BREEDER, by K.B. Hoyle
It quickly becomes clear when reading Breeder, why K.B. Hoyle is an award-winning author. Specifically, Breeder, Book One of The Breeder Cycle, is a Literary Classics and a Readers’ Favorite award winner. From the opening pages, I knew that I was in for a treat. While I don’t read a lot of science fiction or dystopian stories, I can enjoy a well-thought through, well-constructed story in any genre—and Breeder certainly hit all of the marks for me.
K.B. Hoyle introduces readers to an approved Breeder for the Controlled Repopulation Program, who resides at Sanctuary. One of a group of young women that the Unified World Order (UWO) holds because they are of “perfect” genetic background, the breeders’ job is to be “happy” and to provide Contributions—in the form of newborns. Initially identifying only as resident number “Seventeen,” Hoyle’s young protagonist recalls (at the prompting of another) her former name: Pria. Not long thereafter, she finds herself questioning the system in which she lives and spirals into a deep depression. Later, during a visit to the medical unit, she meets Pax. Pax—who should long ago have met his end in that he exhibits physical characteristics that clearly identify him as one who is not of acceptable genetic lineage--convinces Pria that her life is in danger and that she should escape with him. The two manage to leave Sanctuary, then head into the mountains of the territory formerly known as Colorado. There they meet up with a group of renegades intent on bringing the UWO and its lies to an end. But first they need information to which only Pria can provide them access.
Breeder was a quick and very satisfying read. The characters were real, full, and interesting. The setting met the story. The world Hoyle built satisfied this reader’s expectations. To top it all off, Breeder concluded with a satisfying “end.” But even with all of that, this reader is delighted to know that there is more to come, in Criminal: The Breeder Cycle, Volume Two. I look forward to discovering more about Pria, Pax, and all of their newfound friends (and enemies!). If you enjoy YA or are looking for engaging, well-written, “clean” stories for young readers, look no further than Breeder.