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A young adult themed take on a future city in the US in which 2 social groups vie for scarce commodities, the one inside the wall gets all the best things and the people outside the wall have to make do The outsiders, who in exchange for a few crumbs from the table, have to give up a number of babies each month That s right, I said babies A young girl training to be a midwife, like her mother on the outside of the wall, accepts this way of life as it is all she has ever known until her parents are arrested and taken to a prison in the walled city Gaia decides to find out what is happening to her parents and break into the walled city The only thing I didn t care for is that so many questions are left unanswered until the next book. Esta quemadura no era peligrosa Solo me hizo fea e indigna del Enclave Marca de Nacimiento es una distop a en donde se ven las consecuencias del cambio clim tico Se vive de una de dos maneras o en el Enclave en donde viven los privilegiados o extramuros en donde a cambio de agua y micoprote na una prote na en polvo de origen vegetal deben entregar al Enclave una cuota de beb s reci n nacidos Todo cambia cuando encarcelan a los padres de Gaia, una chica de 16 a os que es comadrona y esta entra al Enclave a rescatarlos Es una novela buena por momentos, predecible en otros y la mayor parte del tiempo poco mas que entretenida. Read my review of all 3 books in the series before deciding whether to read this I cannot wait for the sequel I thought this would be a heavy read, but I was so wrong It is everything a gripping dystopian should be, but has wonderful characters who grow through adversity and whose experiences afford powerful insights into what is most important in life.A dark future world is divided between those who live inside the wall, and those like sixteen year old Gaia Stone who live outside Gaia was trained as a midwife by her mother, and it s now her job to advance a quota of infants from poverty into the walled Enclave Gaia has always been an obedient citizen, but when events reveal new information about the Enclave Gaia is determined to find out the truth and protect those she loves.Gaia had a wonderful upbringing her parents depth and wisdom nourished her character so that she was ready to face difficulties with courage and selflessness I loved the flash backs to her childhood which show a beautiful relationship with both parents and the profound moral wisdom they passed on to her On one occasion someone has stolen their animals, and her father surprises her by not being angry but forgiving the thieves, who must have been very hungry On another Gaia s mother is regretting having given her first two children to the Enclave as required by law Gaia would excuse her for not having had a choice but her father corrects her You always have a choice, Gaia, you can always say no After ploughing through the self serving false heroism of The Hunger Games series I felt like shouting this advice to the four winds If only we heard itoften.With a bad physical scar from a childhood accident, Gaia struggles to not only accept her appearance, but to acknowledge that the pity she loathes in others eyes may in fact be sympathy she sees she must learn to trust herself to others and not keep a barrier around herself.There s a beautiful respect for life, maternity, newborn babies and children, and for so many other qualities like the dignity of work, of relationships, and the rich beauty of a multitude of characters choosing what is right.The relationship between Leon and Gaia is realistic but perfect their love grows for all the right reasons, they learn so much about each other and their flawed but earnest characters are the antithesis of Edward Bella sentimentalism and Katniss Peeta falseness These two truly demonstrate sacrifice.Younger readers should be aware of a few slightly confronting birth scenes one right at the start , though I considered the realism a fitting setting for the weighty themes, giving life like depth to the characters There are also references to a serious occurrence in Leon s past that requires maturity and objectivity and may be misunderstood by younger readers The context shows that Leon s actions were not culpable but there were still serious consequences including the suicide of a mentally ill young teen Yet I thought even this event was treated with delicacy and dignity, and stimulated further growth in the characters.The story itself is original, tightly written and moves at a fast pace, and truth be told