Sunday, September 29, 2013

Review: Frozen - Melissa de la Cruz and Michael Johnston.

Melissa de la Cruz and Michael Johnston
Series: Heart of Dread, #1
Genre: Young Adult, Dystopian, Paranormal, Romance
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Word Rating: Cool (Get it? Because they live in world of ice? No? Ok.)
On Goodreads

Hello, everyone! I've been really absent lately due to the high volume of work I've been getting at school. Unfortunately, for the time being, I have to switch from reviewing every week to attempting every two weeks. Between all my school reading, finding time to read leisurely is really difficult – more difficult than I would have expected. For the past two weeks, in between all my homework, I've been reading Frozen, and I'm happy to have finally been able to finish it.

After reading a less than positive review about Frozen, I was a bit skeptical to jump into it. I got an uncorrected proof of Frozen at an author signing at BookExpo America this year because the cover and the plot looked really interesting. Luckily, this book did not let me down.

Frozen starts out telling us about Nat and a voice inside her head telling her what to do. From there, she goes on a journey to escape from the frozen land in which she lives and find a hidden paradise called “the Blue” with help from a “runner” named Wes and his crew. Along the way, Nat and Wes’s relationship grows and Nat figures out more and more about who she is.

Although Nat and Wes weren’t my favorite characters of all time, I still enjoyed them and their stories. Nat’s struggle to remember who she was and what she should do about the voice in her head was really interesting because the voice almost had a personality of its own. Nat also intrigued me because she had a range of how she behaved. There are some books with wimpy heroines and some with strong heroines. I’d say Nat falls somewhere in between – she tries to be brave, but sometimes she gets scared and needs Wes to come help her out. Nat is also interesting because she struggles how she sees herself. She so wants to be good, but she’s convinced she’s a monster. Watching her grow and begin to accept herself throughout the story was really great.

Similar to Nat, Wes had a good balance of personality. Wes and his crew decide to escort Nat into forbidden territory for money. Jobs and food are scarce in their world of ice, so in order to get “heat credits”, a currency in their world, he takes on the job, even though it’s dangerous. At first, Wes seems really tough and brave – he’s a former soldier who often partakes in spectacles of danger and forbidden adventures. However, we slowly see the other sides to him. We find out some of Wes’s background regarding his family and a sister he is searching for. The way he cares for Nat as well as the rest of his crew also provides a contrast to his initially smug and tough personality.

The one main complaint I have about this book is that there was too much going on and it wasn’t explained thoroughly enough. I really enjoyed hearing about the world and the different aspects, but there seemed to be so many different things being thrown to the reader throughout the book that all those things seemed like random, unrelated tidbits. The world was just so elaborate, which is awesome, but it wasn’t detailed enough to be as good as it could have been.

Other than that small complaint, the story was great and the writing was good as well. I see a lot of potential in this series and I’m interested to see the direction in which the next installment takes. Overall, I’d definitely recommend Frozen to lovers of dystopian and fantasy. The story has great pacing and keeps the reader interested as Nat, Wes, and the crew journey towards the Blue.

- Kiersten

Would you be willing to risk your life in search of a rumored paradise?
Let us know in the comments!

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