If you haven't yet read one of Gemma Malley's books, you're missing out. Her ideas and view of the future are nothing short of terrifying, and both make for compulsive reading.
The Resistance picks up a short time after The Declaration ends, and this time mainly focuses on Peter rather than Anna. I loved The Declaration, but I enjoyed this sequel more. It's exciting and original, with more shocks and revelations than I thought possible.
Peter is working with the Underground, a group of resistance fighters opposed to the Longevity drug (Longevity is a drug that makes you live forever, and can only be taken if you give up your right to have children). Together they try and take down Pincent Pharma, the company responsible for producing and distributing the drug.
Quite a few questions are answered in this book, though you could argue that even more are raised. The whole world that Malley has created just scares the life out of me, and I hope things are never like this by the time we reach the year 2140. There's definitely room for another sequel, and I hope we see a continuation of the story at some point. There's so much left to explore... Will the Underground prevail? Will Longevity be eradicated? All are valid questions I'm dying to know the answer to.
So, Gemma Malley, if you read this: please write another book. I'm not opposed to begging, and, if I have to, bribery could be arranged. As long as I don't have to sign the Declaration, I'm all ears!
THE RESISTANCE is the much-anticipated sequel to THE DECLARATION. It picks up where THE DECLARATION left off and is told through Peter's eyes.
He and Anna live together with Ben, Anna's brother, in a rundown house trying to keep out of the way. Peter and Anna aren't comfortable being Legal yet, and find the stares and nasty comments coming from the other citizens unsettling.
Peter and Anna work for the Underground whenever they can. They both want to see the Declaration a thing of the past.
Peter gets his chance when his grandfather, head of Pincent Pharma, offers him a position at the company. Pincent Pharma is responsible for Longevity, the drug that makes an extended life possible. Peter uses this opportunity to get information for the Underground.
What he finds causes him to question his beliefs about the Declaration, the Underground, and his relationship with Anna. It takes uncovering a horrible secret to put him back on track.
THE RESISTANCE was just as good as THE DECLARATION. The suspense keeps you turning page after page. Peter's character is so likeable and his devotion to Anna is heartwarming.
Gemma Malley leaves it open for another story, and I for one can't wait to see what happens next.
Reviewed by: Karin Librarian
on 1 November 2009
The resistance is the brilliant, brilliant sequel to the utterly amazing The Declaration. I love both of these books so much. The concepts, the ideas and how terrifically deep some of them are. Gemma Malley has created a perfect piece of dystopian fiction for both older teens and adult to ponder.
The Resistance offers readers a morally challenging story, which makes us question ourselves, our society and what we believe. The story itself is very good. At first it felt a little slow but once it got going, the book never left my hands. I would suggest trying to read it in one day, as I had a very sleepless night, dying to know what would happen. This book absorbs you. Beware. Also, the book covers some very sensitive and quite disturbing incidents/ideas but they help make the book what it is.
Just as poignant and thoughtful as The Declaration, The Resistance creates a deep connection with the reader. Exciting and moving, these two books are the best reads I have ever had.
on 22 October 2009
This is the sequel to The Declaration and it doesn't disappoint. It is clearly intended for those who have read the first book so, whilst you probably could enjoy it in its own right, it makes far more sense as a sequel. The author raises some good questions about the purpose of medicine, the ethics of stem cell research and very current issues of what we as a society would hope to achieve from such drugs.
The book focuses on what happens to Anna and Peter after they become 'legal' , trying to make a life together bringing up Anna's baby brother, Ben in a society where it is illegal to have children because everyone is taking longevity drugs to defer death indefinitely. Even though Peter and Anna are now classified as legal they are frowned upon by most of society as freaks and a generation to be feared (youth is a rare commodity in 2140 where most people are well over 100 years old). Babies, rather than being welcomed to the world, are seen as a drain on increasingly scarce resources which are now tightly rationed; redolent perhaps of the way that many people view immigrants in present times. The dehumanisation of youth in the treatment of the 'surpluses' serves as a wider metaphor for what happens when we allow people to be treated as 'other' and look for ways to rationalise our hatred. The plot revolves around the development of the next generation of longevity drugs to replace the current version which, although prolonging life indefinitely, are not perfect as they do not repair external signs of ageing such as wrinkles and grey hair. Consequently Pincent Pharma, along with the malevolent 'Authorities' , are seeking the next pharmaceutical breakthrough using stem cells to create more powerful drugs that will maintain a youthful outer appearance for eternity. Peter is the grandson of the MD of Pincent Pharma and infiltrates his grandfather's company to try to help the Resistance who want to destroy longevity, but then finds his resolve wavering after discovering that both he and Anna are infertile. However, the shocking secrets he uncovers at Pincent Pharma change everything for Peter and Anna. The plot moves quickly but Peter's character, with all his adolescent angst and rage, is still well developed and convincing.
