are things which happen to both main characters that are disturbing and challenge them, and it is very interesting to see how they grow and adapt. I also enjoyed comparing how societies form and build themselves to maintain purpose, which was explored quite a bit here.
I did sit up late into the night to finish this book, in a single sitting, and I'll look forward to the sequel as there is a lot left to get from this concept. There were a couple of things which annoyed me about this book though: I was attracted by the title, but it has no relation to the events of the book which is just a little annoying, and finally, I became seriously irritated by the number of times "Waverly" was written. I knew who the passage was about, and it ended up feeling like the author loved the name so much she had to keep using it. It seemed to crop up every other sentence... its a small thing which perhaps other readers wouldn't notice, but like a dripping tap, if you do notice, it will probably annoy the heck out of you!!