16 May 2015

Article #5 (Article #5 #1) by Kristen Simmons

Article #5 (Article #5 #1) by Kristen Simmons

Goodreads Synopsis
New York, Los Angeles, and Washington, D.C., have been abandoned.

The Bill of Rights has been revoked, and replaced with the Moral Statutes.

There 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.

Seventeen-year-old 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 circumstances allow.

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.

This whole novel felt like one giant travelogue; there was action and a plot, but there was too much in between traveling for me to thoroughly enjoy the book. There were a lot of throwaway characters that I was not crazy about and the whole first 15% of the novel in the prison with the evil headmistress type. It felt really cliche and then out of place considering the rest of the novel. I felt like it should have played a bigger role in the novel or else been taken out completely.

Ember described herself using a mirror too much for my liking and she was such an erratically changing character that it made my head spin. At the beginning of the book she is fighting with law enforcement and then blackmails a guard into helping her leave, but then she randomly freezes up and needs Chase to save the day for her at some points which was really conflicting for me. 

She was also extremely hostile to Chase who saved her life and was about preserving her life and sanity. She was supposedly "in love" with him, but that didn't seem to stop her from being so upset that he had "changed" and become a "different person". The novel didn't give a backstory or a reason as to why Ember would just have automatically assumed that Chase would be different and unloving of her just because he became part of the law enforcement. If anything, he probably would have been more changed after his life on his own when his uncle abandoned him than by going through basic training. 

But honestly the whole time all I could think was "here is another typical ya dystopian novel" and it lived up to that.

Overall: 3/5 stars because it was nothing special. I got the sequel for super cheap so I will continue it in hopes that there will be more back story and world building.

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