Extinction Of All Children

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 15 May 2019

Member Reviews

I was so pleasantly surprised. I liked the description of the book, but the title was a little "not so" interesting. I decided to give it a try based on the description and I'm truly glad I did. I really enjoy a good dystopian and I hadn't read a one in a while. This one fit the bill. I connected with Emma right away and can't wait to see how her story continues. Dystopians always come with a little unbelievability, but this one didn't go completely off the rails and it was fast moving to really keep my interest. Just to forewarn though, it is a cliffhanger. I'm so glad I also received the other 2 books from NetGalley and I will definitely be reading and reviewing them shortly.
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Extinction of All Children bears some resemblance to The Hunger Games - a “district” that is oppressed, in this case by not allowing its residents to have children; a rebellious heroine; an incipient love triangle, present tense narration (which I am decidedly not fond of but which seems to be a continuing trend) - but is different enough that it doesn’t feel like a ripoff to me. Emma Whisperer is the last child born in Territory L, the lowest of three territories in the nation of Craigluy based on class, and she is turning 18. Before she was born, the president (a president for life, so actually a dictator), decided that the lower classes would no longer be allowed to have children whom (in her view) they could not care for. If a woman is found to be pregnant she is imprisoned and forced to carry the child to term, after which it is supposedly killed. The outspoken Emma is invited to a celebration of her birthday where she is expected to read a prepared speech praising the president but uses her moment in the spotlight to speak passionately against the policy, whereupon she is imprisoned in the presidential residence for 30 days. Before her term ends, she is forced to make what seems to her an impossible choice, which later turns into a plan to help bring down the hateful system.

While I did like Emma and I assume that the reasons for the president’s inexplicable favoritism towards her will be revealed at some point (I don’t think her previous friendship with Emma’s parents is a good enough reason and I have a guess, but only time will tell if it’s right), I had some problems with the book. 

1) The worldbuilding seemed to be cursory at best. Craigluy is supposed to be located between California and Arizona, so is presumably carved out of pieces of both, but there is no explanation for its existence or indeed, whether or not the US even still exists, only 60 years from the present. There is a reference to the seasons being “messed up,” so presumably climate change has had an effect, but technology and infrastructure seem to be intact. Virtually no people make more than a brief appearance besides Emma’s family and the people in the presidential residence (mostly guards), so I could not really get a feel for the society. One of the things that flummoxed me the most was that “free birth control” is handed out to the residents of Territory L - they never specify as far as I can remember, but I would assume it would be pills and possibly condoms - but even now there are implants available that last for months, as well as IUDs. Surely they would be at least that well equipped in 2080.

2) In my opinion, “President Esther” has to be one of the most incompetent dictators in fiction, or possibly ever, and I’m surprised she has stayed in power for what seems to be over 20 years. She seems to spend an awful lot of time - if she doesn’t actually live there - in the territory with the reason to hate her the most, as well as allowing people from that territory to be her guards with what seems like minimal screening - armed and trained in deadly force, and in her presence almost constantly. She has no surveillance in at least her short-term jail, which is located in her residence. She appears to have very little surveillance within the residence itself, so her prisoners, if left alone by their guards, can pretty much wander around at will. Finally, while she has built walls (shades of 2019 America) between the territories which appear to work far better than any walls in the real world, vehicles are allowed to cross from one to another without being searched.

Despite these flaws, it did interest me enough that I intend to (at some point) check out the second book in the series to see what happens and if any of the things that bothered me are addressed. I would also acknowledge that the target audience for this series (YA) might not find these things a problem.

I received this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
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I wasn't sure what to expect when I received this book, but I suddenly found myself half way through it and hanging on every word! I can't even envision a word that would kill babies after they are born to punish the parents for having them. Oh, and senseless slaughter of animals....just horrible. So much injustice...  I am so glad I was permitted to read it. And now I have learned that is the first in a series. My summer is now perfect. I have to buy the set and see how it all pans out. Great YA book!
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The last child ever has turned 18. Babies are illegal and any child born will be exterminated. The problem?  People are too poor and the poor aren’t allowed to breed. 

This dystopian novel follows the last child who was allowed to live as she explores what being the last child means. We learn quickly that she’s covering for her sister who had a baby and is in hiding. We then follow as she rebels against the government to stand up for humanity. 

