Nina Oberon's life is pretty normal: she hangs out with her best friend, Sandy, and their crew, goes to school, plays with her little sister, Dee. But Nina is 15. And like all girls she'll receive a Governing Council-ordered tattoo on her 16th birthday. XVI. Those three letters will be branded on her wrist, announcing to all the world -- even the most predatory of men -- that she is ready for sex. Considered easy prey by some, portrayed by the Media as sluts who ask for attacks, becoming a "sex-teen" is Nina's worst fear. That is, until right before her birthday, when Nina's mom is brutally attacked. With her dying breaths, she reveals to Nina a shocking truth about her past -- one that destroys everything Nina thought she knew. Now, alone but for her sister, Nina must try to discover who she really is, all the while staying one step ahead of her mother's killer.XVI will be published January 6th 2011 by Puffin/Speak.
There have been a lot of dystopia books being published in the YA market lately, is this a trend you are for or against?
Personally, I'm for any trend that involves a move away from what I fondly call vampire teen porn, and as long as the books are well written and well-edited and not being rushed to press just to capitalize on the trend, I think it's great that young adult books are tackling political issues the way dystopian literature tends to.