it s impossible to put down Once finished, the long wait for the sequel begins What a surprise to find a contemporary dystopian that s rich and deep and inspires such hope in adversity.www.GoodReadingGuide.com I wanted to like this book, I really did The premise seemed really interesting, but the book just fell flat Gaia was just boring and the rest of the characters were flat and underdeveloped I honestly didn t understand why everyone was risking their life to help her because she wasn t inspiring and her cause for the most part helped only her, no one else saving her parents I also didn t understand the need to separate the people from the Enclave and those outside the wall, since the Enclave readily accepted babies from outside the wall and the Enclave wanted to diversify their genetics None of the choices made by the Enclave or any of the characters made any sense at all it was like everyone walked around with blinders on I didn t even understand the need for the secret notes on the babies births since the Enclave had the technology for genetic testing Why would the Enclave care if people kept notes on who the babies parents were if none of those children wanted to leave the Enclave anyway Also, the people inside the Enclave wanted to have children together knowing they are related and they have a high chance of having a baby that will die at a young age Why I couldn t even believe the actions of people who weren t even main characters, that s how weak this book was. I ve read it a few times already smile An ARC of Birthmarked was gifted to me by my friend, so I feel kind of bad for giving this book such a low rating, but at the same time I don t want to sugar coat it either The thing is, Birthmarked is not one of those horrid books that I despise for awful writing or atrocious characters Ever and Hush, Hush come to mind It is not bad, but it is simply boring and unremarkable To be honest, only a marginally interesting premise kept me skimming last 200 pages of the book instead of giving up on it completely.Gaia Stone is a 16 year old midwife in training in a small village near a walled city called Enclave At the beginning of the book Gaia assists in birthing a baby and an hour later advances it, meaning she takes the baby from its mother and gives it over to the Enclave guards to be raised inside the city walls Even though the mother of the child is in tears, Gaia advances the baby without any hesitation, this is a part of her job and she knows it s a right thing to do When later that night Gaia reaches her home, she is told that her parents were arrested and are now imprisoned within the city The girl doesn t understand why it happened, the only clue to their possible discretion is a hair ribbon covered in mysterious symbols that Gaia a parents left behind What follows is Gaia s quest to find her parents and uncover the importance of the ribbon.I think the first major mistake the publisher of Birthmarked makes is that it markets it as a cross between The Handmaid s Tale and The Hunger Games which happen to be two of my favorites Trust me, it not even close to either of these books It lacks the depth and emotional impact of the first and non stop action and hot teenage romance of the second Even , both the characters and the dystopian world are not sufficiently developed Gaia is a very flat heroine Her main characteristics are a huge burn scar on her face the emotional implications are explored only superficially , her ability to get various people to help her by simply asking even prison guards are always willing to answer her questions and demands, imagine that and naivete akin to that of a 10 year old How this girl ends up getting a mature guy by the end of the story is a mystery to me The world of Enclave misses the mark too I recognized many aspects borrowed from The Handmaid s Tale the colored uniforms based on the professional occupation, the titles Masister, genetic and ecological problems, etc , but even that is not enough to create a convincing dystopian reality For a regime that is supposedly totalitarian and oppressive, the Enclave comes off as rather nonthreatening and lax.All this combined with the general slowness of the story, uninteresting characters, lack of convincing action, conflict, or romance, and absence of any kind of emotional impact that dystopias are known and lauded for, make Birthmarked a pretty mediocre read I might be in minority in my assessment of this book, as there are many 5 star reviews of it, but I am quite positive that even though some fans of sci fi dystopian