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Only Ever Yours

3.77  ·  Rating details ·  13,368 ratings  ·  2,233 reviews
In a world in which baby girls are no longer born naturally, women are bred in schools, trained in the arts of pleasing men until they are ready for the outside world. At graduation, the most highly rated girls become “companions”, permitted to live with their husbands and breed sons until they are no longer useful.

For the girls left behind, the future – as a concubine or
Kindle Edition, 400 pages
Published July 3rd 2014 by Quercus
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Monica If you're reading this book for the lesbians, there are no lesbians here, take your search elsewhere. The main character and her bff could have been a…moreIf you're reading this book for the lesbians, there are no lesbians here, take your search elsewhere. The main character and her bff could have been a really great couple but through poor writing their relationship is painfully brushed off so the protag can have a shitty relationship with a shitty man. 0/10 do not recommend.(less)

Community Reviews

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Average rating 3.77  · 
Rating details
 ·  13,368 ratings  ·  2,233 reviews

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Barry Pierce
The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood is a truly great work. Since its publication it has become a pillar of dystopian fict...

*knock on the door*

Oh, one sec.

"Yeah, come in!"

"Barry, I heard you speaking out loud whilst you were typing and you mentioned The Handmaid's Tale?"

"Yeah, I'm reviewing it right now"

"Uhm, Barry, you read and reviewed The Handmaid's Tale months ago..."

"No I didn't! I literally just finished reading it," I hold up the book. "Look!"

"Barry that says Only Ever Yours by Louise
C.G. Drews
I've put off reviewing this FOR A LONG TIME. It's too hard. I cannot...I don't even have properly formulated thoughts. I DON'T KNOW WHAT TO RATE IT. *frets and sweats* (I'm buddy reading this with my friend, also...when she finishes we can discuss and I will be so grateful, but in the meantime, if you've read it, comfort me. PLEASE. HELP.)

This book is basically a futuristic world were women are treated as...barbie dolls. They're only there for sex. They are nothing. An insult is, "Don't be acade
Oct 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Wow...where do I start?

With elements of The Stepford Wives, 1984, The Handmaid's Tale and Mean Girls' this book is ABSOLUTELY one of the more unusual, disturbing, and intriguing books that I have read in quite some time.

Apparently it was first published as a young adult book but is now being republished as an adult book.

This takes place in a "future" world where women (called eves) are created purely for male pleasure. They are no longer bred naturally but manufactured to become one of three t
☘Misericordia☘ ⚡ϟ⚡⛈⚡☁ ❇️❤❣
Apotheosis of neurosis wrapped up in dystopia narrowed down to a bitches' school. An extremely unusual take on popular topic demostrated in a set of a very persuasive world-building. The particularly unhappy end felt like an improvement on the messed-up world of this dystopian future.

There's lots of insight on bulimic/anorexic behaviour, drugs controversies, bullying, betrayal, self-image isses, digital nonsensicalities (do update your status online so world would know you're still alive!), one'
Joe Valdez
There's a good book buried deep in Only Ever Yours, a debut novel by Irish author Louise O'Neill published in 2014. Set in a Euro-Zone where ecological catastrophe has reset human civilization into a patriarchy, where women are genetically engineered and socially conditioned to serve men upon graduation from an all-girls finishing school at the age of 17, the book caters heavily to Young Adult readers. Where its target demographic might find this relatable, eerie and thought provoking, I found i ...more
Christine PNW
Sep 08, 2015 rated it it was ok
Unpopular Opinion Alert.

This book is very difficult to rate and review. It is not an enjoyable read - in some ways I intensely disliked it. But, at the same time that I was reading it and hating it, I was flicking screens as quickly as possible to get to the next page.

Where I run into trouble with this review is in that I must decide if I am going to treat it as a potentially important and serious treatment of misogyny and the oppression of women, through the medium of speculative fiction. Or,
Jan 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
initial reaction: what the fuck what the fuck what the fuck

I’ve never felt so physically sick while reading a book. This is a dark, hopeless story, that will make your insides churn and frighten you with its similarities (exaggerated, but present nonetheless) to our current society. You need courage to pick this up and a lot of resolve to keep going once the story gets started.

We’re presented with a dystopian futuristic society, in which women are no longer born, but created (scientifica
Stacey (prettybooks)
I purchased Only Ever Yours after it won the YA Book Prize. It was one of the few books on the shortlist that I didn't already own or hadn't read, but it was one everyone was talking about.