It’s a good quick read. Not the best character development, and the story is pretty surface level, but still worth the read. First in a series.
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Loved this book!! Kept my attention and was full of intrigue and action right from the beginning. The writing seemed choppy at times, but it wasn’t terrible and the book definitely has great potential. I can’t wait to get the other books in the series!
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This is the first book by L.J Epps that I have read, and I must say I really enjoyed the read. It was a little slow to start, but I kept reading and while I was reminded of . Hunger Games and some other dystopian at times it did lure me in and I was hooked until I finished the book.
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I enjoy a good science fiction, and Extinction Of Call Children , by  LJ Epps  is a well written.  I enjoyed this book very much. The only thing wrong was it was not long enough for me. It left me wanting more.
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Thank you to NetGalley, the publisher and the author for providing me an ARC in exchange for my candid review.

This series had possibilities. But aspects of the writing style bothered me. The author repeatedly explained modern conveniences such as the automatic lights. Multiple, multiple times. The writing style was somewhat immature and unpolished. 

The story line was an interesting concept about a segregated part of the country that was further subdivided by a ruthless dictactor for life who broke the country into Territory L (Lower Class), Territory M (Middle Class), and Territory U (Upper Class). The heroine is the last child permitted to be born in Territory L because the president will not allow anyone to have children in the territory. These books are her adventures into making changes to the repressive regime.

I read all three books but would only mildly recommend them to others.
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I received an ARC of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.   


This is a truly unique storyline.        I wasn't sure if I'd love this book, but I truly did.
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I received a free copy of this book from the author. I had the opportunity to review or not.

While I enjoyed this book, the first of a trilogy, I found it a bit stilted. A young woman, Emma Whisperer, lives in Territory L. The L stands for low income where rules are stringent and unreasonable. Rules that Emma believes are too much to follow and rebels against them. 

President Esther of Territory L, is also president of two other territories, Territory M, and Territory U. The President was responsible for the division of Craigluy, the original, complete territory into the three territories. L is where low income people live, where the rules are the most difficult, where babies are not allowed, where it is difficult to improve yourself. Where life is drudgery!

Emma’s circumstances give her the opportunity to speak out against the injustices of Territory L. As a result, she and some similar thinking friends wind up on the run. Emma wants to change things and takes the opportunity to head into Territory M, where she believes her sister’s forbidden baby might have been taken.

There is much more to this story. Ms. Epps’ characters are interesting and full of life, if a little on the grey side. Her description of the world of Territory L is well described. It is easy to see the grey world where Emma and her family reside. I look forward to the second book, Journey to Territory M, Emma’s continuing search for her sister’s baby and a better way of life.
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I'm undecided how much I like this book but it did catch my attention.  It is very reminiscent of another book with fight to the death game with kids, except that isn't the concept here.  Here it is another tyrannical leader making decisions for the populous that aren't very fair.  Our lead, Emma, is the last child of her territory who just turned 18, there are 3 territories and she lives in the poorest.  Don't worry, I'm not spoiling anything.  She is a strong willed, take nothing from anyone type of chick.  She knows inherently that the situation in her territory is wrong even though they try to brainwash them into thinking its for the best.  

Its a quick read and it is interesting.  We follow Emma and her fight against the President.  She meets some new people along the way, many of whom seem to immediately fall for her.  Its the beginnings of teen love triangles, a rebellion, and bringing a family back together.  I think if I was a teen or early 20's I may have been more into it.  I liked it but Emma is so bull headed and young, its frustrating.  She is learning though so I do want to continue the series.  Its more like 3.5 stars form me but only because I am still deciding if I like Emma enough to deal with her immaturity and the boys just falling at her feet.  It's not really believable for me...yet.   

I will move on to book two because I kind of want to see where the story goes.
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I personally did not feel I was connecting with any of these characters or even the storyline. This book captured my attention from the description of The Hungers Games fans, but it just didn’t have the details to go with the description.
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The main plot begins with Emma being invited to a large banquet for her 18th birthday. President Esther has planned the event with the idea Emma will give a speech there, to celebrate not only Esther, but all the laws she’s brought in. She must say how happy she is there are no more children starving or being neglected, and that she’s blessed to have been the last, but cherishes Esther’s choice. The speech sits uneasily with Emma though, and the first question posed in this novel is simple – can she bring herself to lie?
Her decision, and all the choices she must make afterwards, is the driving force of the story. Much like Katniss volunteering as tribute, or Trice choosing Dauntless in Divergent, Emma is hurtled down a path that will not only prove who she is inside but show the world who the people leading them really are. I mention those two books for a reason, and that’s because Extinction of all Children follows that very familiar Dystopian YA formula we’ve come to know and enjoy. There’s the toughed, but internally naïve leading lady. The corrupt, morally jaded government. And there’s the small group of people within the system open to change, who will, in the end, be the reason the main character gets to where they need to be. It’s comfortable, and a formula we’re used to, but the plot itself is unique enough for this to stand happily on its own. Fans of Hunger Games, Divergent, and even Maze Runner, I feel, will enjoy this thoroughly. 