YA might enjoy this novel, it is definitely not the next big thing P.S Almost forgot, the book has an ending, but it is extremely open for a sequel. Actual Rating 3.5 stars.It is somewhat different to other novels of this genre, due mostly to the heroin being a midwife.I enjoyed it, but it does have different moments of intensity It engaged meat some times than others, however, there are some situations that are definitely memorable This book could work just as well if the characters were older.I ll keep reading this series.Book 2 Prized 4.5 starsBook 3 Promised 2.5 stars &Download E-pub ☞ Birthmarked ↵ Sag Mir, Wo Die Kinder SindDie Junge Gaia Geh Rt Mit Ihrer Mutter Zu Den Wichtigsten Menschen Ihrer Gemeinschaft Als Hebamme Muss Sie Jeden Monat Die Ersten Drei Neugeborenen An Der Mauer Der Stadt Abgeben So Lautet Das Gesetz Noch Nie Hat Jemand Es Gewagt, Gegen Dieses Gesetz Und Die Herrscher Jenseits Der Mauer Aufzubegehren Doch Dann Werden Gaias Eltern Verhaftet, Und Das M Dchen Begibt Sich Auf Die Suche Nach Dem Geheimnis Der Stadt Jenseits Der Mauer Und Nach Dem Schicksal Der Verschwundenen Kinder Es Ist Eine Unbarmherzige Welt, In Der Die Sechzehnj Hrige Gaia Aufw Chst Alles Ist Streng Rationiert Und Jeder Tr Umt Von Einem Besseren Leben Das Ist Jedoch Nur Wenigen Auserw Hlten Vorbehalten, Die In Einer Geheimnisvollen Stadt Leben, Der Enklave, Hinter Einer Un Berwindlichen Mauer Alle Anderen M Ssen Sich Mit Dem Zufriedengeben, Was Die Enklave Ihnen Zuteilt Der Preis Daf R Ist Hoch Jeden Monat M Ssen Die Ersten Drei Neugeborenen An Der Mauer Abgegeben Werden Wer Sich Weigert, Wird Mit Dem Tod Bestraft, Besonders Hebammen Wie Gaia Und Ihre Mutter Doch Dann Werden Eines Tages Gaias Eltern Verhaftet F R Das Junge M Dchen Zerbricht Eine Welt, Und Sie Beginnt Fragen Zu Stellen Was Geschieht Mit Den Verlorenen Kindern Als Gaia Auf Der Suche Nach Antworten Heimlich Die Verbotene Stadt Betritt, Beginnt F R Sie Ein Abenteuer Voller Gefahren, Und Sie Macht Eine Entdeckung, Die Das Schicksal Der Kinder Und Die Zukunft Der Menschen F R Immer Ver Ndern Wird This book and I got on a plane together, and if it hadn t been for the fact that we were both trapped in a small space with little else to do, we might have parted ways early on I didn t step smoothly into the first few chapters of Birthmarked My reading experience sort of tripped, stumbled, almost face planted At first the writing seemed quite dense and strangely formal I had some difficulty getting my head into the world possibly due to some pre conceived ideas I had about the book, which turned out to be pretty far off the mark Then I picked myself up, dusted myself off, and eventually, I found myself breaking into a page turning sprint okay, maybeof a jog, to be honest And I m not sure that metaphor really works, but you know what I mean. Translated, this basically means that the book grew on me and I found it got stronger the further I read I wasn t completely sure for the first third or so, but I did end up enjoying this book, particularly once the action shifted locations view spoiler from outside the wall to within the Enclave hide spoiler Words fail to adequately describe how astonishingly completely Caragh O Brien drew me into Gaia s dystopian world in this debut YA novel Holy cow BIRTHMARKED is a layered and action packed dystopian treat that just might satisfy readers eagerly awaiting the third and final installment of The Hunger Games series.I am absolutely bowled over by how well written this book is Caragh O Brien presents us with interesting characters that we want to follow through all their suspenseful adventures and encounters From Gaia, the determined everywoman protagonist, to the alluring and quietly troubled Captain Gray, to everyone who helps or harms Gaia along the way all are engaging and three dimensional to capture our attention from the start and hold on throughout.A dystopian novel is nothing without a well executed and faithfully imagined world gone wrong Luckily, Gaia s world is one of the best I ve read about in a long time, high up there with Suzanne Collins The Hunger Games and Maria Snyder s Poison Study BIRTHMARKED starts with a bang in the first chapter and never lets up There s plenty of mystery, code breaking, narrow escapes, and running to satisfy fans of action and adventure, and it s all wrapped within a fully realized dystopia.I don t think my review was enough to express my admiration of and love for this book, but rest assured that if this sounds even mildly interesting to you, then you will NOT be able to put it down