About the Book
Title: The Cure
Author: Tania Hagan
Published: February 16th, 2016
Publisher: Crushing Hearts and Black Butterfly Publishing
Genre: YA Dystopian
Content Warning: Mild violence, romantic scenes, mild foul language
Eighteen-year-old Genesis Weatherby is a clone of a long-dead silent-screen star. In order to eradicate cancer, GOD–the Genetic Operations Division–only allows procreation by way of the code-regeneration system. All of her life, Genny has learned “Original” births are the greatest threat to the cancer-free world. But, what happens when dashing British newcomer, Nat Wilkinson, steps into her perfect life, and overturns everything she ever believed?
Buoyed by their love for each other, as well as by their mutual distrust of GOD, Nat and Genny hatch a dangerous plan to change the system, one child at a time.
About the Author
Tania Hagan has been a writer most of her adult life. The Cure is her first work of fiction. Tania resides in Chicago with her husband, her daughter, and her three dogs.
That night, I was no longer Genny Weatherby. She was dead. At least, she might as well have been dead. For the life of me, I couldn’t remember who I was now supposed to be. I had used her name like it was my own earlier in the day. I had thrown it out there, and I’d owned it. But, at the moment, it escaped me. I knew it didn’t really matter. Whoever she was, she looked just like me. Everyone on that list looked just like me.
I made a halfhearted attempt to pull her name into my head as I crouched behind the stack of alfalfa bales. The storage shed, which was little more than a roof supported by eight tall metal posts, provided little shelter for me.
I knew I was not out in the open, so I couldn’t be discovered. Despite the imperfect nature of my hiding place, at least I was hidden.
I tried to relax a bit since I had already been there for half an hour. He’d told me to stay in the car, but I’d felt trapped. Plus, if anyone came looking for us, the first place they would look would be the car. That was my logic.
My ankles were swollen. My stomach ached, and the sweet, fresh-cut grass smell permeating from the alfalfa only accentuated the problem. At any other time in my life, I would have welcomed the scent, but not now.
My long red hair was pulled into a tight pony-tail. I loosened the band a bit, and pulled a few of the tighter strands out, in order to alleviate some of the pounding in my head. Along with the hair, I also released some of the familiar cherry-almond scent from my shampoo. I didn’t remember how long it had been since I’d last washed my hair, but, apparently, the sweet odor outlasted the cleanliness. Even that pleasant scent turned my stomach.
We hadn’t eaten all day. We’d left our last bag of supplies on top of our car when we’d taken off in a hurry the night before. It was my fault. I knew better than to pull out the entire bag just for one meal. But, I had thought we would have plenty of time to repack before we had to flee.
I had the old-fashioned rifle by my side. Of course, I didn’t know how to use it. The impromptu training I had gone through a couple of days before had done nothing for my confidence, let alone my skill. But, it made him feel better knowing I had a way to protect myself if we were ever separated like we were now.
I yawned, and I allowed myself to lean back a bit onto the itchy bale behind me. I was so tired. I never knew I could be so tired. I had only been able to steal maybe four hours of sleep since yesterday morning.
The stars in the clear Nevada sky glistened above my head. Somewhere in the distance, a coyote howled into the night.
I propped my growing ankles up on another bale, hoping they would eventually deflate. I was wearing my mom’s expensive hiking boots. Even if my own, cheaper shoes had still fit me comfortably, they would not have made it through this journey. As I sunk further into the hay, my back thanked me for the relief, and I edged slowly towards sleep.
A year ago, this would have been the last place I’d thought I would be. I was supposed to be getting ready to start college. I had been accepted to the University of Kansas, and I’d planned to have all of my supplies, including bedding and decorations for my dorm, ready by the end of August. School would be starting in the middle of September. I was going to follow in my sister’s footsteps by majoring in Political Science, and entering the pre-law program. There was no chance of that happening now.
Almost everything I had ever learned about the world was a lie. So many things I’d believed were good, now appeared to be nothing short of evil.
They had eradicated cancer, but at what price? I was still reeling from the information we’d recently heard. It had overturned everything I knew.
As part of our curriculum since Kindergarten, we’d learned all about how The Cure had come into being. While we were allowed some degree of laziness in subjects such as Math, and Language, US History was drilled into our brains from the time we could read.
Eliminating cancer topped the list of important accomplishments in World History as well. No event, anywhere, at any time, even came close to the importance of The Cure. Except for a few fluke cancer-cases here and there, no one dreaded the beast in quite the same way our ancestors had.
I thought of my little brother and sister. They were two of the lights of my life, as was my whole family. Now, I wondered if they were safe at all…