To get into specifics for a moment, the book is written in 1st person, and features Emma as the only narrator throughout, a style I feel is standard for the genre. It’s paced well, with the events happening in a steady stream, with enough time in between for Emma’s thoughts to come into play. There’s a lot of internalisation in this novel, and while that could annoy some – as there is quite a bit of telling, not showing – for me, I was quite happy with that style choice. I would be mindful of that though if you’re not a fan.

This book doesn’t attempt to be anything it’s not, which I applaud, but there’s a forced love triangle in the plot that annoyed me just as much as the one in Hunger Games or Twilight did. I say forced as it’s obvious from the start who Emma will choose, and all the set-up ends with something lacklustre and uninspiring. The plot wouldn’t suffer without it, which says a lot. 

Another thing which springs to mind, that I drop on my knees and plead is explored in the rest of the series, is why Esther is so lenient towards Emma. She could have her shot, and jobs done, but she seems to almost enjoy the insubordination, and I desperately wish that was either noticed in this novel or is explained later. It’s incredibly frustrating, and I feel goes against Esther’s character, but until I’ve read the rest of the series, I’ll hold off on having a set-in stone opinion on this one.

All in all, though, my other critique on this novel are minor. I wish there was stronger character development in the side characters, more exploration of District L with clearer descriptions on where everything was, and a touch more realism in how things go down, but these are all things that can be done as the story progresses. That’s something I enjoyed about this novel. It’s a great set up for a series and isn’t inclusive in its plot. The sequels shouldn’t be read as standalones, as this explains a lot about the world and how it came to be, and there is powerful development in important characters. Esther for example, isn’t portrayed as cold or uncaring, she’s revealed to have logic in her choices, even if they’re unpopular opinions.

I also enjoyed the pacing. I know I’ve mentioned it already, but I truly enjoyed the flow of this book. I didn’t get bored or turn pages to get to the next bit, as I’m known to do even with things I love and feel something new happened exactly when it needed to. Furthering that, I liked the plot twists and surprises. I could tell when something would happen, but exactly what wasn’t premeditated, a great feature for any work targeted towards young adults.
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I received a complimentary copy of Extinction of All Children from NetGalley, in return for my honest opinion.

Extinction of All Children by L. J. Epps is the first book in a trilogy and is a story about standing up for your beliefs. President Esther has split Craigluy into three territories- L, M, and U- by class. L is the largest and poorest territory. Many of the inhabitants of territory L dream of moving up to territory M and then maybe territory U. The laws aren’t exactly the same for the three territories; the residents of Craigluy cannot move freely through the territories. Only the president can decide if the residents can move and live in different territories.

It’s the year 2080 and Emma Whisperer is the last child to turn 18, in territory L. All the children born after Emma’s birth, were murdered per President Esther’s orders. It is now against the law to become pregnant and any babies born are killed.

President Esther holds a celebratory dinner in honor of Emma’s 18th birthday. The president writes a speech that she expects Emma to give, to show the residents of Craigluy that she supports the president and her laws. Emma can’t lie and ends up jailed. While imprisoned, Emma befriends a couple of guards- Samuel and Eric. They both tell her that she’s inspiring others to stand up and those people are looking for someone to lead them in these efforts.

This was an easy and fast read- great for fans of The Hunger Games and Divergent series. My only complaint about this book was that it seemed to end with no resolution. I know this was done purposely to ensure that I read the next book. However, it wasn’t a very long book and if the story was one book instead of three, I still would have read it.

Goodreads Rating: 3/5 stars

#ljepps #extinctionofallchildren #netgalley #dystopia #ya #youngadult #youngadultbooks #readin2019
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This book is scary but not in a horror way. It felt so real that I felt like I was living in that world. It's a terrifying world to think about but the book was wrote very well. The characters are real as is the world.
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Emma Whisperer was born in 2080 and is the last child allowed to live in her territory. The territories are broken down into three sections separated by class, the rich, the working class and the poor. 

All children born in Emmas territory after here are killed. The President doesn't believe that the poor should be allowed to have children.  The President has announced that a party will be thrown for Emma on her 18th birthday to honor the last child born in her territory, Territory L. This unexpected event results in an array of troubles for Emma, who do
esn't agree with the president.

Emma takes a stand and this results in her being jailed however rather than tame her it results in her becoming more of a rebel resulting in some dangerous choices.

