Frozen (Heart of Dread Series #1)

Frozen (Heart of Dread Series #1)

by Melissa de la Cruz, Michael Johnston


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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.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780399257544
Publisher: Penguin Young Readers Group
Publication date: 09/17/2013
Series: Heart of Dread Series , #1
Pages: 320
Product dimensions: 5.88(w) x 8.40(h) x 1.16(d)
Lexile: HL770L (what's this?)
Age Range: 12 - 17 Years

About the Author

Melissa de la Cruz is the New York Times, USA Today, Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times and Publisher's Weekly internationally best­selling author of many critically acclaimed novels. Her Blue Bloods series has sold over three million copies and the Witches of East End series is now an hour-long television drama on the Lifetime network.
Michael Johnston is Melissa’s husband and heretofore “si­lent partner.” He is co-creator of the Blue Bloods and Witches of East End series. Melissa and Michael live with their daughter in Los Angeles and Palm Springs, California.

Read an Excerpt

Some say the world will end in fire,

Excerpted from "Frozen"
by .
Copyright © 2014 Melissa de la Cruz.
Excerpted by permission of Penguin Young Readers Group.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

Praise for FROZEN:
From MARGARET STOHL, New York Times bestselling co-author of the Beautiful Creatures trilogy:
“De la Cruz and Johnston’s FROZEN is as fearless as a futuristic Game of Thrones for YA readers – and equally addictive. This epic new take on classic sci-fi and fantasy is equal parts wild and wildly romantic. More dragons please!”
From ALYSON NOEL, New York Times bestselling author of the Immortals and Soul Seekers series:
“Like Lord of the Rings in reverse, with a dash of Ridley Scott's hard-boiled military fun, this swoon-worthy adventure is an original and thrilling escape that will break your heart and make it soar at the same time.”
From JAMES DASHNER, New York Times bestselling author of Maze Runner:
“FROZEN is the perfect mixture of everything I love in a book. It's hard to find the right words to describe how unique, and how fun, it was to read it. Humor, suspense, twists, and above all, originality. I was lost in the fascinating world of Nat and Wes. Highly recommended.”
“Fans of The Hunger Games will no doubt enjoy sinking their teeth into this exciting book.”
“De la Cruz and Johnston score a hit. The action soon accelerates and readers will find themselves completely immersed in the authors’ dangerous world. Lots of fun.”
“Their imaginative vision of the Remaining States of America (RSA) includes polluted oceans that have swallowed entire coasts, ruthless mercenaries, rigid class systems and magic. A dashing young mercenary guides Nat on a journey filled with gangsters, unethical government officials, and danger from every possible source. (For) the writers' many fans or those hungry for yet another post-apocalyptic future.”
“The mix of adventure and fantasy will have you addicted!”
“A one-sitting read. The world-building in Frozen is absolutely addictive. You'll really feel like you're traveling through this frozen, post-apocalyptic country (with) the setting, the realistic characters and the fast pace.”
“The well-paced action is taut, the characters diverse and finely drawn. And while this is a multiple book series, the ending of this first story is fully satisfying and doesn’t leave the reader dangling until the sequel comes out.”
An essay from Melissa de la Cruz:
Our Shared Homeland is Arrakis
The cab driver in San Antonio looks us up and down. With a smirk, he drawls, "You Army?" to my husband. "That how you met?"
I laugh, but inside I am furious at the Miss Saigon stereotype, that we had been mistaken for an American G.I. and his Asian bride. I write novels for teenagers, and we are in town for a library convention. "No," my husband, a bookish architect, answers. "We met in New York."
Truly, we never thought of ourselves as a "mixed race" couple. There were so many couples of similar diversity within our social circle that we had long ago stopped thinking of ourselves as different from each other. We both attended Columbia (he for graduate school, I as an undergraduate), we both thought the perfect Thursday evening was one spent at the "free admission" night at the Met or the Guggenheim, and most importantly, we both loved science fiction and fantasy novels.
As a teenager I devoured all six original "Dune" novels by Frank Herbert, a triumph even among science fiction aficionados, as the books get progressively dense and obscure after the first one. Mike had done the same, and did me one better: he had written a fan letter to the author. He had even received a reply from Random House. It read, "Your author is A) no longer at this publishing house B) unable to return fan mail C) deceased." "Deceased" was circled as Herbert had passed away in 1986, several years before Mike had written him.
