Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Icons by Margaret Stohl

Release Date: May 7th 2013

Series: Icons (bk. 1)

Genera: Dystopian Sci-fi

Subjects: Aliens, psychic ability, emotions, futuristic, post-apocalyptic, genetic engineering

Age/Grade Level: Teen 12+

Length: 433 pgs. (ARC version)

HC/PB: Hardcover

List Price: $17.99

Publisher: Little, Brown

Summary/ product description: “Your heart beats only with their permission.
Everything changed on The Day. The day the windows shattered. The day the power stopped. The day Dol's family dropped dead. The day Earth lost a war it didn't know it was fighting.
Since then, Dol has lived a simple life in the countryside -- safe from the shadow of the Icon and its terrifying power. Hiding from the one truth she can't avoid.
She's different. She survived. Why?
When Dol and her best friend, Ro, are captured and taken to the Embassy, off the coast of the sprawling metropolis once known as the City of Angels, they find only more questions. While Ro and fellow hostage Tima rage against their captors, Dol finds herself drawn to Lucas, the Ambassador's privileged son. But the four teens are more alike than they might think, and the timing of their meeting isn't a coincidence. It's a conspiracy.
Within the Icon's reach, Dol, Ro, Tima, and Lucas discover that their uncontrollable emotions -- which they've always thought to be their greatest weaknesses -- may actually be their greatest strengths.
Bestselling author Margaret Stohl delivers the first book in a heart-pounding series set in a haunting new world where four teens must piece together the mysteries of their pasts -- in order to save the future”

My Rating: êêêê1/4

My Review: This was a very unique book. It’s nothing like Beautiful Creatures. Instead of the Southern culture and magic in that series, this book has Latino culture in it because of its Los Angelos setting. It also has some futuristic stuff and alien technology. The book is well written and easy to follow. There are some parts that keep you guessing. I really liked the parts in between chapters that were records and journal entries, or other information. It gave me insight into this world.

The world building was awesome. Well done. It’s explained without an info dump. The transcripts are a very clever way of explaining what happened. But I have to ask, why are so many alien movies and books set in Los Angelos? (Or New York. Never Chicago.) Of course, this book is 16 years after they took over, so it’s very different from any alien movie. I was hoping for something like Ancient Aliens, maybe that the Aliens came back, and were here in the past. Instead these aliens use the Icons to keep humans in line. They can kill living things by emitting an electromagnetic pulse.

The characters are all pretty good and likeable. They’re all very different from each other. I like that the four main characters have different abilities that are related to emotion. It’s a really cool concept. Dol is empathic, and Ro is really strong because of anger. Lucas has influence and Tima can make you afraid, or something. My favorite character in this book isn’t even a human. Doc, a computer/AI, who tells (really bad) jokes made me laugh a lot.  And there’s Fortis, a Merk with an Australian/British accent who helps Dol. He’s funny and his accent is easy to imagine. They’re all well-developed.

Some reviewers are saying that this book is slow. And it is in some parts. But that’s how the tension builds. There’s a little bit of a love triangle, but not much romance. This is more of a self-discovery story than a romance.

For the most part, I’m not sure why I liked this book. I did, maybe because I didn’t get bored. It was something different and different is good. I love creative story lines and dystopias. Sure, the ending could have been better, but it was good enough. I really do want to read the next book. I wonder what will happen and how this series will play out.

Cover Art Review: Definitely like the new cover better than the ARC’s. But I kind of wish there was an actually towering Icon on it, instead of just having the observatory on the side. Like the destroyed title type.


~Haley G

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