What I’m Reading – Unclaimed by Erin Cupp

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Hi, Aadi here. This week, I am reading Unclaimed by Erin Cupp. This sci-fi adaptation of Jane Eyre is a fun read with interesting technology and secret codes. Weaving codes into fabric is ingenious. I will have to pass on this information to Father Teil, maybe we can use it in Nacerma to help spread the faith.

Anyway, check out the book.

Unclaimed by Erin Cupp
Category: Young Adult
Genre: Fantasy/Science Fiction

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Born not in a past of corsets and bonnets but into a future of cloning and bioterror, could Jane Eyre survive? This Jane is an “unclaimed embryo,” the living mistake of a reproductive rights center–or so her foster family tells her. At age ten she is sold into slavery as a data mule, and she must fight for freedom and identity in a world mired between bioscientific progress and the religions that fear it. What will happen to a girl without even a name of her own?

Excerpt from Chapter 2:

Abot unlocked and opened the door to the attic with her manipulating arm. She maneuvered the clamp, still holding me fast, over her head, lifting me a total of five feet in the air. This allowed her legs to navigate the stairs safely. At this point I stopped my thrashing, fearful that one wrong move would tumble me out of Abot’s grip, down the stairs to a broken neck. Then, a thought came to me. Unlikely, but worth trying.

“Abot,” I said in my deepest, coldest voice–a voice geared to sound most like Mrs. VanDeer’s. “Release, please.”

Nothing happened. I could not foil that voice recognition.

My dread-borne paralysis gave way to trembling. We reached the top of the stairs, and Abot turned ninety degrees. Looking down from my near-ceiling altitude through the dimly lit cloud of swirling dust, I beheld the capsule.

It was about seven feet tall, three feet wide, three feet deep, edges curved all around.

It lay in state, leaned into the murkiest corner of the shadowy attic. It was constructed in two pieces, like a vertically hinged Easter egg designed to hold a human body. The bottom portion was of some sturdy, insulatory beige polymer that reflected the low light with muted shine. The top half was clear, so that the body placed inside could be observed during its recuperation or passing.

Downstairs I could hear Clint crying and Mrs. VanDeer soothing him. “Foster children are always a problem, statistically,” she said, “never mind the tax breaks you get for having them. What was your father thinking, expecting me to keep an unstable like her? Everyone knows foster children are much more likely to have ADHD, PAD, SDD–”

Ah, yes, the litany of disorders. I’d heard this countless times before.

Abot pressed a button on the capsule with her manipulation arm. As the hinges eased open, I wondered: why couldn’t I have been adorably blond like Nancy? Or sharp and calculating enough to pass my trouble to others like Jacki? Or even just a boy like Clint? Instead I was an ugly, hyper, and now violent statistic.

Abot thrust me into the capsule, released her clamp, and I fell in a heap at the capsule’s bottom. As I righted myself, my ears rang again, and my stomach heaved with dizziness. Abot pushed the lid down, and I pressed my hands against the seam to keep it open, only to be rewarded for my troubles when it closed anyway, biting my fingers. The capsule’s seal hissed shut. Fans began pumping in the oxygen.

 

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