Review: Article 5 by Kristen Simmons


Article 5 by Kristen Simmons (Article 5 #1)

Hardcover, 362 pages
Published January 31st 2012 by Tor Teen
Average Rating: 3.78

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The Bill of Rights has been revoked, and replaced with the Moral Statutes.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

five star

Five “Chase + Ember” Stars

Article 5 will always be a book I will go back to read. Like The Body Finder I will always enjoy and love this original wonder of a book.

I read this book around the time when Divergent, or any of those Top YA novels came out. Despite The Hunger Games and Divergent becoming a huge franchise, I think this book, the whole trilogy, went under the radar when it shouldn’t have.

I don’t want to compare Divergent to Article 5 because both of these series are uniquely their own, but Article 5 is set in a world similar to Divergent, in a sense where there is no longer peace and equality and the government is very..uh… vicious?..controlling?…unjust? The world of Article 5 is more violent, solemn, and binding.

Other than a pretense of a perfect government, everything else in these books are different. Let’s start my review on Article 5 now, Divergent will come later. 🙂

With the brief description of the world in this book, the plot and main conflict is really appealing. It was creative, interesting and a total page-turner. Everything from the world to the scenes to the climax was unique and never-seen-before. It was rather refreshing to recently read this again. Like most dystopian books, there is a rebellion strongly involved in the main plot, but you don’t get a peek at that until the second book, Breaking Point.

Even with a great plot, this book was mostly a way to introduce the characters. You really got to know Ember and Chase, but that doesn’t mean they don’t develop in books 2 & 3.

Ember is a damsel in distress for half the book. Don’t let that alarm you because it wasn’t that bad. She puts on her big-girl panties at the end. Hallelujah! Ember thinks too much, but is reckless at the same time. She’s a smart girl and her devotion and love to her mother is sweet as heck! The duration of the novel is her and Chase travelling to a safe house. Chase knows how to survive because of his training as a soldier, Ember does not. Ember is put out of her comfort zone while travelling with Chase and also during her time at the Rehabilitation Center where she got sent off to for being a violation to Article 5.

Note: The Moral Statutes mentioned in the blurb above are called Articles. It’s practically what we call Bills. Article 5 is “Children are considered valid citizens only when conceived by a married man and wife.”

Overall, I really like Ember and her struggles made sense to this new world and her situation. She faced the world head on and realized the reality of her life. Despite being a damsel in distress for a while, I liked her a lot in the end.

Chase Jennings is the troubled, and scarred soldier. He really brought the emotions out of me in Article 5. Chase left Ember all those years ago to become a soldier for the government. During his training, he became cold and harsh. When Chase cross paths with Ember once again, she melts his icy exterior and Chase learns to love Ember again. (He never stopped loving her in the first place)

Even though the book was written in Ember’s point of view, Simmons’ writing brought out his emotions and his inner conflict so perfectly I almost cried from his pain. My heart really went out to Chase in this book.

The broken soldier plus the (sorta) damsel in distress made the perfect love story. As you must know, I’m a sucker for romantic love stories. Chase and Ember is on my list of great love stories. Both are troubled in their own way, and they overcome them together. *heart eyes*

The romance between these two characters were phenomenal. There was tension and a little bit of hate, but in the end there was a HEA as good at it can get despite the circumstances.

I don’t know if anybody knows but Kristen Simmons wrote a few extra pieces in Chase’s POV. It’s on her website and I read them over and over again. You really get to see what Chase’s life was when he was a soldier. I’ll link it right here. I recommend reading this to fans of Article 5! It’s a special treat you don’t want to miss out on!

Article 5 is a great book for dystopia fans. With a side of romance, those who love books with action and adventure will love this one as well!

If you loved Divergent, I’m pretty sure you’ll love this book as well!

Keep calm and read on!



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