Saturday, June 1, 2013

The Ward by Jordana Frankel

Published: April 30th, 2013
Publisher: Katherine Tegan Books
Pages: 400
Copy: Publisher via Edelweis
Summary: Goodreads
Sixteen-year-old Ren is a daredevil mobile racer who will risk everything to survive in the Ward, what remains of a water-logged Manhattan. To save her sister, who is suffering from a deadly illness thought to be caused by years of pollution, Ren accepts a secret mission from the government: to search for a freshwater source in the Ward, with the hope of it leading to a cure.

However, she never expects that her search will lead to dangerous encounters with a passionate young scientist; a web of deceit and lies; and an earth-shattering mystery that’s lurking deep beneath the water’s rippling surface.

Jordana Frankel’s ambitious debut novel and the first in a two-book series, The Ward is arresting, cinematic, and thrilling—perfect for fans of Scott Westerfeld or Ann Aguirre

The Ward is an interesting and engrossing look at a post-apocalyptic Manhattan.  The polar ice caps are melting/have melted (I wasn't quite sure which) and life is continuing in a Manhattan that is almost unrecognisable.  I've read several reviews where readers have felt that the world building was lacking in the Ward, but I didn't feel that.  I had no trouble picturing Ren hurtling down rooftops in her dragster, or going from building to building using catwalks over the water.

I enjoyed Ren's character and her fierce loyalty to her 'sister' Aven.  Such complete devotion was touching and real.  Her relationship with Benny and Derek was interesting and her attraction for Derek was totally unforced and believable to my mind.  There was just the right amount of confusion over Derek's actions, but she was able to see the truth without too much drama.  One small point that irked me though, was Callum's ability to provide a cure so quickly  - he just seemed a little young for that level of expertise - but that could just be me, being picky. 

The whole time I was reading I was reminded of the quote 'water, water everywhere and ne'er a drop to drink' which I think comes from The Ryme of the Ancient Mariner, but I could be wrong.  I seemed to drink rather a lot while reading this one too!

All in all, the more I read, the more I enjoyed this one and I look forward to seeing what happens next for Ren and Derek.

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