Whatever differences we had seemed exotic and only made us more interesting to the other. Mike was from a blue-collar family from Kirtland, Ohio, a rural suburb of Cleveland, where his parents sent all four boys through the local public schools and rarely went on vacation. I had grown up in Manila, where my family had lived luxuriously, with a houseful of servants, chauffeurs and three-month-long European holidays. While my teenage years as an immigrant in San Francisco were distinctly more humble, I clung to the memories of my rarified childhood.
Mike grew up in a house that never locked its doors. I grew up in a house surrounded by armed guards and barbed wire. Weekends meant helping his dad around the house, whereas I only saw my dad on Sundays before his tennis game. His parents never went out to dinner as his mother cooked every meal. My parents owned several restaurants and even at home, had a private chef. His mother made pies from scratch. My mother taught me to plan catering menus.
It didn't seem like it would be a problem when we met. After all, we agreed on all the important things—that Robert Heinlen's "Starship Troopers" was a work of genius, that Isaac Asimov's "Foundation" was the best series ever written, that Piers Anthony's "Xanth" novels went deeper than their shallow light-heartedness. We were fond of both the "Stars Trek" and "Wars." The only point of contention concerned Tolkien's trilogy. I was a staunch resident of Middle-Earth while Mike preferred the "Dragonlance" series, a cheap knockoff in my opinion.
Then, we moved to Los Angeles, bought a house, had a baby, and we no longer agreed on anything. I planned to hire a nanny since my mother had done the same. Mike thought it was scandalous and indulgent as no one in his family had ever hired a caretaker for their children. I was adamant about stretching our housing budget to the limit, as my dad the former financier had taught me the most important part of one's financial arsenal was a solid credit line. "There's no such thing as cash, only leverage." But Mike's parents didn't use credit cards and the thought of carrying such a heavy mortgage caused him many sleepless nights. I reveled in hosting massive parties. Mike preferred a quiet house. I liked to spend; he needed to save.
Our differences, once so innocuous, became a wedge between us. My parents and sister's family had moved to Los Angeles, and as a dutiful Filipino daughter, I assumed we would spend every weekend with my family. Mike felt claustrophobic at the idea and spent Saturdays sitting sullenly in my parents' living room, his annoyance obvious to everyone but me. We hired my father to sell our apartment. We fired my father after he failed to sell it. Then we hired him again after our new real-estate broker tried to talk us into a fraudulent sale wherein the buyer would fix the price in order to scam money from the lender, and give us a kickback. My father finally sold the apartment, but not before feeling wounded at our disloyalty.
It was bruising to realize how truly different we were—in outlook, background, and philosophy. We landed on a therapist's couch two years ago after more than a decade's worth of bickering and resentment. We were convinced we had nothing in common other than our love for our child. Was there anything left to our relationship? There had been so many fights and insults hurled over the years that we could not remember what had drawn us to each other in the first place. We were strangers to each other, firmly entrenched in our separate camps, in the worlds that defined us before we had moved to New York to shed these very identities in the first place.
Therapy helped but it was through writing our fantasy novel that we found our common ground once more. It was a surprise to discover it was easy to talk to each other again, as we adopted a shorthand lingo crafted from our shared knowledge of classic science-fiction and fantasy: "That's sort of Bene Gesserit, isn't it? Maybe our wizard should be more like an Aes Sedai?" or "She's less like a Daenerys and more like an Irulan." or "So it's like the spice mélange, except it doesn't fold time and space." We could crack each other up by just uttering the word "KHAN!" at any given moment.
From there, we began to agree on other things—that maybe it was okay if we didn't visit my family every weekend, and that it was probably a good idea to put aside some money for retirement. That we were lucky to find such a loving caregiver for our daughter, whose employment in our household allowed us both to work.
Some things never change though. He's still trying to get me to read those Dragonlance books. Maybe I should. He might have a point.  —From The Huffington Post