Louise O'Neill describes Only Ever Yours as The Handmaid’s Tale meets Mean Girls. It is startlingly, painfully real. I've read a lot of young adult dystopian fiction and I've been reluctant to think of Only Ever Yours as 'dystopian' – it's more 'speculative'. Even though our society doesn't mirror freida and i
Shannon (It Starts At Midnight)
I have a lot of feelings about this book. Just so many. Here's the general theme of them though: Read. This. Book. Seriously, I am not saying that because it was fun and enjoyable, because it simply is not. It is hell on paper. Exquisitely written, horrifyingly realistic hell on paper. Basically, I am just going to list why I absolutely implore you to read this book, okay? Great.

This book is way, way too close to how our society actually thinks/feels. frieda is terrified of gaining an ounce.
April (Aprilius Maximus)
Feb 27, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019
This . . . this is a really hard book to rate because NONE OF IT is enjoyable. at all. but it's really thought provoking and anger inducing and well written, so?????? ...more
Kirsty-Marie Jones
Jun 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing

Once upon a time, there was a happy book. This is not one of them. Once upon a time, there was a clever book. This is one of them. It's funny because of course before you go into a book you never know what to expect, especially with synopsis's lately that sound amazing but turn out disappointing, again, this is not that book.

The world in Only Ever Yours is based upon Men's idealism of women, and what a dark world that is. Women are no longer made, they are genetically made and modified and are
Jesse Baker
Jul 24, 2014 rated it it was ok
Am I the only person who was disappointed by this book? I was entertained enough to keep reading it because I had heard the ending was shocking, however I was underwhelmed. This book was very repetitive, and there was nothing underneath the surface.
Reading Corner
Oct 26, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
So I was thinking more about this book and I've decided to drop it to 4.5 stars due to the ending.

This book is just wow, it is soooo good and incredibly engrossing,I couldn't wait to get back to reading this one every time I put it down.It completely surpassed my expectations and has weaved it's way into my highly recommend.The story is completely enthralling, it reels you in from the start as the dytsopian world that Louise'Neill creates is just so interesting.Although,the ending is slightly an
Ellen Gail
Nov 07, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Ellen Gail by: Buzzfeed, Jeanette Winterson
2.5 stars.

"I am a good girl. I am pretty. I am always happy-go-lucky."

Sigh. I was so excited for this. A YA feminist dystopia given a blurb of approval by Jeanette Winterson, she of The Passion, which was dreamy and whimsical and everything I wanted Only Ever Yours to be. In a world full of genetically engineered women, aka eves, girls are trained from age four to please men. The story follows freida (non capitalized, like all eves names) who is in her last year of school. Her whole life has bee
What would you do if you failed to produce sons? Throw myself on the pyre before Termination Date so my husband can marry someone better. What would you do if a man asked you for sex when you where feeling unwell? Always be willing. What would you do if a man asked you to perform a sexual act you felt uncomfortable with? Always be willing.

I want to forget I ever read this book. On a scale of zero to 'Leonardo Dicaprio asking for a lobotomy in Shutter Island', I am Leo. Running to the lightho
3.5 rounded up.

I enjoyed this more than I probably should have, but I’ve missed a good bit of YA dystopian fiction. This reads very well, it’s easy to follow and the plot itself doesn’t drag at all. I felt completely wrapped up in frieda’s world and found it interesting and thought provoking. Isobel in particular, with her hidden secrets and privileges, was intriguing and I felt for her while watching this decent into self destruction. I found frieda naive in nature. She’s described as ‘eager t
Lala BooksandLala
Rating Only Ever Yours is difficult. This book is not designed to be enjoyed, but rather demands to be felt. It has a powerful message, and I felt the way the book intended, however I still struggle with a rating because my enjoyment level was so low. But was my enjoyment level low because of the subject matter, or due to something the book was lacking? I'm not sure myself. ...more
Liz Barnsley
Jul 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing
So I read the final page of “Only Ever Yours” and was incoherent for about half an hour. Literally. Thats how good it was. Unbelievably believable, , compelling, utterly riveting and scary as hell when you think how much of this imaginary world could so easily be our reality given a simple twist of history or fate, I was completely undone by the whole reading experience.

