By Megan McCafferty
April 26, 2011
Balzer + Bray, 336 pages
When a virus makes everyone over the age of eighteen infertile, would-be parents pay teen girls to conceive and give birth to their children, making teens the most prized members of society. Girls sport fake baby bumps and the school cafeteria stocks folic-acid-infused food.
Sixteen-year-old identical twins Melody and Harmony were separated at birth and have never met until the day Harmony shows up on Melody’s doorstep. Up to now, the twins have followed completely opposite paths. Melody has scored an enviable conception contract with a couple called the Jaydens. While they are searching for the perfect partner for Melody to bump with, she is fighting her attraction to her best friend, Zen, who is way too short for the job.
Harmony has spent her whole life in Goodside, a religious community, preparing to be a wife and mother. She believes her calling is to convince Melody that pregging for profit is a sin. But Harmony has secrets of her own that she is running from.
When Melody is finally matched with the world-famous, genetically flawless Jondoe, both girls’ lives are changed forever. A case of mistaken identity takes them on a journey neither could have ever imagined, one that makes Melody and Harmony realize they have so much more than just DNA in common.
From New York Times bestselling author Megan McCafferty comes a strikingly original look at friendship, love, and sisterhood—in a future that is eerily believable.
— Amazon.com description
My friend Carla put her love of Megan McCafferty this way: "If I had to choose one author to read for the rest of my life, right now, right this second, I would pick her. And probably if you asked me again next week, my answer would be the same."
Megan's only written one other series, and it wasn't even young adult. So why are readers like Carla (and me) such ardent fans?
Here's why: So many authors seem to skirt around issues, afraid to impression impressionable young minds. And they seem to perpetuate the idea of perfect, eternal, destined romance.
Megan? Nope. Megan doesn't do that BS.
I crave that. I WANT my books to make an impression. And, as someone who is madly in love, let me tell you one thing I know for sure: Love ain't perfect, honey. I love me a love story. And I usually whine if there's not a happy ending. But real life? Yeah. It's not that predictable.
Megan's Jessica Darling series is the epitome of imperfect romance. You hate Jessica, you love Jessica; you hate Marcus, you love Marcus. It shows that it's not only okay to make mistakes, but that it's actually sometimes better if you do. How else do you grow as a person?
Bumped is no different. Sure, at first glance, it's a big departure from this series. It's set in an alternative universe, for goodness' sake.
But it's still so Megan to brazenly take on the hot-button issue of teenage sex and to somehow, amid all the humor and snark, make you empathize with both sides. You'll hate Melody, you'll love Melody; you'll hate Harmony, you'll love Harmony. It'll make you supremely uncomfortable. The lingo will have you scratching your head.
That's the point. Reading a Megan McCafferty book is a roller coaster ride. But that's life, baby. Hang on tight.
Want more? Read a great review by Phoebe North here, then jump over here to check out Katya's absolutely perfect description as to why Jessica and Marcus are my all-time favorites.