BLURB from Goodreads
Helper12 works as a Baby Helper in Pre Ward, the place where babies spend their first six months of life before they’re tracked for vocations and sent to training. She does her job well, and she stays out of trouble. But one day, the Sloanes, Society members who enjoy all the privileges of their station—family unit clearance, a private dwelling, access to good food and good schools—come to “adopt” one of the Pre Ward babies. The Director makes a deal and the Sloanes walk out with a brand new child.
They also walk out owning Helper12—the Director sells her to them, and there’s nothing she can do but go. At the Sloanes, Helper12 enters a world where people should be able to enjoy life—with high position and riches come the opportunity for individual freedom, even the chance to love—but that’s not what she finds. The Sloanes are keeping secrets. So is their biological son, Thomas.
Helper12 has some secrets of her own; she’s drawing, which is a violation, since Baby Helpers aren’t tracked for Art. And she’s growing to love the child she was bought to care for—at the same time that Ms. Sloane is becoming disenchanted with her impulse baby buy.
When all your choices are made for you, how do you make some for yourself? Helper12 is about to find out.
Firstly I should point out that I read this in just the one sitting! it was silly O'Clock at night when I finally finished it and put it down. I had to know what happened. It is so well written, you are hooked into the book almost straight away.
The book is literally Helper12 and Baby4's tale, how a rich society lady can just waltz in and choose her child. In this society money buys you anything your heart desires and this woman desires a new son. Mrs Slone has two sons, Thomas and Gregory, but Gregory has disappointed and been literally hidden away and disposed of in her mind. When Mrs Sloane buys Baby4 she also needs someone to care for him in her home as she is planning a trip away with her husband for three weeks. So as well as buying Baby4 the Sloane's buy Helper12. No one from the lowly classes as in not society have names, well they have names that their baby helpers gave them but are not allowed to use them. The lowly classes are also encouraged to tell on each other if rules and regulations are broken.
Helper12 loves drawing, even though she knows its a risk, that even Kris the one she considers her best friend in this world would have to tell the authorities if she found out about Helper12's drawing. if Helper12 was ever found out her friend would have to serve double her own sentence just for the fact she hadn't told on her! Its a very restrictive life for the lowly classes, they cannot escape as they all have tatoo's on their arms as to correspond with their jobs. Helper12 was originally going to be a Breeder so she was tatooed with a B, then it was later decided, (Helper12 thinks she failed some test)that she should be a baby Helper so an H is tatooed over the B.
Helper12 see's a totally different way of life when she goes to the Sloanes home. Helper12 trusts no one its too dangerous, by being sold to the Sloanes if they decide they no longer want her she could be sent to the Labour camps,.......to die.
When the Sloane's go on the trip, Helper12 hear many whispers between the staff about the family. Helper12 gets to know Thomas, the son of the family.....but should she trust him. Thomas doesn't seem like other Society people, he...he seems to care about Baby4 or as Helper12 calls the little boy Jobee.He takes helper12 and Jobee out on outings. Thomas has his own secrets and upsets in his life.
There are many secrets within the Sloane household, that Helper12 hears about. When the Sloanes return from their trip Mrs Sloane doesn't seem interested in Jobee or William as she insists he be called. She refers to him as a "thing"
Helper12 is desperately worried as to what will happen if the Sloanes decide that they no longer want Jobee, as if they get rid of him, there will be no need for her either....... Thomas offers her a way out...but will she brave enough to take it?......Will they even make it?.....The place Thomas tells her about....does it even exist? I hope I haven't given away too much of the book I have purposely left things out for you to discover when you read the book. i really enjoyed this book and didn't want it to end, I wanted to knoe what was happening with Kris when Helper12 had disappeared, I wanted to learn more of Deen, Robert and Gregory and their tales.
I also think that the cover fits the book so well, the arm of Helper12 holding the strong arm and unmarked arm of Thomas the Society man.
Did I enjoy the book? Yes I could rattle on about it for ages! Would I recommend it? Yes, great dystopian society novel. Would I read more if there's a Series? Yes!
A MUST read!
Available at Amazon.co.uk