We follow along mostly with frieda – she’s an “Eve”, a female bred for the pleasure or service of men. She is at “school” learn
Even after finishing it, I still have so many conflicting thoughts about this book. The story definitely kept me interested, but in the end I wished it had been more than it was.
Maybe I'll be able to form some coherent thoughts about this later, but for now I'm going to give it a 3, maybe even a 3.5 star rating.
(I also feel like reading a super fluffy, happy contemporary now, because this was pretty depressing.)
Charley Cook
Jul 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
Probably the most disturbing dystopia-esque book I've ever read because it's so....real...damn
Full review to come.
Cora Tea Party Princess
5 Words: Beauty, power, property, friendship, freedom.

YA Shot read-a-long March 2016

I really enjoyed this book, if that's even the right word, but by the end I felt kind of deflated. I felt that, just like the characters, all hope was gone, lost.

This is a good book, but it's also utterly horrible.

It takes the very worst aspects of human nature and exaggerates them and makes everything HORRIBLE, but you can't stop reading because it's so well written and right until the end you have this tiny shr
Elaine Mullane || At Home in Books
I first read Only Ever Yours when it was released in 2014. To this day, it is still my favourite work of YA dystopian fiction.

In a world where girls are created and bred for the pleasure of men, the only important thing for the eves to do is be beautiful. frieda is in her final year of school and is being prepped to be handed off to a sixteen-year-old male Inheritant and live a life based purely out of service: to be willing and to reproduce. If she isn't good enough to be chosen, she will becom
Oct 01, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm speechless. I don't even know how to rate this. Holy shit. This creeped the shit outta me.


UPDATE: actual review.

I couldn't form words about this book for several days. Even now I know this review will be shorter than usual, just because I really don't know what to say. It's just scary.

The book is set in a dystopian world were women are designed and created to be perfect, for men.
Our protagonist is in the School that's supposed to prepare them
Oct 25, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: ya
This book appears to contain some interesting themes and messages, however the characters were 2-dimensional, plain stupid or both. frieda won the worst character category: her integrity and self-confidence are the saddest of any character I have ever read about. She appears to be infatuated with Darwin, her only hope at becoming a companion yet she has no qualms spilling his secrets to megan, who she constantly tries to please, acting little more than a leech. Her relationship with isabel isn't ...more
Apr 05, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
O'Neill delivers a chilling, modern-day rendition of Brave New World. In true Huxley style, she presents a world where we are controlled by sex, by the lure of the American Dream twisted in the most macabre fashion into a virtual horror show. Voices whisper as the 'eves' sleep, urging them to be perfect, to be thin, to submit to the will of their buyers, their owners - men.

But what is truly frightening about this book is it's honestly, it's refusal to hide behind vagueness when presenting a wor
Feb 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
BRUTAL HORRIFYING EYE OPENING are only a few words I have for this book this book will shock you.
This book is really not what I thought it would be, it was truly terrifying as I could see parts, of this book happening in our society today. That's why it was so scary for me as it's not just make believe all of us can talk about these issues we, have in our society.
This book starts of with Frieda our main character she is an eve along with her best friend isabelle.Women are not born anymore they a
Jun 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I'm actually dehydrated from crying.
This book tore my soul and heart into confetti.
It was perfect but it ruined me.

This book demands to be read, felt and understood. It is not a nice book. Or a fun book. With each chapter you're drawn further into this hellish reality, and you realise that our society is fucked. Totally, totally fucked. I feel like I never want anyone to look at me ever again, I want to shout to the world that my body is mine.
I can't fathom my thoughts into words but I am compl
May 12, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed, dystopian
For now they are just girls who are making the wrong choices. They’re ‘whores’. But what if they don’t realize that they’re making the wrong choices?

In this world, girls are no longer born; known as eves they are created to be perfect but there is always room for Improvement. The narrator, freida, sees it in her skin, she sees it in her weight, in the bags under her eyes. When she looks at her best friend isabel putting on weight, all she can think is "Fat Girls must be made obsolete."

This b
Nov 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing
In the future – after the inevitable calamity – women are no longer born, they are bred. Bred to be aesthetically pleasing to the male gaze and as compliant as possible. They are raised together in a school, learning to be approved versions of the ‘perfect’ woman, and when they turn seventeen, they are chosen to be either companions (wives), concubines or chastities (essentially nuns who will raise the next generation of perfect girls). There is no free will, the girls exist entirely to please m ...more
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Louise O' Neill is from Clonakilty, in west Cork. After graduating with a BA in English Studies at Trinity College Dublin, she went on to complete a post-grad in Fashion Buying at DIT. Having spent a year in New York working for Kate Lanphear, the senior Style Director of ELLE magazine, she returned home to Ireland to write her first novel.
She went from hanging out on set with A-list celebrities t

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