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3.49  ·  Rating details ·  2,748 ratings  ·  398 reviews
A young girl thirsts for love and freedom, but at what cost?

Ruby dreams of escaping the Congregation. Escape from slaver Darwin West and his cruel Overseers. Escape from the backbreaking work of gathering Water. Escape from living as if it is still 1812, the year they were all enslaved.

When Ruby meets Ford—an irresistible, kind, forbidden new Overseer—she longs to run aw
Hardcover, 400 pages
Published January 25th 2011 by EgmontUSA
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Popular Answered Questions
Leanne Her blood (& her fathers before her) has healing properties and some sort of immortality/anti aging properties. (If I'm remember correctly)
Sylvia I'm answering myself after reading the book. Maybe it'll help somebody else.
Both boks have the simmilar atmosphere, but you must survive the…more
I'm answering myself after reading the book. Maybe it'll help somebody else.
Both boks have the simmilar atmosphere, but you must survive the first 30% of "Drought" which is really annoying. Still worth it. (less)
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Average rating 3.49  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,748 ratings  ·  398 reviews

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K. O'Bibliophile
I'm just going to explain the entire thing, because the book's not worth reading.

Ruby longs to escape from the only life she knows, as part of the Congregation ruled by a terrible Overseer who demands the special Water they collect that provides immortality. But only a select few know that it's Ruby's blood that makes the Water special. Also she's 200 years old, falls in love, and her father may be Jesus.

This is your typical teenage girl-in-repressive-society-starts-think
Dec 19, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: ya-lit, 2011, dystopian
Ruby is a teenager, but one who has been growing up for a long time. A very long time. She, her mother, and their fellow "Congregants" are prisoners on a mountain, forced every day to use cups and spoons to collect water and dew drops from the undersides of plants in the forest. They are rarely fed, and if they don't meet their daily quota, the beatings are usually brutal and severe, and almost exclusively focused on Ruby's mother. But that is OK, because every night, Ruby treats her with some o ...more
Argh. Just. Argh to this entire book. It has a somewhat (sorta, anyway) interesting concept, but the execution falls flat on its face, and I pretty much want to punt every single character in this book somewhere far away from me.

Basically the story is this: The main character, Ruby, is part of this cult-like group (her Congregation) that is being held prisoner (basically slaves) for Darwin and his group of Overseers. The Congregation goes out every day to collect water from leaves/plants/etc; basic
A lot of the negative reviews on here seem to stem from the readers having been mislead that this is a dystopian novel. It is not, and was not intended to be. Instead it's an interesting play on the vampire/paranormal romance genre mixed with a realistic cult story. The book raises a lot of questions: What is faith? Are our motivations for what we do noble or selfish, and how can we be sure? What is love, and what happens when it is withheld, taken for granted, or abused?

Unlike a lot
Apr 06, 2011 rated it it was ok
Drought is not one of the best books that I have read lately. There were some serious crises in world-building, character development and plotting. I was so disappointed. :(
Ruby is an engaging and likable protagonist. She does seem to know the difference between right and wrong, and she rebels against this society that she is a part of. When I first picked this book up, I thought it was going to be a dystopian - not the case - and was kind of confused as to why the entire situation was happenin
Feb 15, 2011 rated it liked it
This one was a hard one to rate for me. It almost got two stars just for the way it ended. it had a fairly interesting premise and started out ok, it just left me unfulfilled as a reader. it could have been sooooo much better, I just felt it was written poorly overall and the author jumped around, had things not quite believable, and way way too many questions left unanswered.

Don't read ahead if you don't want any spoilers, and I seem to have more to say about a book that I didn't li
Jul 01, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
From Book Brats!

The Village meets slavery meets a cult? Trust me, it sounds a LOT more interesting than it ends up being.

As you might have guessed, I was rather interested in this book based on the plot alone. Yes, it has bad reviews on Amazon and Goodreads, but it does not live up to the promise the plot gives. In fact, it falls flat thanks to 1.) stupid characters, 2.) implausible plot developments, and 3.) an ending that wrapped up 400 pages worth of action in 10 minutes.
Antara Verma
Jul 26, 2012 rated it really liked it
Ok firstly, I am VERY surprised at the bad reviews this book's gotten, I personally thought it would be a huge hit.

