Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Review: Breaking Point by Kristen Simmons

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I received this book for free from Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: Breaking Point by Kristen SimmonsBreaking Point by Kristen Simmons
Series: Article 5 #2
Published by Tor Teen on February 12th 2013
Source: Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group
Buy on Amazon

The second installment in Kristen Simmons's fast-paced, gripping YA dystopian series.

After faking their deaths to escape from prison, Ember Miller and Chase Jennings have only one goal: to lay low until the Federal Bureau of Reformation forgets they ever existed.

Near-celebrities now for the increasingly sensationalized tales of their struggles with the government, Ember and Chase are recognized and taken in by the Resistance—an underground organization working to systematically take down the government. At headquarters, all eyes are on the sniper, an anonymous assassin taking out FBR soldiers one by one. Rumors are flying about the sniper’s true identity, and Ember and Chase welcome the diversion….

Until the government posts its most-wanted list, and their number one suspect is Ember herself.

Orders are shoot to kill, and soldiers are cleared to fire on suspicion alone. Suddenly Ember can’t even step onto the street without fear of being recognized, and “laying low” is a joke. Even members of the Resistance are starting to look at her sideways.

With Chase urging her to run, Ember must decide: Go into hiding…or fight back?

As I got back into the desolation that is is Ember’s world, it didn’t take long until the rush of it all came right back. The first book, Article 5, was a lot of fun with tons of action and wonderful characters, leaving me dying for this one. The sequel begins where Article 5 one left off, with short recaps along the way for those of you, like me, who forget everything they’ve read previously. I often have difficulty getting into a sequel because don’t remember the story, nor my connection to the characters, but Kristen has a great way of bringing it all back as if no time had passed.

In Article 5 she created a world that was extremely dreary, yet believable for a futuristic setting; in Breaking Point, we get to see even more of that world. We’re brought into conspiracies and meet rebels who are trying, like everyone else, to survive and get justice in this cruel controlled environment they’ve been forced to endure. And in this world, we have Ember and Chase who are on the run after faking their death. These character, who I already greatly enjoyed in the first book, go through even more development and growth in this sequel, both individually and together as a couple. Ember becomes even stronger after having to live through so much loss and pain, rediscovering who she is. Her courage and will make her a great protagonist for this story. However, I found the side characters to be the ones who really stood out for me this time. Their personalities and charisma shine through, and they’re all dealing with their own personal issues which add in interesting, sometimes mysterious, subplots.

The plot does not cease either, there is action in this novel from beginning to end. We cover a lot of ground, discovering more of the workings of this world along the way. When the adrenaline finally breaks, we get to enjoy the sweet romance that mists this series. There is less of it in this sequel than its predecessor, though I never once thought there wasn’t enough. I appreciate the fact that they have a believable relationships that doesn’t need to be overly dramatic or mushy. It’s there, it exists no doubt, and it’s completely real, but it doesn’t become the essence of the story. I also commend Kristen for not daring to a love triangle when it’s clearly not needed.

A sequel with minimal middle book vibe is always a satisfying read. Breaking Point does just that, progressing the story to a point that is sure to bring us into an exciting finale in book 3!


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Canadian blogger, wife, mother, coffee lover, and sarcastic at heart! She has had a love for all things bookish since before Amazon and eReaders existed *le gasp*. You can also find her organizing tours and other fun things at Xpresso Book Tours.

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20 Responses to “Review: Breaking Point by Kristen Simmons”

  1. Gellie

    I really need to read the first book now! To be honest, I’m quite tired of the dystopian setting but I’m lured in by great character and development which seems to be the case in this series. So yeah, me want.

    Lovely review, Giselle 😀

  2. Nick

    I remember enjoying the first book so I’m glad to hear that this one is as good, Giselle. And thank goodness there’s little recaps because I honestly can’t remember what happened in the first book. O_O
    Great character development you say? I’m definitely in! Brilliant review, Giselle! 🙂

  3. Amy

    I should really start this series. It sounds like it’s really great. It’s good to know that this doesn’t suffer from middle book syndrome either. And character development is a major win!! Awesome review babe!!

  4. Christina

    Oh no! A little middle book vibe… But still, I think both you and Jenni gave it four stars, so I’m excited. This is at the tippy top of my review pile. Woo!

  5. Jenni @ Alluring Reads

    I really liked this one too! The romance is so perfect. Like you said, it’s not overly mushy but you never question how they feel about one another. That ending?!?!?! OMG I can’t wait to see what happens next!

  6. Shane

    I feel so bad that I haven’t read Article 5 as yet. Glad you enjoyed both book s and can’t wait to read them myself. Good review!

  7. Ashley

    Thank goodness for recaps. 😛 I’m horrible with remembering all the details in the first book LOL! I’m glad to hear that this book is super action packed and just as good as the first book!

  8. Camille Picott

    Saggy sequels scare me, which is one of the many reasons I often only read the first book in a series. Glad this one was an exception! I’ll have to check this series out.

  9. Maja (The Nocturnal Library)

    I’m all about belivable, well-built worlds. I really need to get my act together and read Article 5, especially now that Breaking Point is almost out. love that it’s action from start to finish, I get bored with dystopias that slow down too much.
    Fantastic review, Giselle!

  10. Eileen

    YAY I’m so glad this didn’t suffer from Middle Book Syndrome I really hate when that happens! I mean, a second book is supposed to bring you from the epic beginning to the epic end, so it better be epic.

    No pressure or anything.

    And also, I really have to read Article 5! It sounds like that one is really epic and the fact that you see more of that totally bleak world makes me want to squee on top of a roof. AND AND AND! Who doesn’t love post apocalyptic things? Nothing like the end of the world for a nice Sunday read! Now I want to read Article 5. *skips off*

    PS—It took me five tries to do the end of that asterisk in *skips off* WHY PARENTHESES SYMBOL WHY.

  11. Molli @ Once Upon a Prologue

    Hope you don’t mind I skimmed your review, because I fail and haven’t read Article 5, BUUUUT I really want to this year. I wanted to see what your impression was of Breaking Point though, because I am so excited for this series. So I’m psyched you enjoyed it! YAY no middle-book-itis!

  12. Micheline D

    I really hope to be able to get into this series soon – I remember your review of Article 5 so I’m glad that you enjoyed the sequel too. All the more reason for me to hurry up and catch up! Great review!!

  13. Renuka Diwan

    I really can’t wait to read this one. I still remember Article 5 vividly. One of my favorite dystopians. Awesome review and really beautifully designed blog.

  14. BookStacksOnDeck

    Yessss! I’ve waited so long for this one since I last read the first book so I’m glad there’s recaps!!! I read a second book in a series not too long ago & I was like wait – who is ____ again?!?! hahaa, glad you liked it! Gotta read it soon! <3