ARC REVIEW: The Book of Ivy (The Book of Ivy #1) by Amy Engel + Giveaway!
AUTHOR: Amy Engel
PUBLICATION: Published: November 11th 2014 by Entangled: Teen
GENRE: YA > SCiFi | Dystopia | Romance
PAGES: 304pages (paperback)
SOURCE: arc via tour host
You can buy the Book here:
BLURB FROM GOODREADS:
After a brutal nuclear war, the United States was left decimated. A small group of survivors eventually banded together, but only after more conflict over which family would govern the new nation. The Westfalls lost. Fifty years later, peace and control are maintained by marrying the daughters of the losing side to the sons of the winning group in a yearly ritual.
This year, it is my turn.
My name is Ivy Westfall, and my mission is simple: to kill the president’s son—my soon-to-be husband—and restore the Westfall family to power.
But Bishop Lattimer is either a very skilled actor or he’s not the cruel, heartless boy my family warned me to expect. He might even be the one person in this world who truly understands me. But there is no escape from my fate. I am the only one who can restore the Westfall legacy.
Because Bishop must die. And I must be the one to kill him…
“My mission is not to make him happy and bear his children and be his wife. My mission is to kill him”
Never mind that I have to wait for a year to read the sequel.
This book! This awesome and fantastic and brilliant book kept me up all night an I’m not even complaining! I remember saying ‘Okay, just the first chapter’ then BAM! After almost 5 hours, I’m still in the same position, I’ve forgotten my hunger and bladder and yes, I was bit of a mess. Amy Engel, you are one genius lady!
Ivy is the daughter of the founder (the losing side) of their community, and as a tradition, she’s part of the many teenagers who must marry the boys of the group who won to maintain peace. Because Ivy is special, the guy she’s marrying is pretty special too. Its none other than the son’s president, Bishop. Ivy doesn’t care all about that because she only have one mission. And that’s to kill Bishop, which should be easy because even before they met, she already hated him for his fathers doing. But Bishop turned out to be different from what Ivy is expecting, which made things complicated.
Ooooooh man. The characterization in this book is superb. Ivy is a very likeable protagonist. She may seem cold and distant at the first chapter, but as soon as she starts revealing the plans that she and her family planned, I started enjoying her POV’s more. I felt for her. I can really feel how torn she is between her loyalty to her family to the guy she’s starting to love. Talk about decisions!!
The plot was intense and absolutely thrilling. The author knows how to grip her readers. She knows when to make her readers gasps, or when to melt them with one of Bishop’s line or when to break their hearts from Ivy’s monologue. Seriously. For a debut novel, this is impressive.
What I really love about The Book of Ivy is that it will make you think. Morally, politically and you’ll find yourself asking if what would you do if you’re in Ivy’s shoes. What is the right thing to do? Who has the right to say that its right.. or that its wrong. And who’s side is the right one?
World building needs more improvement but for the first book, its very believable and convincing. The Book of Ivy has well written characters, gripping writing and heartfelt romance. Throw in some lies, twists and surprises… you have that successful dystopia book you’re looking for. One of my favorites this year!
Amy Engel was born in Kansas and after a childhood spent bouncing between countries (Iran, Taiwan) and states (Kansas; California; Missouri; Washington, D.C.), she settled in Kansas City, Missouri, where she lives with her husband and two kids. Before devoting herself full-time to motherhood and writing, she was a criminal defense attorney, which is not quite as exciting as it looks on TV. When she has a free moment, she can usually be found reading, running, or shoe shopping. The Book of Ivy is her debut YA novel. Find her online at http://amyengel.net/ or @aengelwrites.