So I'm just going to go ahead and voice my opinion.
I honestly believe, this is one of the best young adult novels I have read. I am not one who cries during books, or laughs even. I manage to maintain a straightforward poker face whether I am reading a book authored by Khaled Hosseini or Louise Rennison. Drought however, seemed to bring out the complete emotion pac
Jul 18, 2011 rated it really liked it
I really liked this book but it could have been SO MUCH better!!! Okay, there are some major questions that are left unanswered. HUGE ones.
First one: What the heck is she?
Second one: What the hell happened to Otto?
Third: Who is the Vistor?
Fourth: What happens to the water that is collected?
Another problem I had was that Ford did not find out the truth about her age for one thing! Nor did he believe her about her blood. And don't get me started on her Mother. What a bitch! Pis
Holly Drawdy
Aug 07, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I couldn't put it down but many things were left unexplained....her blood, Otto, What Old Testament they read from, how the village was never questioned ...
Jan 19, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: ya
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Ellz Readz
Jan 29, 2011 rated it liked it
My thoughts...Drought, the second book by author Pam Bachorz is not a happy go lucky story. It is dark and twisted. It left me cringing and covering my eyes with despair, yet I could not stop reading.

The story takes place in modern times, though it is hard to tell. The main characters, or Congregation, live under the control of a tyrant named Darwin West. This is probably one of the scariest villains I have read in YA literature. The man is evil. Ruby, the heroine, and other members of the con
Nov 17, 2010 rated it it was ok
Recommended to Jennifer by:
Shelves: sci-fi-dystopia
Drought is a vaguely dystopian novel about a group of people held hostage away from civilization for 200 years. Tortured and worked to death (if not for the Water they collect), The Congregation patiently waits for their savior Otto. Ruby, Otto's daughter, is placed in the impossible position of having to chose between love and freedom or loyalty to those that depend on her.

Ruby's romance story line is the one very real feeling aspect of Drought. She and Ford come together in a way t
Amanda Kimball
Dec 01, 2012 rated it it was ok
I kept waiting and waiting for Ruby to take a stand...and it never came. I feel as though I wasted a whole afternoon on something that could've been great but just never got there. The whole pseudo-religion/cult thing just didn't work for me with the way the plot was laid out. I get that Otto is never coming back, but so much else is left unanswered.
There were no descriptions as to why/how the townspeople knew they had special "Water" when they were first enslaved and that really bothered
Jan 04, 2011 rated it did not like it
Drought follows Ruby, a girl with blood that heals. Ruby is the Daughter of Otto, her cult's leader who has left his flock. The congregation willingly allows themselves to be enslaved and beaten as they gather Water (water pulled off plants with a Drop of Ruby's blood which makes it magical so they can live almost forever). The group takes a drop of Water as communion and wait for Otto's return.

I was excited by the initial premise of this book but after a hundred pages of rolling my
Pavarti Tyler
Oct 28, 2013 rated it liked it
Great book, totally original premise and something I've never encountered before. Unfortunately, the litany of unanswered questions ruined it for me. I just don't find that to be a satisfying read. I could list it out, but I don't want to spoil anything. It's well written, a good pace, a completely new premise and worth reading. I did note a few places where the wrong name was used (Darwin instead of Otto!!) which was very confusing. I got this copy from my local library.
Sep 08, 2015 rated it did not like it
Probably one of the worst books I have ever read. The plot, characters, background, and everything was just terribly written. I do not recommend this book.
Jan 11, 2019 added it
A small village of people were enslaved and now have to gather up water from the forest just to eat and survive. When the tanks are not filled with enough water the main character Ruby will spill her special blood into them so that the people will not get a beating. The man in charge Darwin West is madly in love with Ruby's mother but she refuses to marry him. When a new overseer arrives Ruby slowly starts falling for him as he does for her. They want to be together in a normal life but they kno ...more
Katherine Araujo
Dec 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This 17 year old girl named Ruby is the daughter of Otto, a god. Ruby and her mother are part of the Congregation, they are slaves for a man named Darwin West. They collect water that heals people,but ruby’s blood is the one that does that, the water they collect is just water nothing special. One day Ruby meets a 18 year old boy and they fall in love with each other, but they can't be with each other because one is a slave and one is the guard. Ruby has to choose between her family or her new l ...more
Oct 27, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arcs-i-own
4.5 stars see full review at

Drought describes a group of congregants led by Sula Prosser, a woman raised by a trapper father and no mother. Soon after Sula falls in love with Darwin West and becomes engaged to him near the year 1820, her father returns home from the woods with a man named Otto following him. Sula's love for Darwin dies when she meets the new stranger whose blood has the power to heal and prolong life. But Otto disappears, leaving nothing more than a box behind and the
Jen  Bigheart
Dec 13, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: signed
You would think that Ruby lives during the 1800s by the way she is treated, but DROUGHT is set in modern day America. Ruby and the rest of the Congregation are enslaved to man named Darwin West, and only live to do one thing, gather water. They scrape the water drops off every blade of grass and dewy leaf using only a spoon. Whether they have to fill a whole cup or two, this is the only life they know, day in and day out. Darwin makes their existence nearly intolerable. He is a tyrant, a brute, ...more
Mundie Moms & Mundie Kids
2.5 stars

