Three by Kristen Simmons
(Article 5 trilogy #3)
Publisher: Macmillan-Tor/Forge/Tor Teen
Publication Date: Feb 11 2014
Genres: Young Adult, Dystopia
Kristen Simmons’ fast-paced, gripping YA dystopian series continues in Three.
Ember Miller and Chase Jennings are ready to stop running. After weeks spent in hiding as two of the Bureau of Reformation’s most wanted criminals, they have finally arrived at the safe house, where they hope to live a safe and quiet existence.
And all that’s left is smoking ruins.
Devastated by the demolition of their last hope, Ember and Chase follow the only thing left to them—tracks leading away from the wreckage. The only sign that there may have been survivors.
With their high profile, they know they can’t stay out in the open for long. They take shelter in the wilderness and amidst the ruins of abandoned cities as they follow the tracks down the coast, eventually finding refugees from the destroyed safe house. Among them is someone from Chase’s past—someone he never thought he’d see again.
Banding together, they search for a place to hide, aiming for a settlement a few of them have heard about…a settlement that is rumored to house the nebulous organization known as Three. The very group that has provided Ember with a tiny ray of hope ever since she was first forced on the run.
Three is responsible for the huge network of underground safe houses and resistance groups across the country. And they may offer Ember her only chance at telling the world her story.
At fighting back.
*My Book Review*
DISCLAIMER: This book/eBook being reviewed was provided free of charge by NetGalley in return for an honest review.
This book is the third (and final) one in the Article 5 trilogy. I haven’t read the previous ones so was interested to see how much of this book I would get. I’m glad the author managed to throw in just enough back story to keep me informed on the previous stories without it being overly bogged down with it. There were enough snippets of intriguing back story to whet my appetite enough to make me want to go back and read the first two books! Well done Kristen Simmons.
The story is fast paced to begin with. The main characters, Ember and Chase, also have a love story that is deliciously adult for a young adult series. I was glad I wasn’t subjected to a novel that was basically a glorified Mills & Boon draped over the dystopian genre, which, unfortunately, is how so many YA dystopians read these days. *sigh*
At points the story slowed though. Once Endurance was reached, I found I put this book down and was hesitant to pick it up again. I’m not sure what went wrong with this section, there was plenty of mystery and second guessing going on between the paranoid characters to make it seem interesting. But it just wasn’t. Luckily I persevered though as once Ember and Chase were back on the road, the story gathered momentum again and I was whisked away on their journey.
I suppose there were plenty of moments where characters from previous books re-emerged that should have gotten me all excited because of their past history, but because I hadn’t read the previous books, I missed out on this extra layer. I’m not sure it would have made much of a difference though as this book stands alone fairly well.
What I really LOVED about this novel, though, was how the author bought to the readers attention the complexity of war. We are drawn in to discover that when parties engage in war, there may be a right side and a wrong side, but when you strip this away and just look at the battles fought, what we are basically left with are people killing other people for what they believe in. While the author does not resolve this conflict (and how can you even begin to come up with a solution to a problem that has been plaguing mankind for eternity?), we are certainly left pondering whether one life lost for the perceived greater good is too much or whether there is a fine line that must be danced in order for an outcome that is better than the present. I cannot applaud the author enough for raising this issue and delivering it succinctly to a young adult audience.
However, the ending unravelled for me quite substantially. There was plenty of action – maybe too much. I just felt like I was on a roller coaster that kept spinning and all I needed was for it to stop for more than a second or two so I could catch my breath again. It just felt like it was one thing on top of another, on top of another. In saying that though, I stayed up WAY beyond my bedtime finishing this book because I couldn’t possibly sleep with without knowing how it all ended.
Overall, I am giving Three by Kristen Simmons 3.5 out of 5 stars (and rounding it up to 4 stars for GoodReads and Amazon). I can’t wait to go back and read the series in it’s entirety to see how it all unfolds from the start!
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About the Author
Kristen Simmons has a master’s degree in social work and is an advocate for mental health. She loves Jazzercise, her husband, and her precious greyhound, Rudy. Also chocolate. She currently lives in Tampa, Florida.