Frozen by Erin Bowman is a YA dystopian fiction novel set in an America plagued by civil war. Book #2 in the trilogy, the story takes on a quest/mission theme as Gray(‘s father) and his team embark on a journey to find allies for their rebellion. I originally compared book #1 to Divergent and The Maze Runner, but I’m taking out Divergent. If you loved The Maze Runner, go ahead and pick up the Taken trilogy.
Book two won me over. I was up in the air with Taken, giving it a tentative 7/10, but Frozen was much more captivating, dealing with major themes such as humanity, inner strength, hope, and the nature of love. Lately, I have found that a lot of YA books try to deal with theses themes, but it doesn’t always work. Frozen made it work.
In Taken, I faulted Emma and Gray’s relationship, and while I still hated the idea of them together, we got to watch as Gray grappled with what it meant to love two different people, who were both exceptionally different. Emma represents young love, a love that is easy and routed more in the ideals of what Gray thinks a relationship should be. Bree represents a different kind of love, one that is challenging and full of passion. I found it interesting to watch Gray come to terms with this; I think it’s an issue that arises frequently in the real world. Does a relation have to be easy to work, or do the hard parts make it worth it?
My favourite character in the book is Jackson, a Forgery who struggles with what it means to be human – and demands the others struggle with it as well. I loved the complexity of Jackson right from his first appearance. With him came an important question: What makes a person human? The concept of the Forgery was the highlight of the book for me, and I’m excited to see where Bowman will take it next (although I have a few theories).
The twist at the end was sort of perfect, in a few ways. I saw it coming in part, but not fully, which is impressive. I’m usually great at predicting endings, and I love when a book makes me go “Oooomigod!”
I even picked out a couple quotes that I loved:
“So much power in those words. So much in dreams.”
“Truthfully, the thought of braving anything without her seems utterly absurd.”
My only issue with the book is the flaw in character development. There were traumatic events that should have made me cry, but didn’t. If the characters had been more developed, you can bet I would have gotten teary. I also wish there was a better villain – I just didn’t find Frank that evil. Marco was better, but he still wasn’t believable enough for my taste. He doesn’t fill me with rage like a villain should.
Overall rating: 8/10
The book pleasantly surprised me. I’m hoping book #3 will end the series with a bang.