At first glance, it appears the novel is about a young girl attending boarding school, experiencing the trials and tribulations of growing up. But, as Kathy continues to tell her story, the reader soon realizes not all is as it seems.
Over the course of the novel, various clues reveal that these children will not have a regular adult life, but instead are created, cloned in fact, to exist only as organ donors; the boarding school, Hailsham, is basically a body farm. Yet, what makes this novel so unsettling is the nonchalant way Kathy tells the story, as if she has always accepted her fate and, in fact, believes that this is the natural order of things. This is made even stranger by the seemingly normal social relationships seen throughout the novel. These kids are experience life and love, just like any normal teenager; how can they be so blasé about their looming end?
That is only one of the many questions unresolved at the end of the novel, not to mention such themes as the moral and ethical use of clones for harvesting organs. Are clones less human than the people receiving the donations? Ahhh, this definitely left me deep in thought.
This book is an interesting, yet disturbing, look at what our own future may hold.