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Anisim Sokolov
Anisim Sokolov

The Declaration by Gemma Malley: How to Download the Ebook for Free

The Declaration by Gemma Malley: A Dystopian Novel for Young Adults

If you are looking for a thrilling, passionate and beautifully written dystopian novel that will make you question your own world and values, you might want to check out The Declaration by Gemma Malley. This novel tells the story of a young woman named Anna who lives in a bleak future where people can live forever but children are forbidden. She escapes from a harsh institution where she was raised as a Surplus with the help of a mysterious boy named Peter who claims to know her parents. Together they embark on a dangerous journey to find their freedom and their identity in a society that wants them dead.

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The Declaration is Gemma Malley's first novel for a teenage audience. She studied Philosophy at Reading University before working as a journalist and a civil servant. She published her novel in 2007 and it was followed by two sequels: The Resistance (2008) and The Legacy (2010). The novel explores various themes such as human nature, freedom, choice, love, morality, ageism, environmentalism, etc. It also critiques the society and the system of longevity that allows people to live forever by taking drugs but at the cost of banning reproduction.

The Setting and the Plot

The novel is set in England in 2140. The world is overpopulated and polluted due to people living indefinitely by taking Longevity drugs. To control the population growth, people have to sign a Declaration that states they will not have children. Those who break this rule are called Illegal and their children are called Surplus. Surplus children are taken away from their parents and sent to institutions where they are taught to be useful servants for Legals.

The protagonist of the novel is Anna Covey, a 15-year-old girl who lives in Grange Hall, one of these institutions. She has been told that she is a mistake and a burden to society. She has been brainwashed by Mrs. Pincent, the cruel matron of Grange Hall, to believe that she has no right to exist and that she must atone for her parents' sins by working hard and obeying the rules. She has no hope or dreams for the future, until one day a new boy arrives at Grange Hall. His name is Peter and he is different from the other Surplus. He is confident, rebellious and curious. He tells Anna that he knows her parents and that they are still alive and looking for her. He also tells her that there is a world outside Grange Hall where children are free and happy. He convinces Anna to escape with him and find her parents.

However, their escape is not easy. They have to face many dangers and obstacles along the way, such as Catchers who hunt down Surplus, Legals who despise them, and Mrs. Pincent who has a personal vendetta against them. They also have to deal with their own doubts and fears, as well as their growing feelings for each other. They discover secrets and truths about themselves, their parents, and the society they live in. They also learn that there is a resistance movement against the longevity system and that they have a role to play in it.

The Characters and their Relationships

One of the strengths of the novel is the characterization and the development of the main characters. Anna is a complex and realistic heroine who undergoes a significant transformation throughout the story. She starts as a timid, obedient and brainwashed girl who believes everything she has been told by Mrs. Pincent. She gradually becomes a brave, independent and rebellious young woman who questions the world she lives in and fights for her freedom and identity. She also learns to love herself and others, especially Peter.

Peter is a charismatic and mysterious hero who acts as a catalyst for Anna's change. He is also a complex and flawed character who has his own secrets and struggles. He is determined, courageous and loyal, but he is also impulsive, reckless and sometimes selfish. He loves Anna deeply but he also has his own agenda and mission. He challenges Anna to think for herself and to follow her heart, but he also puts her in danger and sometimes lies to her.

Anna and Peter have a strong and compelling relationship that evolves from friendship to romance. They have a lot in common but they also have differences that create conflict and tension. They support each other but they also challenge each other. They trust each other but they also betray each other. They are both Surplus but they have different backgrounds and experiences that shape their views and values.

The novel also features many secondary characters who have their own personalities and roles in the story. Some of them are allies or friends of Anna and Peter, such as Sheila, Julia, Tania, Stephen, etc. Some of them are enemies or foes of Anna and Peter, such as Mrs. Pincent, Roper, Sargent Sharpe, etc. Some of them are ambiguous or complex characters who have mixed motives or feelings towards Anna and Peter, such as Mr. Pincent, Larson, etc.

The Themes and the Messages

The novel explores many themes that are relevant to young adults and to society in general. Some of these themes are:

  • Human nature: The novel asks what makes us human and what distinguishes us from animals or machines. It also examines the dark side of human nature, such as greed, selfishness, violence, etc.

  • Freedom: The novel shows the importance of freedom and the consequences of losing it or giving it up. It also shows the different forms of freedom, such as physical freedom, mental freedom, emotional freedom, etc.

  • Choice: The novel emphasizes the power of choice and the responsibility that comes with it. It also shows the different types of choices, such as moral choices, personal choices, social choices, etc.

  • Love: The novel celebrates the value of love and the different kinds of love, such as romantic love, parental love, friendship love, etc. It also shows the challenges and sacrifices that love entails.

