In the not too distant future, a 2nd civil war breaks out in the United States. Instead of a war between social classes or races, it is ultimately a war between the genders. Thanks to having access to technology, the women eventually win and they set about to genetically engineer and exterminate men out of existence. Such is the backdrop of the 2nd book in the REBELS trilogy by Lance Erlick.
The heroine of the series is a teenager named Annabelle Scott. Annabelle would do anything to live the life of a “normal” teenager, but she finds herself thrust into a conflict between different factions in the sector ruled by women. Along the way, she befriends a an escaped boy named Morgan who wants to flee with his brother outside the territory that is under feminine control. Outside of this new “civilization” built by women is the lawless countryside, known as the Outland. That’s where he wants to go.
During WWII, Oak Ridge, TN was where they physically built the 2 atomic bombs that were dropped on Japan (+ the atomic bomb that was tested over the desert). In the story, the facility has been converted into a detention center for young boys. Some end up being tortured and are the subject of sadistic medical experiments.
As such, there are subtle allusions to Aushwitz. Ironically, a facility in Tennessee that was built during the Manhattan Project to bring an end to Nazi opression (the war in Europe ended before they could drop the bomb on Berlin) is converted into the very means of injustice that it was built to stop. Interesting.
If you enjoy dystopia tales such as the The Hunger Games and Divergent, then chances are you will enjoy this trilogy. One thing is for certain: you will find yourself rooting for Annabelle and her sister Janine, the “good girls” who are trying to restore sanity to civilization!