5 to 1

5 to 1

A Novel

Book - 2015
Average Rating:
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In a dystopian future where gender selection has led to [boys outnumbering girls] 5 to 1, marriage is arranged based on a series of tests. It's Sudasa's turn to pick a husband through this 'fair' method, but she's not sure she wants to be a part of it.
Publisher: New York : Alfred A. Knopf, [2015]
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9780385391542
0385391544
9780385391535
0385391536
9780385391559
Characteristics: 246 pages ; 22 cm
Alternative Title: Five to one : a novel

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t
TEENREVIEWBOARD
Jun 28, 2017

5 To 1 is a story about a girl named Sudassa who is forced into marriage as a result of her Indian culture. Women were considered as valuable as diamonds where she lived. The five to one ratio as the title is Five boys : one girl. A boy named Kiran is forced onto competition to win Sudassa’s hand in marriage. At the beginning the two completely loathed each other, but then they realized they were walking down the same path. This is a poetic styled book. It was so amazing and beautifully written. It truly showed everything the characters were thinking and feeling. I rate this book a five out of five; it definitely is a top read in my opinion. I would recommend this book to anyone who loves this genre.
- @SDJ of the Teen Review Board of the Hamilton Public Library

t
taylorwoods
Feb 22, 2017

In a world where women and young girls are prized and practically worshipped over men and young boys seems like the ultimate utopia for any feminist. Their gender gap is vast- 5 boys for every 1 girl- and how do we solve it? The Tests of course!

Where (in a weird, funky way) Divergent meets The Hunger Games (bear with me here), young boys compete in a series of tests to win over their young bride.

Enduring tests of skills and physicality, the winner gets to spend the rest of his life in luxury; pleasing his wife and helping bear daughters. If you lose, you will never marry and work the rest of your life (dire competition meets tests that determine destiny)
This small story really turned the tables on what it would be like for this- men no longer having a say in society and it fascinated the crap out of me.

I really did not expect much out of it- to be honest I was pulled in because it's primarily written in verse- and I am stunned and this book exceeded my expectations. I thought this book had many overlapping ideas from different already existing stories, however it is 99.9% original in my eyes. Very unique society with a very unique problem that does translate into the real world and it's issues.

JCLPeggyH Oct 19, 2015

The year is 2054 and India has a ratio of 5 boys to 1 girl. Girls have now become valuable assets. To combat the selling of daughters to the highest bidder, a group of women have founded a closed country they named Koyanagar. In Koyanagar, young men are chosen to compete for a chance to marry a girl. It is now Sudasa's turn to witness the testing of five young men and then choose one to become her future husband. Sudasa does not want a husband, she does not want to marry and bear children. She wants the opportunity to decide her own future, but that's not an option for her at this time.

Kiran is Contestant #5 in the lineup of young men competing for Sudasa's hand in marriage. He is there not by choice, but because to refuse is to die. He should be striving to win, because the options for the unchosen are few and usually result in a miserable existence ending much too soon. Life for the unchosen is so bad that many take their own lives shortly after the competition. Kiran, however, has secrets and plans - plans that do not include marrying some simpering, sheltered fool of a girl. He tries to purposely lose without looking like he's throwing it away, but the girl keeps trying to reward him. If she chooses him, it will be the end of everything he has been striving for.

This book is a refreshing break from teen love stories. There are no love triangles, in fact there is no love story here at all. It is a well done dystopian, also very refreshing. The premise is different and well executed. While the world building is not as extensive or detailed as it could be, it is absolutely sufficient for the story, which centers on the characters themselves. The alternating POV between Sudasa (written in verse) and Kiran (written in prose) is effective and very well done. An enjoyable and thought provoking read that is highly recommended! Ages 12 and up.

MariePat Oct 17, 2015

This dystopian type novel takes place in India in a world where there is an abundance of girls to boys. Males are forced to participate in tests to win the marriage hand of girls. Written in alternating voice of both boys and girls, this novel is similar to The Handmaid Tale. Very enjoyable and easy to read.

s
shayshortt
Oct 09, 2015

Ultimately, 5 to1 is a parable about why feminism has to mean equality of the sexes, not role reversal, and the world-building takes second place to setting up a situation that allows Bodger to explore this idea.

Read my full review here: http://shayshortt.com/2015/10/08/5-to-1/

b
BWilsoned
Aug 18, 2015

Bravo for Bodger for coming up with the turnabout that's bound to happen in places like India and China, where girls are undervalued to the point of infanticide. In Sudasa's world, women formed their own nation and walled themselves in (hmm, that doesn't seem too likely to last). With girls outnumbering boys 5 to 1, the ruling women now have the upper hand they've been wanting. Now boys have to compete in a series of tests to be chosen by a girl for a husband. Unfortunately, although not surprisingly, the founding/ruling women pushed men out of any but the most menial jobs and reduced their value to society, thus creating a constant source of discontent, much like the one they sought to fix. There are those who want to fix this system and there are those who want to escape the wall.
Fast-paced, enjoyable read with the different voices of Sudasa and Kirin as they tell their stories.

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shayshortt
Oct 09, 2015

Other: Abortion Sexism

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shayshortt
Oct 09, 2015

“Instead of fixing things/ of making changes/ of making improvements/ all they’ve done/ has been to break them/ in reverse.”

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