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Frozen 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 53 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wow.  I could stop right there... but I won't.  This is a FANTASTIC read!  I haven't yet read any of de la Cruz's other work, the author of the Blue Bloods series among others.  I am not sure what I was waiting for?!  This is co-authored by her husband, who has, unknown to the world, collaborated on previous works with his wife. The world as we know it has ended, covering the Earth with ice and changing society right along with it.  The world building in this book was amazing, almost but not quite unrecognizable from our own.  Most of the book takes place in New Vegas, the post-apocalyptic Las Vegas.  California and New York have been wiped off the map, as has much of the RSA... the Remaining States of America.  Everything has changed, from society to agriculture to the military to everyday life.  Along with all the changes are the emergence of new forms of humanoid life.  And we all know that human beings do not always react well to that which is different. This book was thoroughly engrossing, from being drawn into the world and drawn to the characters.  Nat is mysterious, but strong, brave, and intelligent.  Wes is tough, loyal, and smart... the perfect foil for Nat.  Each of the members of Wes' team, although generally supporting characters, had a story of their own and illicited feeling, whether affectionate or not.  It was hard sometimes to remember that this is a YA novel.  For example, Wes is only 16 and already a veteran of the army and a man responsible for his team, some of whom are as young as 13 or 14.  One of his enemies is only 19, but there is a mental image of a man much younger than that.  They are all cast into adult roles far earlier than they would be in our own society, with the new world having a much shorter life span than our own.  It is in those moments that you are reminded of their ages that the stark reality of the world of Frozen is really driven home. The world in this book is reflective our own, a world that has been smashed, abused, and changed by the government, the military, religion, humanity, and science to create a new world and society, with ambivalent results.  There are messages in this book.  Messages on the state and values of society, on the capacity for human cruelty in the face of adversity, and messages, too, on the capacity for kindness in the face of adversity.  There was a part that I loved, one that clearly delineated the difference between our society and that of the post-apocalyptic Frozen world: "While they ate, Nat told them that back before the floods, fat was a sign of poverty, and the rich flashed their status by going on extreme diets - juice "cleanses" and spa vacations where they paid for the privilege of not eating.  None of them believed her." Things to love about Frozen...    --The characters.  Whether you loved them, hated them, felt sorry for them, or were annoyed by them, they were each fascinating people with their own histories and stories.    --The world.  There isn't much to love about this world in reality, but it was so well written that you lived there, too, and were a part of the story. Things I wanted more of...    --Shakes.  I loved him, his loyalty, his courage.    --The Slaine brothers.  They seemed so different from each other and I wanted to know more about them. My recommendation:  A fantastic read that you should plan for... you will need a block of time because you won't be able to put it down!
majibookshelf More than 1 year ago
I have to be honest and say that I was very hesitant in starting Frozen for two reasons. The first is that I have read two previous works by Melissa De La Cruz (Au Pairs and Blue Blood series) and really disliked both. The second reason is that some of my trusted blogger friends ended up disliking this book. I take pride in never getting influenced by other people's opinions and ratings when it comes to books but I already had history with this author. Nevertheless, I picked up Frozen and tried to remove any biases I had. Surprisingly, I ended up liking this novel much more than I thought I would. Granted, Frozen is not without any issues and problems, but it was an enjoyable read. The idea behind Frozen was fantastic. I thought a world that has frozen and a time where pirates and slaverers controlled everything outside of the little compound you are supposed to live in is new and intriguing. Of course I'm not for slavery or piratism, but this seemed like new territory when it comes to post apocalyptic/sci-fi novels. Also, the whole phenomena of pollution taking over the world and cities called Garbage Country and trashbergs (equivalent of icebergs but made up of trash) because of the overflow of garbage seemed different. However I do believe, while the concept was brilliant, the execution and progression of the plot had something lacking. Problems were solved too easily. Whenever they are put in a tight situation, the main protagonist and the people with her would easily get out of it scot free. Also, the plot seemed segmented and choppy at times. Especially the ending when a big revelation happened, I personally didn't see it coming because the authors did not give us proper background information or history on the world and the fantasy part of it (the marked and their abilities, the thrillers and their cause, as well as the sylphs).   Towards the end when they reach their destination, I wanted a bit more emotions put into it. I mean, they've just reached the Blue.. that mythical place no one believed existed but all I got were descriptions of the nature I see everyday outside my room window. I think that is another issue I had with the book and that is the lack of emotions between all the characters. The romance was sweet, if not a tiny bit insta-loveish but I did like the friendship between some of the crew that helped the main protagonist, Nat, get to the Blue. I do know I seem to have had a ton of issues with this book but I have to point out again that I did enjoy it. It is one of those books that even with all its faults, you still end up really enjoying it. Definitely recommend it to fans of Melissa De La Cruz as well as adventure novel fans. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this book. It was not what I was expecting at all. I couldn't put it down. The characters were likable, strong, smart & interesting. Best book I've read in awhile!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Fast paced and leaves you waiting for the next book in the series
