New York, Los Angeles, and Washington, D.C., have been abandoned.
The Bill of Rights has been revoked, and replaced with the Moral Statutes.
are no more police—instead, there are soldiers. There are no more fines
for bad behavior—instead, there are arrests, trials, and maybe worse.
People who get arrested usually don't come back.
Ember Miller is old enough to remember that things weren’t always this
way. Living with her rebellious single mother, it’s hard for her to
forget that people weren’t always arrested for reading the wrong books
or staying out after dark. It’s hard to forget that life in the United
States used to be different.
Ember has perfected the art of
keeping a low profile. She knows how to get the things she needs, like
food stamps and hand-me-down clothes, and how to pass the random home
inspections by the military. Her life is as close to peaceful as
That is, until her mother is arrested for
noncompliance with Article 5 of the Moral Statutes. And one of the
arresting officers is none other than Chase Jennings…the only boy Ember
has ever loved."
While this was not the most unique dystopian/ post-apocalyptic book that I have ever read (I have read a ridiculous number of dystopian/ post-apocalyptic books as of late and I cannot help but compare them), I still very much enjoyed it. I think that where at times the world-building of the book was lacking, the extremely well-developed and complex characters more than made up for it.
I must admit that there were times that I found myself growing increasingly frustrated with Ember, the main female character. I thought that she often did things with little to no thought (for instance, thinking that running away from Chase would be a good idea- it wasn't- and her being so obtuse when it came Chase's real intentions for rescuing her/ his feelings for her), however I very much enjoyed the fact that she actually grew and matured throughout the novel- mentally, physically, and emotionally (seriously, by the end of this book she could give Tris from Veronica Roth's "Divergent" or Juliette from Tahereh Mafi's "Shatter Me" a run for their money).
While Chase, the main male lead, is by far one of the best book boys I have had the pleasure of reading in quite some time- while at times he was quite prickly and stoic, he always had the best intentions at heart. And when he did show his soft side? Well, he is a force to be reckoned with (he hands down gets my swoon-worthy stamp of approval).
All in all, despite a few minor complaints I think that this is an amazing debut from author Kristen Simmons. I cannot wait to see what she has in store for us in the next installment of this series- here's hoping that it is just as fast-paced, engaging, and as page-turning as this book was!
I received this book from the publisher to read and honestly review. I was not compensated in any way for said review.