I wouldn't hesitate to buy this book for a teenager but would caution on two counts. The first is that there are some quite graphic and horrifying accounts of what goes on at Pincent Pharma, it would be a spoiler to reveal the nature of this but could be disturbing to younger readers (and possibly to some more squeamish adults). The second is that, whilst it is entirely appropriate in the context of the plot, I do have some anxiety about a book for a teenage audience (girls in particular) that portrays childbirth as the ultimate act of heroic rebellion and the only way to find true meaning in a flawed world. This, coupled with the deeply unsympathetic portrayals of career women, could give out a slightly strange message to young women at a time when you would want them to be focusing on their own studies and future careers before thinking about motherhood. However, overall it is testament to this writer's imagination that I consider the book could be so influential, and would hope that most young people reading this would be able to make the distinction between the present day and this nightmare vision of the future. This is a more action packed adventure than The Declaration and is more likely to appeal for boys as well as girls. It would also make an excellent film or TV drama.
This is Book Two of a Young Adult trilogy by Gemma Malley, the first being The Declaration with the final instalment, The Legacy, due for publication in Autumn this year. It's another futuristic, dystopian thriller set in 2140.
We are reacquainted with Anna and Peter who are now Legals living on the Outside but life is not exactly carefree for them given that young people are viewed with distust and suspicion and having Ben, Anna's baby brother, living with them makes them even more conspicuous. Peter, working as an agent for the Underground takes on the task of infiltrating Pincent Pharma Corporation which manufactures the longevity drugs crucial for maintaining a society intent on the pursuit of immortality. This mission is both enhanced and hampered by Peter's turbulent relationship with Richard Pincent, his grandfather, who is determined to make Peter and Anna sign the Declaration (agreeing to take Longevity) using any means necessary.
If you haven't read The Declaration you will be totally confused as the author assumes prior knowledge of previous events and characters - it can become a tad distracting at times even for those of us who have read the first book! Again, there are a lot of serious questions raised about good versus evil and the morality of scientific progress - would we really want to live forever? How can we reconcile one tribe, those who have signed the Declaration, having eternal life whilst the dissenters, the Surpluses, are rendered extinct? Of course, we would be blind if we didn't see the similarities we share with this future world - apartheid, segregation and xenophobia are hardly new phenomena.
Some scenes might be considered unsuitable for sensitive young teenagers due to the graphic descriptions of some experiments at Pincent Pharma but overall, I think this is an excellent book for teenagers as it raises a lot of important social and political questions. The most frightening aspect is that this story, set in the distant future, doesn't seem that far-fetched. It is refreshing to find a YA novel suitable for both male and female, this second volume concentrates on Peter's story whilst the first volume focused more on Anna. I'm looking forward to seeing how the author concludes this series with The Legacy - I'm not expecting a neat and tidy ending! If you enjoyed The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Attwood and/or perhaps Under the Skin by Michael Faber and you don't have an aversion to Young Adult reads, I think you'll really enjoy this very readable series.
on 1 May 2013
Helen for [...]
Copy provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review
The story continues from not long after the point where we left it in The Declaration (read my review here). Peter and Anna are living legally on the outside, trying to cope with their new life and looking after little Ben, Anna's brother. Anna is enjoying being a mother to Ben but is struggling with living in the world so different from the Surplus Hall. Both she and Peter feel alien from this society and Anna particularly feels the stares of those who disapprove of her youth and her status. Neither Anna nor Peter have signed the declaration and neither want to take the wonder drug Longevity that will keep them alive for ever, but at the expense of not being able to have children and create new life. As they are refusing the drug and because of their background a close eye is being kept on them by the authorities.
Unsurprisingly, after all their experiences, Peter and Anna want to help the resistance movement in its fight against Longevity and its producer Pincent Pharma, Peter's Grandfather's company. Peter agrees to go and work for the company to feed information back to the Resistance, but he finds this a difficult task as his Grandfather starts to pressurise and then manipulate Peter to get what he wants, which is for Peter to sign up to the Declaration. For the reader though, the insight into Pincent Pharma and the whole operation is interesting, as well as watching the development of Peter's relationship with his Grandfather, Pincent himself
Meanwhile Anna is also being manipulated , for the same reason, and to try and catch her out, getting her into trouble. Anna still has much of the naivety and innocence from her life shut way and inexperience of the real world. Anna is desperate to do her bit to help and her desire to help other children who have been abandoned by their parents, or taken from their parents, causes problems. As this novel is told from Peter's voice I did miss Anna's voice from the first book. Peter has a fresh perspective though that adds a new dimension.
