"Jericho's Wall" by Pamela Young

"Freedom is a dangerous game in a one world society. The year is 2097 and the world is under control from Lord Jericho Baal. For the last two-hundred years he has eliminated those elites who wanted to control the world and has taken that position for himself. By reducing the surplus population from eight billion to a mere 216 million workers- - - all of whom are necessary to support his lavish lifestyle- - - he now enjoys the pristine world to himself. Joshlynn Fellows, a 15-year-old field worker, realizes that life has to mean more than this. When her mother is taken away and killed by the Removers because she was approaching the required end-of-life age of 50, she finally decides that escaping to freedom is her only chance, even if it results in her own death. "

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There's a modern relatability in Jericho's Wall, Pamela Young's third novel and possible new series. Set in the future of a government controlled world, where everyone is told what job they can have, how many children they're allowed to have, and where they're allowed to live, Jericho's Wall, as the title suggests, is run by a Lord Jericho Baal. The world now contains android beings known as Monitors who listen and watch everyone to keep an uprising from happening while laser-armed drones keep an eye on everything else.

Our main character Joshlynn, who's going on 16, is preparing to take her Forever Test, which tells her what her permanent profession will be the rest of her life. Everyone has to take this test in this world, and they have no say in what their profession will be, but to Joshlynn's surprise, she gets to become a doctor, something she secretly wanted to do for a living. While receiving this great news, Joshlynn also gets bad news about her mother, someone who has been sick for awhile, collapsed in the fields while working and was taken away by the Removers. These androids (maybe even people - - - it's never specified in the book) take people away when they are no longer of use to the community and kill them, and this is what happened to Joshlynn's mother. At first, Joshlynn is affected by this, but nearing the second day later, it seems as if she just forgets about it. Joshlynn moves on with her life that very night, being taken from a rundown apartment to an uptown apartment by Monitors, where hospital staff are housed- - - this apartment compared to her former one is like moving from living in your car to a fully furnished house.

She begins to intern with a cranky nurse named Magda, learning about medications and herbal remedies that the hospital uses. She also begins to work alongside a doctor named 'Cat' McBride, a nice and likable character, who shows her some of the patients, but memorably, the nursery. This is one of the most emotional parts of the story because, not only are parents not allowed to raise their own children (which they can only have one), but if the child is born with a defect, the doctors are ordered to let the baby starve to-death. Readers learn that the logic of Lord Baal is that a child with a defect is just that and of no use to the community.

But the upside of Joshlynn working at the hospital is that she meets a couple of people who become close friends of her's: Suz, a young woman who has been working at the hospital for nearly two years, and Grif, a trouble-making patient that is staying at the hospital for the time being. Later, Joshlynn finds out that the two are planning to make an escape to the 'wilderness,' which is the wooded areas surrounding the communities that are forbidden to enter by none other than Lord Baal.

There's not much more I can say about Jericho's Wall without giving away major points of the story. It was a very enjoyable quick read that I didn't want to put down, but that didn't make it flawless; like most books, there were inconsistencies here and there, but also there were some things that just didn't make sense. I don't think casual readers will notice these things without really looking for them. I, personally, just don't like inconsistencies in the stories I read.

I think young readers who enjoyed the Maze Runner (you can click the link to read my review of the first book from the series) will like Jericho's Wall.

My rating:

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