In the last surviving cities of a ruined world, the concept of “woman” has been forgotten to history. Those unfortunate enough to lack a Y chromosome live as second-class citizens in a world dominated by mascs.
Ember is Y negative. He is scorned, bullied, abused by every masc he encounters, at work and at the gym. Not even his Y negative roommate cuts him any slack. He wants so desperately to be accepted as a masc that he’d rather buy black market testosterone than food. Something’s gotta give—he needs a change in his life, but has no idea how to find it.
Jess is a masc with a passion for studying the recovery of their devastated world. His boyfriend is pressuring him for more commitment, and his father expects him to take over the family business. He can’t wait to get away from civilization for his seasonal research out in the wild.
When Jess offers Ember a job, their lives collide in the isolated wasteland, and their initial attraction turns into a relationship that horrifies those around them. Soon their struggle to stay together and to be who they are turns into a fight for their lives.
Wow! Y Negative is unlike anything else I have read. It has a dystopian feel, but woman do not exist in this society except to breed with the masc group. Males rule and everyone is referred to by masculine gender pronouns. Women are referred to as Y negatives and after they are done being used as surrogates a few times, their breasts are cut off and they are given hormones to make them andros. Ember is a y negative by birth, but he has always felt like a masc. He takes black market testosterone and works out to look manlier, but that doesn’t stop the teasing and poor treatment he receives. Jess is a compassionate masc and doesn’t fully understand why their society works the way it does. I wish Jess’s backstory was explored more, because he seemed to be a likable characters. Also, the story seems very fast paced and rushed – especially the last third of the book.
While this has the potential to be a great story, I was left with more questions than I should have been, unless this is the beginning of a series.