The Declaration by Gemma MalleyThe Declaration by Gemma Malley

The Declaration

byGemma Malley

Paperback | September 1, 2008

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It's the year 2140 and Anna shouldn't be alive. Nor should any of the children she lives with at Grange Hall. The facility is full of kids like her, kids whose parents chose to recklessly abuse Mother Nature and have children despite a law forbidding them from doing so as long as they took longevity drugs. To pay back her parents' debt to Mother Nature, Anna will have to work for the rest of her life. But then Peter appears at the hall, and he tells a very different story about the world outside of the Grange. Peter begs Anna to escape Grange Hall, and to claim a life for herself outside its bleak walls. But even if they get out, they still have to make their way to London, to Anna's parents, and to an underground movement that's determined to bring back children and rid the world of longevity drugs.
GEMMA MALLEY studied philosophy at Reading University before working as a journalist. A successful author of women's fiction, The Declaration is her first book for young readers. She lives in London with her family.
Title:The DeclarationFormat:PaperbackProduct dimensions:320 pages, 7.83 × 5.12 × 0.88 inShipping dimensions:7.83 × 5.12 × 0.88 inPublished:September 1, 2008Publisher:Bloomsbury USALanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1599902958

ISBN - 13:9781599902951


Rated 5 out of 5 by from A favourite! I read this book for the first time years ago, perhaps even right around the time that it came out, and LOVED IT! I hadn't quite found what I was interested in at the time and picked up the book only to find a few pages in that I was in love with it! I have read it multiple times since then and have still been able to easily find what it is that I love about the novel with each read. An interesting topic, incredible plot twists and a hopeful story about friendship and perseverance! A favourite of mine that I would recommend to any aged reader!
Date published: 2017-05-18
Rated 4 out of 5 by from interesting I loved this book, it had good plot twists and futuristic concept.
Date published: 2017-03-05
Rated 4 out of 5 by from I really enjoyed this book! it's a really good and easy read in a utopian/distopian world. It came out long before hunger games and the books that followed so for me this was the first of it's kind of world build that I really enjoyed. Grade 11 English class has nothing on this novel in terms of keeping things interesting while still getting a point across. I looked forward to the next novels very much!
Date published: 2017-03-05
Rated 4 out of 5 by from The start is a bit boring but after you really start reading it's a real page turner. Overall a great book
Date published: 2014-02-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from This book had me gripped from page 1! Amazing characters anna, peter being the main the story that evolves around them in unforgettable read this book in 7 hours couldnt put it down. Every chapter had a new twist! If u loved hunger games i know you will love this! Thank you to Gemma Malley for this trilogy reading The Resistance right now! Must read!
Date published: 2014-01-22
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Interesting A world where no one dies from old age, as long as they sign a declaration stating they won't have kids so the world won't be in danger of overpopulation. People can still die of other causes but not of old age, as long as they take the pills that 'cures' it. People can still have kids but they have to abstain from signing, or some decide to have kids anyway and when they're found, the parents are jailed and the children are taken to Surplus halls. Grange Hall is one of those and that's where Anna, the main heroine, lives. When we meet Anna, she's the perfect surplus. She hates her parents for being so selfish for having her and she wants to be as useful as she can to make up for their selfishness. But as model a surplus as Anna seems, she does still have a streak of rebellion in her that's shown by her keeping a diary, a gift from a Legal whose house she'd cleaned. Surpluses aren't supposed to own possessions so having a diary is a big rule breaker but Anna does it anyway. The head mistress calls Anna to her office and tells her to prepare a room for a new surplus. Anna assumes it will be a Small, infant to toddler age, but instead she's told the boy is a teenager and she's shocked. Teenagers are never brought to Grange Hall. In comes Peter. Peter is the complete opposite of Anna. He claims to have been raised by Anna's parents and he's a rebellious free thinker. He's also there to tell Anna her parents love her and never stopped thinking or loving her and he's going to help her escape and reunite them. Anna thinks he should stop talking like that and be a good surplus like herself. Reading about Peter trying to convince Anna to go against the way she was raised to think really showed how disturbing the society was. Surpluses were abused and thought they deserved it. Peter often echoed my own thoughts. People shouldn't live forever, the kids weren't the surpluses, evil society. Even as rational as he was, it was a struggle to break through to Anna and I thought very realistic. There's a few twists close to the end, the first one gives information that helps us understand why the second one has to happen and it sets up for a sequel. Anna was brainwashed in Grange Hall, there's no other word for it, and it should make for an interesting read to see her back in the outside world. Out of all the dystopians I've read so far, this felt the most like it could actually happen one day.
