Published by Tor Teen on January 31st 2012
Genres: Young Adult, Fiction
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The Bill of Rights has been revoked, and replaced with the Moral Statutes.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.
Article 5 is your typical dystopian in that you automatically know who the bad guy is and what the fences are for. The villain is the government, and they are ruthless. They’ll stop at nothing to make sure you comply with their ridiculous rules even if that means executing you. I’ve had this book forever and finally decided to pick it up for a readathon challenge. I kept putting it off because tons of dystopians follow a certain path with a crazy world after a war. It is hard being original now since we had a huge dystopian craze. Usually dystopians equal fence + crappy government.
But I really liked it because going straight in you are threw into this ruthlessness created by the government. There isn’t much World Building or back history, so it is straight to the action, and it can get super intense in some parts. It is a good thing for the pacing, but you are left wondering what caused this war, and what ultimately made the government decide to go back to how things were in the early 1900’s. Women rights are pretty much gone. If we could have gotten just a smidgen of details on what prompted things to be the way they were, it would have been a 5 star dystopian for me because of the intensity.
The book starts with Ember’s mom being arrested because of Article 5, and Ember gets sent to some kind of rehab center. It is almost seems like it’s forcing girls to be like nuns in training. The thing is the one who arrest’s her mom is Chase – the guy she’s loved. Cue the drama. Your led to believe that Chase has become a typical soldier but Chase ends up having other plans. Ember and Chase go through so much, so I get why Ember is back and forth about Chase. But Ember forgets what Chase has ALSO went through and she seems totally ungrateful for everything Chase does at least until the end.
There were a couple things that bugged me. Ember’s obsession about her mother. I get she wanted to rescue her but wow it is borderline obsessive the way she acts. It totally clouds her judgement sometimes, and makes Ember do stupid things. And like I said earlier I needed a little bit of back history. Lastly, some of the rules the government has seemed a little over the top especially without us knowing what caused all the crazy rules. Other than that, it was a good dystopian book just like I like! Super intense, page turning, and made you wanna know what is gonna happen to all the characters.