  • Morality: The novel raises moral dilemmas and questions that have no easy answers. It also shows the different sources of morality, such as religion, law, conscience, etc.

  • Ageism: The novel criticizes the discrimination and oppression of young people by older people who have more power and resources. It also shows the effects of ageism on both groups.

  • Environmentalism: The novel warns about the environmental degradation caused by human overpopulation and overconsumption. It also shows the need for sustainability and balance between humans and nature.

The novel conveys various messages that are intended to make readers think critically about their own world and values. Some of these messages are:

  • We should respect life in all its forms and stages.

  • We should cherish our freedom and use it wisely.

  • We should make our own choices and accept their consequences.

  • We should love ourselves and others unconditionally.

  • We should act morally and ethically according to our conscience.

  • We should challenge the status quo and resist injustice.

  • We should protect the environment and respect nature.

The Style and the Language

The novel is written in a simple and clear language that is easy to understand and follow. The author uses different narrative techniques to create variety and interest in the story. Some of these techniques are:

  • Journal entries: The novel begins and ends with Anna's journal entries that reveal her thoughts and feelings. They also show her progress and development as a character.

  • Flashbacks: The novel uses flashbacks to show the past events that shaped the characters and the world. They also create suspense and mystery by revealing information gradually.

  • Dialogue: The novel uses dialogue to show the interactions and relationships between the characters. They also reveal their personalities, emotions, motives, etc.

The author also uses various literary devices to enhance the meaning and tone of the story. Some of these devices are:

  • Figurative language: The author uses metaphors, similes, personification, etc. to create vivid images and comparisons in the reader's mind. For example, Anna describes Grange Hall as "a prison" and Mrs. Pincent as "a snake".

  • Imagery: The author uses sensory details to describe the settings and the scenes in the story. For example, Anna describes the smell of Grange Hall as "a mixture of bleach, cabbage and sweat".

  • Symbolism: The author uses objects, colors, names, etc. to represent abstract ideas or concepts in the story. For example, the Declaration symbolizes the longevity system and its oppression, while Peter's necklace symbolizes his connection to his parents and his identity.

The Reception and the Impact

The novel received positive reviews from critics and readers when it was first published and now. It was praised for its originality, creativity, realism, emotion, etc. It was also compared to other famous dystopian novels such as The Giver by Lois Lowry or The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins.

The novel also received several awards and nominations for its quality and popularity. Some of these awards are:

  • The Waterstones Children's Book Prize (2008)

  • The Angus Book Award (2008)

  • The Lancashire Book of the Year Award (2008)

  • The Leeds Book Award (2009)

  • The North East Teenage Book Award (2009)

The novel also influenced other works of dystopian fiction or inspired social movements or debates. Some of these works or movements are:

  • The Unwanteds by Lisa McMann: A series of novels that follows a group of children who are sent to a death camp for being creative in a world where creativity is illegal.

  • Delirium by Lauren Oliver: A novel that depicts a world where love is considered a disease and people are cured of it at the age of 18.

  • Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro: A novel that portrays a dystopian society where human clones are raised for organ donation.

  • Youth Strike 4 Climate: A global movement of students who protest against climate change and demand action from governments.

  • Pro-Choice Movement: A movement that advocates for women's right to choose whether or not to have an abortion.


In conclusion, The Declaration by Gemma Malley is a dystopian novel for young adults that tells the story of Anna and Peter who escape from a world where people can live forever but children are illegal. The novel explores various themes such as human nature, freedom, choice, love, morality, ageism, environmentalism, etc. It also critiques the society and the system of longevity that oppresses young people and destroys nature. The novel is written in a simple and clear language that uses different narrative techniques and literary devices to create variety and interest in the story. The novel received positive reviews and awards from critics and readers, and influenced other works and movements in the genre and in the society.

I personally enjoyed reading this novel and I would recommend it to anyone who likes dystopian fiction or who wants to think critically about their own world and values. I think this novel is relevant and important for young adults who are facing many challenges and choices in their lives. I also think this novel is inspiring and hopeful for young adults who want to make a difference in their world and fight for their freedom and identity.

To end this article, I would like to quote a sentence from the novel that I think summarizes its message and its spirit: "We are not surplus. We are not mistakes. We are alive, and we have a right to be."


Here are some frequently asked questions about the novel:

  • Q: Is The Declaration a standalone novel or part of a series?

  • A: The Declaration is the first novel in a trilogy that includes The Resistance and The Legacy.

  • Q: How old are Anna and Peter in the novel?

  • A: Anna is 15 years old and Peter is 16 years old.

  • Q: What is the name of the drug that allows people to live forever?

  • A: The drug is called Longevity.

  • Q: What is the name of the resistance movement against the longevity system?

  • A: The movement is called The Underground.

  • Q: What is the name of Anna's parents?

  • A: Anna's parents are Richard and Sarah Covey.



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