Breeder by Cara Bristol
High Commander Dak is the ruling Alpha of planet Parseon. He purchases Omra as a breeder slave because in this world, females are mainly used to bear children. He wants a son and thinks after that duty is done, he will have no other need for her. By law, he is to use Omra to have his child and not for any sexual gratification.
Omra was raised knowing that one day she would be a breeder slave and her sire protected her virginity to increase her value. Her hope was that the male that chose her would not abuse her. When Dak purchased her, she was optimistic because he seemed like a strict but reasonable person.
The Parseon culture judges harshly anyone who takes pleasure carnal activity or attempts to treat females with more regard than dictated. As Dak begins to question the strict cultural norms, it seems that nefarious forces will try to exploit any perceived weakness to cause his downfall.
I voluntarily read an advanced reader’s copy of this book.
I was hesitant about reading this book because I was worried that I would not like it. Mainly, because it is out of the range of what I would usually read. The author stated it was a dark romance and while I like suspense, I tend to stay away from the dark romance because it usually deals with issues that I do not find entertaining or like to read about in romance.
Saying all that to say, I love this book.
Yes it is dark. The world in which the author has created is a misogynistic place in the extreme. There is so much abuse towards females in general because it seems that the males hate that they need females to procreate.
Males in this world are divided into two categories: alphas and betas. The alphas run things. They are the ones that own property and are in charge. The betas are in a submissive position to the alpha. They live together after an “anointing” with the alpha as the breadwinner and the beta takes care of the domestic duties. The females are relegated to the role of breeder slaves and treated in some cases worse than a farm animal.
Why did I love this book?
One, I loved the world building. This world was so complex that I could not even think of another book that I’ve read to compare it to. As I was reading, I was on the edge of my seat trying to imagine how Dak and Omra would be able to have a relationship without him losing his position. Then I questioned what it would mean for him to lose his position. Plus the risk of the villain winning had me holding my breath because I could not guess how it was going to end.
Two, I appreciated the changes that Dak made to treat the Omra as more of an equal than society deemed her to be. While he was very strict at times, he was looking at the bigger picture and implications of his actions at all times. In that sense, he tried to be a decent alpha and protector.
Three, the ending of the book left me with hope that even though it is a dark, depressing society for women in general, the inklings of compassion indicate that change will come in time. Dak evolves in the book because he has a modicum of compassion and tenderness in his heart.