Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Review: Frozen by Melissa de la Cruz

Title: Frozen (Heart of Dread #1)
Author: Melissa de la Cruz
Source: Goodreads
Genre: Young Adult, Dystopia, Paranormal
Release Date: September 17, 2013
Reviewed by: Jasmyn

From New York Times bestselling author Melissa de la Cruz and Michael Johnston comes this remarkable first book in a spellbinding new series about the dawn of a new kind of magic.

Welcome to New Vegas, a city once covered in bling, now blanketed in ice. Like much of the destroyed planet, the place knows only one temperature—freezing. But some things never change. The diamond in the ice desert is still a 24-hour hedonistic playground and nothing keeps the crowds away from the casino floors, never mind the rumors about sinister sorcery in its shadows.

At the heart of this city is Natasha Kestal, a young blackjack dealer looking for a way out. Like many, she's heard of a mythical land simply called “the Blue.” They say it’s a paradise, where the sun still shines and the waters are turquoise. More importantly, it’s a place where Nat won’t be persecuted, even if her darkest secret comes to light.

But passage to the Blue is treacherous, if not impossible, and her only shot is to bet on a ragtag crew of mercenaries led by a cocky runner named Ryan Wesson to take her there. Danger and deceit await on every corner, even as Nat and Wes find themselves inexorably drawn to each other. But can true love survive the lies? Fiery hearts collide in this fantastic tale of the evil men do and the awesome power within us all.

Frozen is a new look at what our world may come to if human consumption and trash get out of control.  With the sun blocked from the sky, the land has become a frozen wasteland.  Heat and real food are lucury commodities, and strange traits have begun to show up in people. Nat is one of these people, with a strange voice in her head she is capable of destroying things, but she can't really control it.  She longs to escape the city and head for the Blue.  A legendary place where the sun shines, its warm, and food is actually grown.

She books a trip with a runner named Ryan and off the go in search of a place most think doesn't exist.  They run into amazing and dangerous things along the way, including slavers, pirates, and magical and strange beings.  It was an exciting ride from page one.  While mostly an adventure style story, there's a bit of romance thrown in here and there that threads the the story helping to hold the characters together and make them very real personalities.  With a very surprise ending that leaves you wishing book two was already in your hands, I think Melissa de la Cruz has another hit series on her hands.

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