A dystopian and heroine with a lot more gumption.
This is by far one of my favorite dystopian series. It’s gritty, realistic and not afraid to venture into the dark side of humanity. It is a real survival story.
Our protagonist Ivy is practical, strong and we see her start to question those around her and form her own opinions. So many times we get a waif, or a character bred for a situation who neglects to question if what they are doing is right until it’s far too late in YA. Ivy has the inner strength and intelligence to view her world with open eyes.
This series has been compared to ‘The Selection’ series and ‘Cruel Beauty;’ but it is only in premise. Ivy has been selected to be married off to the leader’s son, but her family are a rebelling faction and are priming Ivy to assassinate the boy. Bishop, her hapless victim, is everything you’d expect coming from the cushy life he’s had… and then not. He’s got his head on his shoulders and is compassionate. I really liked how both our main characters do not fall into a trope.
I’ve read in some reviews that this is an instalove romance – but I strongly disagree. Their age (sixteen) is brought up, and so is their sensibility knowing that they are not ready for a marriage, let alone an intimate relationship with someone who is basically a stranger. Their approach in a practical one. Their friendship develops organically, and has got to be one of the better developed coupling I’ve read in this genre.
There is a lot going on in their society, and the world outside of it, and both the main characters have been sheltered somewhat, and it was fascinating to see them uncover truths and cope with the burden of that knowledge. Some decisions wield heavy repercussions, and both Ivy and Bishop are not immune to them.
There are moments of violence and manipulation. It is raw, but dealt with responsibly. And the in world they live in, it’s unavoidable, and I’m greatful the author took us down these avenues instead of glossing over the uglier aspects of humanity.
Where ‘The Book of Ivy’ is more a political struggle, ‘The Revolution of Ivy’ is a physical one for survival. Both rated four stars from me and is a solid, engaging read. I can’t recommend this series more.
On a side note – if you don’t handle cliff hangers well, then I’m pre-warning you – the first book has a doozy, so if you hate waiting, get these together to alleviate any angst 😉
For individual reviews click on the links below:
‘The Revolution of Ivy’ – https://strokingfire.wordpress.com/2016/12/13/book-review-the-revolution-of-ivy-by-amy-engel/
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