Emma is a strong character and the story line is reminiscent of the Divergent and Hunger Games Trilogy's. This in an excellent start to a new trilogy series and am looking forward to seeing what Emma will do.
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I wasn't sure what to expect, but I enjoyed reading this. An interesting story with fun characters. Well written.
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What happens if one lives in a vastly controlled society where reproduction is out of the question? What if you are the last person that was allowed to be born? If you can imagine anything thing with these last two questions make sure to read this book.

That is all I will say say about this. Just read it.
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The journey of Emma is an exciting adventure.  Throughout the story, you can't help but question the secrets that exist.  The strength and resilience of Emma is one that cannot be measured as she demonstrates her ability to be a strong female role model.  The conflicts Emma faces are difficult and as a reader you empathize for her need to make a choice.  The novel leaves you wanting more and more.
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Rating: 1 out of 5 stars.

ARC is provided through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

“I guess I should rephrase that. She isn’t like you. She is weak. She would let my father abuse her, and she would just take it.” He blinks a few times. “I’m not saying she should have fought back, but she could have at least told somebody or left him.”

Emma tries her best to help her sister who’s had an illegal child in a society where having children is forbidden. She lives in a society divided into three territories – L, M, and U – and the rules are strict and punishable with prison. Children born illegally are taken away from their mother and killed.
Emma, the last eighteen-year-old, in territory L, is expected to attend a party in honor to herself, and during this party the president wants her to hold a speech. As she refuses to bend, Emma holds a speech that lands her ass directly in prison and this is where she spends most of this book.

I don’t even know where to begin with this review. When I read the quote I have at the top, I had to put the book down and go rant to my boyfriend – and boy, was my rant long. I am still ranting because I still feel disgusted after reading this book.

On average it takes an abused woman seven tries to leave her abuser. Some never leave, and some never get the chance to. Having the love interest in a YA-book convey a message about abused women being weak is beyond nauseating, and Emma not reacting accordingly makes it even worse!
I would have been all for it if a secondary character, like Rich, had this opinion. Then it could have been used as a learning moment, considering Emma kicks his ass later in the story.
Women being weak both mentally and physically is a recurring theme in the story – given through characters Emma trust – and giving this message to a younger audience… seriously, what the fuck?

Don’t get me wrong, not everything in books can be flowers and rays of sunshine. I mentioned in another book review I wrote that sexual assault was a threat throughout the entire story, but it was from secondary characters, and the main characters knew morally that assaulting each other is wrong.
At least in YA-books, I think the main character and the love interest should display healthy thinking and morals – unless the story warrants it and uses it as a teaching moment (such as the main character realizing such behavior is unhealthy). I remember watching the movie adaption of the book ‘The Kissing Booth’, and I was horrified by the fact that the main character swooned over the abusive behavior of her love interest. I was even more horrified when I learned that teenage girls swooned over him too.

Take into consideration that these characters are eighteen and older, and Eric is a guard employed by the president, he’s not a child anymore. I surely hope he’s got a lot of character development coming for him because he needs to grow up – years ago.
I should also mention that Eric himself was not abusive in the book, it was just his opinion that was disturbing.

Okay, so that was my rant about horrible views towards women. Let’s have a go at the writing, shall we?
The plot is basically Emma getting imprisoned early in the story, and that’s about it. She spends her time training with the guards because apparently, that is what prisoners do – or at least Emma because she’s special. Everyone treats her like a snowflake, and while others think she’s pretty, she thinks of herself as bland – go figure.

During the first few chapters, there was the unnatural and robotic “as you all know…” info-dump through dialogue. When the characters present during this dialogue already know the information given to them, it’s unnecessary to have another character repeat it. There are tons of other ways to convey the information the author wants us to know.
Also, everyone above the age of eighteen is given free birth-control to avoid pregnancies. No one below eighteen gets them, because they are not allowed to have sex. When has that ever stopped a teenager from doing whatever they are not allowed to?

There were quite a few repetitive sentences and wordings in this book, such as “made my stomach queasy”, and the word “quake” showed up a lot. It pulled me out of the story, and here too there are numerous ways to describe what she’s feeling.

Upon meeting Emma, a lot of characters feel the urge to spill their entire life story to her. Because that is what people do when they meet each other for the first time. Especially a few of the guards gave up a shitload of information while she was a prisoner – not doing much of a decent job there, aye?

I also get a faint smell of a love triangle, although it’s not explored too much because Emma herself is unsure about the other character’s intentions.

Anyhow, I don’t recommend this book at all. I am done ranting now.
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