I enjoyed the development of Peter and Anna's relationship. It was so easy to see how they have become like a normal couple with arguments, insecurities and ups and downs and yet they are a couple like no other in the world that they live in. The pressure and insecurities this brings really tests them.
There are new characters too from the Resistance and other places. Peter and Anna have to work out where to put their trust. One of the most interesting new characters is Jude who has another unique perspective as he is Peter's age but having been a legal all his life. He is a computer whizz kid, but his life shows us how the worlds resources have been stretched by immortality. On top of that he is Peter's half-brother and takes us deeper into the back story.
The on-going story continues to provoke, raising issues about our desire to live longer, the price we pay for immortality, the cost to the world as we use our resources carelessly and so on. In particular it made me think about our priorities as we encourage everyone to work more and not necessarily be at home with children and families. This really made me feel that the right to be a mother is precious and not to be taken for granted.
Verdict: This is a brilliant follow on from The Declaration and is another gripping and challenging read.
on 6 December 2012
After finishing the first book in this trilogy, The Declaration, I was so in love with the story, so gripped by it, that I had to start this second book straight away! The Resistance starts pretty much where The Declaration left off, and we quickly become introduced to Anna, Peter and Ben's new life together as 'legals' on 'the outside'.
What first struck me about this, compared to the previous book, was the shift in perspective; whereas the trilogy had started off almost entirely from Anna's point of view (breaking off only briefly to focus on other characters, such as Mrs Pincent, the House Matron in the surplus hall), this book is much more focused on Peter, and mostly told from his perspective. It does switch between characters a lot more, because of the different sub-plots that meander through the book, so we do still occasionally see Anna on her own. We also have a new character, Jude, who is introduced fairly early on, and whose point of view we see pretty often, as his story begins to merge with Peter's. However, the story is still certainly centred around Peter and what is happening to him (the other characters' separate stories all come together at the end, and all have an effect on what happens with Peter).
I really enjoyed this shift, because although we do get to know and love Peter throughout The Declaration, it is Anna who we sympathise with more, and it's really Anna's story. It was good to get to know Peter more intimately, and to see him overcome such enormous problems made me love him even more than before.
I also really enjoyed seeing Peter's character struggle with his own, personal conflict. He's such an independent thinker, that he began to doubt and question the motives of all of those around him, even the one person who has always been there, throughout his entire life. To me, this showed a great amount of intelligence, and to overcome it definitely took huge amounts of courage, so I felt like his character had grown and developed a lot more by the end of the book.
This is the same with Anna. Even though we see her less than in the previous book, it's obvious how much she has evolved since we last saw her. Despite having been incarcerated in a surplus hall for almost her entire life, she has learnt to start thinking independently, begins to question things and form her own opinions and goals in life. It was brilliant to see Anna and Peter becoming more like a family as well - despite the difficulties they both faced, both on their own, and together. It was awesome to see them come out of it all stronger than before, and much more sure of themselves and what they wanted. They're a seriously enviable couple!
Not only did I enjoy how much the characters had grown, I also loved how the story developed as it went along. Obviously I don't want to say too much about this, for fear of giving anything away, but I can say that the story held even more excitement for me, than in the first book (which I didn't think would be possible). The Declaration builds the dystopian world for us, and kick-starts Anna's story, but what the story really is, is Anna's journey, as she and Peter leave Grange Hall behind, ready to fight against 'the Authorities'. We don't really get to see much of the world outside of the surplus halls.
It should be fairly obvious from the title of this one though, what this story follows! We get to see much more action than before, and learn more about 'the Underground', and their plans to remove Richard Pincent, owner of the Longevity drugs, from power, and restore humanity to a 'natural' state. By the end of the book, the revolution is getting into full swing, and I was on the edge of my seat with excitement!
I adored where the story went, and loved the shocking twists and turns that the plot took along the way. I didn't see any of it coming, and I was utterly captivated by every single page.
