Review: Frozen by Melissa de la Cruz & Michael Johnston


Frozen by Melissa de la Cruz & Michael Johnston // VBC ReviewFrozen (Heart of Dread #1)
Melissa de la Cruz and Michael Johnston
Published: Sept. 17, 2013 (Putnam Juvenile)
Purchase: Book Depository or Amazon
Review source: Borrowed from the library

Reviewed by: Amanda

Rating (out of 5): 4 stars

In the middle of a frozen tundra, Vegas still beckons, Sin City keeping its promises even as the rest of the world is encased in ice. Natasha’s a blackjack dealer, but not for long–as one of the Marked, she knows her days are numbered, and she’s got to find a way out of the city.

She hires Ryan Wesson and his crew to take her beyond the fence line and through the treacherous waters of the ocean, hoping to find a paradise called the Blue. But it turns out dodging trashbergs is easier than dodging unexpected feelings.

Melissa De La Cruz teams up with her husband Michael Johnston in this new post-apocalyptic trilogy about an icy wasteland of a planet. The waters are polluted, the planet is stuck in the next ice age, and trash has piled up everywhere. Countries as we know them have dissolved into new territories, and fierce battles are fought to keep people in line.

Natasha is Marked, meaning her eyes are the wrong color and there’s a mark somewhere on her body, indicating what she’s capable of. The problem is, she’s not sure what her power is. There’s a voice in her head, telling her to do things, the loudest of which is to get out. Wes doesn’t care; all he wants is the money he’s been promised. It’ll feed his crew for a good while to come, and with food scarce, it’s his number one priority.

The way Nat and Wes come together is sometimes awkward, sometimes sweet, and a lot of fun. Both are determined to use the other, and both are surprised when they find they no longer want to. There’s a lot of miscommunication between them, and it makes for some frustrating pages. Another frustrating part? Sometimes I forgot they were only teenagers. Both Nat and Wes are sixteen, but the way the world was built and the story developed made them seem much older. It was a little jarring to be reminded they were still so young.

I loved this world, though. The sheer creativity and detail of it kept me reading through the rough patches. Nothing can grow, yet there are signs the planet is regenerating. There are canyons of trash and things like bacon fruit (looks like bacon, tastes like fruit, but really makes for good insulation). Whole generations don’t know what the sun looks like or have ever seen a bird, and the written word has fallen out of favor, the general population using something called textlish.

The ending of Frozen was a bit of a cliffhanger, but I didn’t mind it, because in the end, Nat and Wes stayed true to themselves. I can’t wait to join them in Stolen.

Sexual content: kissing

3 Responses to “Review: Frozen by Melissa de la Cruz & Michael Johnston”

  1. Thanks for bringing this book to my attention! I hadn’t realized she’s written anything since her Blue Bloods series. 🙂

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