Date published: 2012-09-21
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Interesting YA dystopian fiction Pros: thought provoking, fascinating premise, well executed, everyone has plausible motivations for their actions/ Cons: ending a little too pat, subject matter's dark for younger teens/ For Parents: no swearing, no sexual content, depictions of child abuse (beatings, brainwashing), threats of violence, murder, suicide/ Surplus Anna lives in Grange Hall, training to be a Valuable Asset. Her parents ignored the Declaration in order to have her, and it's her duty to repay the world for their selfishness by becoming a servant of Legals. She'll be sixteen soon and her time at Grange Hall is ending./ She's a good Surplus and Knows Her Place. The coming of a new boy, her age, much older than Surpluses are usually found, turns her life upside-down. He claims to know her parents. He claims to know a way to escape Grange Hall. He calls her Anne Covey./ Like the protagonist in 1984, Anne's first act of defiance regarding her life is to start a diary. Her infractions mount quickly./ The premise that in the future humans would learn how to prolong life - to live forever - is interesting, especially given that this book takes it to the next level: with no one dying, there's no room for kids. We're never completely told what the actual Declaration says, which would normally annoy me, but here worked to add tension and horror, at each new revelation. I also liked how Malley gave periodic insights into how the world of the future worked, especially the idea that people, knowing they'd have to deal with climate problems rather than their descendants, finally took steps towards curbing them./ Everyone has a plausible reason for why they act the way they do, including Mrs. Pincent, the House Matron, whose goal at the Hall is to break the children and make them hate their parents./ While there's no swearing or sexual content, there is a fair amount of violence, both verbal and physical abuse of children, murder and suicide. The book shows some of the realities of police states, where rights can be withdrawn on a whim and terror is a means of controlling people./ The ending is a bit contrived, all the plot lines a little too neatly tied up, but that's forgivable given the heavy nature of the book and the audience it's intended for.
Date published: 2011-09-23
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Amazing Concept and Story...Weak Characterization... I am not sure what exactly prevents me from giving this book a perfect score. I think the concept is awesome - truly an amazing idea. I think it was maybe because the majority of the book was from Anna's perspective and Anna was, well, kind of a boring person. Nothing special about her. Also, when the book delved into other character's minds, it seemed too limited - like they weren't revealing anything intimate enough about themselves. It was like this book was written in 1st person, but didn't have all of the special qualities that a book has when it is written in the 1st person. The other problem was pacing. All of the exciting moments of the book didn't seem to be built up properly...I found them all muddled in with other stuff going on in the book. But - WOW, the setting, the concept, the action, the ending - all very good. Makes me wonder if the author just needs to tweak her style. Or maybe it's just my style...I don't know. I am not usually too picky about these types of things. All in all, not an outstanding page turner, but good enough for me to read the sequels.
Date published: 2011-08-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Inventive and interesting! I absolutely loved this story. It's set in the future where having children is illegal unless you forgo your chances at living forever. Children are raised to believe they are parasites and no one dies of old age or disease. I found the main character captivating, frustrating, smart, and real. I recommend this book to anyone who loves a good dystopic novel and is looking for a conversation starter! Can't wait for the sequel!
Date published: 2010-06-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Absolutely loved this! The Declaration is a story about Anna. It is set in the year 2140 where immortality is common among everyone--as long as you take the Longevity drugs. Now that everyone is able to live forever, children have become illegal because otherwise the world would be way too populated. By signing The Declaration, you agree to not have children and you would receive the Longevity drugs that will keep you immortal. If you Opt Out, then your supply of Longevity drugs will disappear and you can have children, but that is seen as suspicious by everyone else. If you have children anyways without Opting Out, then, according to The Declaration's A Life for a Life, you will be terminated and your child will be taken away. Those who are born illegally are called Surplus children. They are taken away from their parents and are put into Grange Hall which is led by a malicious lady named Mrs. Pincent. Here, the