I'll admit that I was really drawn to Drought because of it's captivating cover, the setting and by the author. Pam's writing is one that makes you think, and believe me, I thought a lot while reading Drought. This book really threw me for a surprise, but not in the way I was expecting. From the moment the story starts I felt like I was thrown into the middle of the woods where the story is set, in complete isolation. Like Ruby, I have no idea what year it is or what's going
Dec 29, 2012 rated it liked it
Drought is a Science-Fiction type book in which the main character Ruby has to help her colony. What's so weird about this? Ruby is 200 years old and has the body and attitude of a 17 year old girl, her father Otto left the community many years before, they are a special community because the only reason the people is living for so long is because Ruby and Otto have special Blood that they put into the peoples Water to help heal any injury no matter how big or small and keeps them from getting s ...more
Jun 12, 2010 rated it really liked it
Why I read this: I really enjoyed Candor when I read it and had to check out Pam's latest novel, especially with the dystopian element.

Plot: I thought this was quite a unique book. It's about an almost cult-like community that worships this man named Otto, who happens to be the father of Ruby. He abandoned them to the cruelty of Darwin West, who uses them to harvest Water, which helps to cure wounds and make people live longer. That being said, it was hard to wrap my head around what
Feb 23, 2011 rated it it was ok
Drought has been on the edges of my reading radar for a while. For probably three or four months before its release, I had it on my to read list because I was interested in what appeared to be a fascinating dystopian world with a clear water conservation/environmentalism message. When January rolled around and I couldn't find the book (and I saw its lukewarm reviews) I decided to let it drop off my to read list and focus on other things. When "Dystopian February" rolled around, and drought was f ...more
Mar 24, 2011 rated it liked it
Ruby dreams of escaping the Congregation, the slaver, Darwin West and his cruel overseers, and the killing work of gathering Water. Water is what keeps the congregants alive for hundreds of years. It has incredible healing properties. Unfortunately, it is not the water, scraped from leaves and plants with spoons and collected cup by cup by the slaves, that keeps everyone alive, but the secret ingredient that is added to the water – drops of Ruby’s blood. Nobody but the congregants’ elders know t ...more
Dec 27, 2010 rated it liked it
Ruby and her mother, along with some people from their village, are in the Congregation. A group of Otto (their version of a Messiah) worshipers who live out in the woods under the control of Darwin West, who forces them to harvest "special" water that has age defying and healing properties so that he can make a handsome profit. Little does he know that the water is only special because Ruby's (and Otto's) blood is special. When Darwin West hires a new enforcer that needs the money
Hafsah Faizal
Oct 27, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Review on blog

Drought is one of the first stand-alone novels I've read in a long time. At least, it seems to be a stand-alone novel for now. I know I say this with quite a lot of books, but I loved it. From start to finish, it was a beautiful, heartfelt ride. I felt I could connect with Ruby, the protagonist, through out most of the events. Even the bad guy - Darwin West - had cruelty that could be imagined. It's not the type that's impossible in this world, if you get my meaning.
Abi L.
Nov 15, 2013 rated it really liked it
Ruby, a teenage girl, has the power to keep a whole enslaved Congregation alive. She has sacred blood that gives water healing qualities, and the community relies on her. Meeting Ford, a kind Overseer, Ruby’s feelings grow for him, and they realize that escape from Darwin West’s cruel world is possible. As Ruby struggles to keep the Congregation and herself alive, she has to decide if she is more loyal to them, with their faithful ways, or herself.
This book made me connect to “The Hunger
Apr 14, 2014 rated it it was ok
Ruby and her mother with a congregation of people live in the woods and are slaves to Darwin West. They harvest water every day from the dew off plants with a pewter cup and spoon. They are watched by Overseerers and beat regularly if they don't produce the days quota. Every year a visitor comes and takes the water. The only reason the water is of any value is because every night Ruby cuts herself and lets her blood drop into the barrel. Her blood heals and allows the congregation to live foreve ...more
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Pam Bachorz grew up in a small town in the Adirondack foothills, where she participated in every possible performance group and assiduously avoided any threat of athletic activity, unless it involved wearing sequined headpieces and treading water. With a little persuasion she will belt out tunes from "The Music Man" and "The Fantasticks", but she knows better than to play cello in public anymore. ...more
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“I'm done waiting for someone, even my father, to save me. Today I'm the one who will be doing the saving.” 5 likes
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