It's possible I'm supposed to hate Youngest as much as I do, but it doesn't stop me from hating have to read about him instead of about characters (Meiji, the drones) who seemed more likely to be interesting. I'm not sure whether Padmanabhan thinks men are innately aggressive/evil or whether it's a result of all the men in the book having been raised in a misogynistic state, but the gender implications struck me as simplistic and unhelpful. Probably I am missing some nuance about India, but I cannot bring myself to care.
There will be a sequel, and I will not be reading it.
I am appalled that some reviewers read this as a romance. Seriously? Seriously?!?
(A small quiz. Your child, who has been in an arrested pre-adolescent state for some time, has now been allowed to mature naturally. You set out on a dangerous trip to escort her out of your misogynistic and femicidal country to another land. Do you:
(a) educate her about menstruation?
(b) plan to leave the country with her?
(c) if not planning to leave the country with her, tell her about it in advance?
(d) not get turned on by bathing her even before she develops breasts (you have raised her since she was an infant)?
(e) all of the above
(f) any of the above
(g) none of the above
Guess which our hero picks!)