New York, Los Angeles, and Washington, DC 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The Bill of Rights has been revoked, and replaced with the Moral Statutes.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 don’t usually come back.
17-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 to forget that people weren’t always arrested for reading the wrong books or staying out after dark. That life in the United States used to be different.
In the three years since the war ended, 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 Federal Bureau of Reformation. 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 what’s worse, one of the arresting officers is none other than Chase Jennings…the only boy Ember has ever loved.
Ember is the main character and best part of this novel. She is brave, smart, and can think on her feet. The reader will take an instant liking to her. Chase is the love interest. The reader will start out with mixed feelings about him, it is up to the reader to decide what to believe.
This novel is a dystopian. The author portrays a completely different United States. There are strict rules, superfluous laws, etc... When Ember's mother is taken away due to a breach in Article 5, Ember knows she must find her mother no matter the cost. Along the way, Ember is arrested herself and experiences more than a few near captures, captures, and scary scenes. The author vividly describes this new world...and what it takes to survive in it.
The characters are dynamic, the reader will grow attached to Ember. The events are fast-paced and exciting, the reader will root for Ember and Chase throughout the novel. The ending was perfect, wouldn't change a thing. This novel is highly recommended teen/young adult readers.
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