Surpluses are taught to Know Their Place, to repay Mother Nature for being a Surplus, and to stay invisible. If you misbehave or just look at something the wrong way, you will get a beating, lose your meal, and maybe even get sent to Solitary. For years, Anna has worked from being a Small, to a Middle, to a Pending. And now she was on her way to becoming one of the most Valuable Assets, meaning that she will soon be able to work for those who are worthy of living on the planet--the ones with the Longevity drugs. Then suddenly, a new Pending is brought into Grange Hall. Peter is different from everyone else. He doesn't Know His Place, he seems to know a bit too much about the Outside, and he claims that he knows Anna's parents. When he starts telling stories about the Underground Movement, declaring that The Declaration is wrong and immoral, Anna doesn't know what to believe. She lived her entire life being told that she is worthless, stupid, and useless, and she had accepted that. When she was punished, she would repeat to herself that she has no place on this planet and that she doesn't deserve to live. She was brought up hating her parents for being selfish for having her and not thinking about The Declaration. But now Peter comes along and tells her that she has parents who love her and miss her and that she must escape with him from Grange Hall. Was she willing to leave everything she ever knew behind to go with a boy who seems to feed her lie after lie? The Declaration was an incredible novel with so much depth in it it just left me breathless. Anna is an amazing protagonist and you couldn't help but put yourself in her shoes to see the world as she knew it. She was so indoctrinated by Mrs. Pincent and all the other Legals that you just wanted to keep reading to find out what would happen to her in the end. Peter was also such an amazing character because he was so different from Anna. He was brought from the Outside into Grange Hall, whereas Anna was brought up in Grange Hall. The two different views were clashed together and you didn't know which one was true. The feelings and emotions were so strong, it was like your heart was being ripped out each time Anna or Peter was slapped or beaten. I honestly could not put this book down. It held on to me with a tight grasp and never let go, even now when I have finished the book. I have the sequel, The Resistance, here at the ready and I cannot wait to get started on that one. Five humongous stars out of five!
Date published: 2010-01-28
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Very Good. Pretty good book. I don't have many complaints about it. A bit predictable. There was one twist to it though that I didn't see coming though. The character of Anna is supposed to be 15 but kind of sounds like a 10 year old. That was the only thing that really annoyed me. Really gets you thinking about what the future could hold for us though. Definitely recommend it to other people.
Date published: 2009-01-18
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Excellent! In the Declaration, immortality is a common occurrence. Unfortunately, immortality means a population explosion. It means no children are allowed to be born. And if they are…well, they end up in Grange Hall. Surplus Anna has lived in Grange Hall for her whole life. She’s subservient and believes that she doesn’t belong on this Earth-and now that she is, well, she has to do the bidding of those who do belong on Earth. Those with immortality. But then, Peter comes along and begins to challenge everything Anna has ever believed in… I found this book really intriguing. It’s one of those books where you constantly find yourself putting yourself in the character’s world and wondering what you would do. If it was me (even without, considering the “child” issue), I think I would be an Opt-out. I don’t think that I would ever want to live forever. But, then again, with all the pressure in that society, I can't know what I would actually do. I found some parts of the book really predictable but others less so. There were moments when Gemma Malley just threw a surprise at you. These were moments when I was either slapping my head and thinking, oh, the irony or ones where I was pretty much thinking, duh. Anyway, I really liked the fact that although the people in the world were immortal, they weren’t invulnerable. They could be killed-they were just irresistible to disease. And, as Cassie mentioned in her review, it was interesting how the people were immortal but were still susceptible to aging. I thought the book was well-done especially since it’s written by a first time novelist (I really liked the journal entries) and the characters were fairly well-fleshed out. When I started the book, I was almost…creeped out by Anna’s subservience and so I was wondering how the author would turn everything Anna believed in inside-out in a believable way. And, I wasn’t disappointed. The novel reminded me a little of Unwind by Neal Schusterman and the Hidden Children saga by Margaret Peterson Haddix as they both have kids escaping from societal norms (that usually involve exploiting children) in the future. If you liked one of those books, I’d definitely recommend this one. It’s thought-provoking and even though it’s lacking in action, I still found it impossible to put down. Besides, I bet the sequel will have more action.
Date published: 2008-07-13