There are many things that I'm looking forward to in the final book of the trilogy; obviously I can't wait to see how it ends, and how everything is resolved, but I also can't wait to see what happens with Anna and Peter, and their current, rather exciting 'situation' (though I shall say no more about that - you'll just have to read it and find out what it is for yourself. Trust me, it's good!), and I also want to see more of Jude, discover more about him, get to know him better (because a couple of the things he did, I wasn't expecting from his character at all), and see what he does next. He's certainly an interesting personality!
I really enjoyed The Declaration, but I loved this a hundred times more. As when I finished the first book, I'm going to have to start the final instalment straight away.
This is a seriously addictive trilogy, and one I highly recommend!
Taken from my blog review at [...]
I loved the first book in Gemma Malley's dystopian series, The Declaration (review here ), so much that once I turned the last page I eagerly picked up this second instalment straight away. The Resistance picks up Anna and Peter's story not long after the first left off and I found it a very easy continuation to make. In fact I loved The Resistance even more and once again flew through the pages.
While The Declaration focuses mainly on Anna and life for the Surplus children, this time the focus is on Peter and life outside amongst `legals'. Finding it difficult to adjust to life outside the Surplus Halls in a world were the young are always treated with suspicion and resentment, and both still heavily involved with the underground movement, Peter seeks to infiltrate Pincent Pharma, where longevity is made by getting a job. But the lure of eternal life is difficult to resist and Peter finds his loyalties tested to the limit, putting everything and everyone he cares about in danger.
The action really steps up in The Resistance. I mentioned in my review of The Declaration that despite being set in the future it had a Dickensian workhouse feel about it. Now we're outside the Surplus Halls and right in the middle of Pincent Pharma, the huge and powerful home of Longevity, and in the midst of another scientific breakthrough. I'm not the most scientifically minded person ever (understatement) but this fascinated me. Malley gives us enough information to really imagine the world of Longevity without overloading my brain and forcing me to switch off.
The Resistance also takes an even more sinister turn than The Declaration, one that is truly shocking and horrific and yet again, being aware of how hideous humans can be, I still believed it. Nothing about this series seems far fetched at all, many of the themes are ones we can identify even now- only magnified, and this makes it all the more scary.
There are several new characters introduced in this novel. We meet Jude, the half brother who robbed Peter of his legal status by being born just weeks earlier. There's a real air of mystery around him, I couldn't work out if he was a good guy or bad guy for most of the book, and I actually don't think he could. Richard Pincent, owner of Pincent Pharma is ruthless and cruel, making a fantastic villain while Pip, head of the Underground has the true spirit of a resistance leader. He's both terrifying yet compassionate in equal measures and very mysterious. I continued to like both Anna and Peter too. Malley doesn't make her heroes perfect, they have flaws which make them all the more human. I thought having Peter question his previous beliefs regarding longevity was a brilliant move and his battle within himself was honest and believable.
Gemma Malley's writing style is incredibly accessible and readable yet remains intelligent throughout, and I think this series will appeal to a very wide audience, young and old. There are some quite adult themes in this book, and I probably wouldn't recommend this one in particular to anyone under twelve, however I think they are tackled appropriately enough that I'd be happy for my own children to read these books from around that age. I'd also strongly recommend these books to reluctant readers because of their readability and especially boys who may be put of a little by the very attractive covers. I think it's pretty important to read the series in order as I think I may have been a little lost if I hadn't read The Declaration first. As far as sequels go, this is a winner and exceeded my expectation. Again, once I'd read the last page I went straight on to the third and final book in the series, the Legacy.
on 23 May 2013
I welcomed being back in Peter and Anna's world, though I have to admit, the pace was a little slow at the beginning of the novel. Unlike 'The Declaration', I wasn't devouring the pages each night! That said, I did enjoy the book (once it got going) and I liked to read events from Peter's perspective. It was interesting to watch how Peter and Anna coped living together (they seem to have greatly matured in this book)and discovering more about 'The Underground' was intriguing. I particularly liked how Malley portrayed Richard Pincent in an evil way - I love a good villain!
If you enjoyed book 1, I'm sure you are going to buy this book anyway - just don't expect all of the action that was present in the first book! Enjoy :)
I read it a while ago but was really gripped by the first book in this trilogy. I did enjoy this book which continues the story but was left feeling like there were a huge number of coincidences without which the story wouldn't have worked but which felt to me, as step to far in terms of believability.
That said, there were also so good twists and turns which worked well, and so this book was almost but not quite a 4 star book. If you've read the first in the trilogy you will enjoy this. I have the final book on my book shelf and will certainly plan to read it in the next 12 months as I am interested to find out what happens.