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Thus book was so good I could not put it doen I finshed it in lesse than three hours
Silverclaw More than 1 year ago
Like most of her books, 'Frozen' was wonderfully unique in its plot line. The characters are fun and their adventures together are page turners. I was glued to the book, I couldn't put it down. Lots of adventure and humor. If you are looking for something different this is the book you want!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Awesome book. Great read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have a lot of questions. Does nikki move schools permanantely? Do her and brandon become official? Do nikki and mackenzie become friends? What happens to chloe and zoey? And feel free to just tell me about the whole book if you dont mine. Thank you :)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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bookharpy More than 1 year ago
A very new edgy story on a not so new concept. The world is a wasteland after decades of pollution and corruption to the Earth, and the weather is always arctic cold with subzero temperatures. In this world exist species of human-like people such as drau, marked and sylphs who have different abilities such as telekinesis, mind reading, pyrotechnic powers and so on. The story however focuses on Natasha Kestal, a marked girl with hazy memories of her past. She hears a voice in her head that tells her what she should do and she finally decides to listen and let it lead her to the Blue, a portal like entrance to a world that is lush and healthy. With the help of Wes and his team, Nat makes her was across the toxic, chemical laden ocean to find the blue. But along the way, they will face danger, betrayal and unexpected allies they never expected. I really enjoyed this book. Not exactly stellar or my favorite of the year so far, but a great fantastical twist on what the future could hold.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I tried to like this book. Great premise but just not executed well. The book spends most of the time trying to build up this fight but then it goes "bam I am all powerful and you stuck" In six pages. Very Mery sue. You really never care about the characters and the interactions are forced. It started out great but them felt like I was talking to my six year old niece. Constantly berated with information and no explanation.
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Kaylexanna More than 1 year ago
Frozen was a really, really weird book. It has really (intentionally) odd punctuation, and capitalization, and in the end, I just couldn't really get past that. I loved the idea of the world and I wanted to know a lot more about it, but I couldn't get into the characters. I really tried to get past the capitalization and stuff, but I had a REALLY hard time with it. It really annoyed me that I couldn't seem to find a pattern or reason to it, and that kind of preoccupied me for a lot of the book. So while I tried not to let it affect my rating, it did in the end. I found it so distracting that I had a hard time focusing on the story. I did enjoy the story (what I could focus on), and the world, as I mentioned before, but didn't care for the characters much, and I'm a person who generally needs to care about characters to enjoy the story, so that was a pretty major problem for me, but I did enjoy what was there enough to want to continue the series in the future. Overall, I enjoyed where the story took me, though I was MAJORLY disappointed about one thing toward the end, something I thought could have been a really interesting twist, but then I was let down... a lot. :( Another issue I had was that I kept forgetting the book was intended for a YA audience, not because of the writing or anything like that, but because I kept forgetting that the characters are supposed to be 15-17 years old, for the most part. I... did not buy that, at all. They act like teenagers at times, but most of the time, I didn't feel like the characters were teens at all. Maybe that's part of the point, that the world being the way it is forced them to grow up, but every time that was brought up I was kind of thrown for a loop. Definitely could have done without that, lol. I wanted a bit more background on Nat and Wes, and how the world came to be the way it is in the book, but hopefully we'll get more of that in future installments in the series. (I received a copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Frozen by Melissa De LA Cruze is a great book. It takes place in new vegas after it has been in a frozen lockdown for several years. Natasha one of the main characters is working as a black jack dealer at a rowdy casino in New vegas. Nat is part of the marked group. The marked group is often feared because of their special forceful power The government of the united states put all the “marked group”in an institution where they are being kept, but nat being the tough girl she is breaks out and that is why she is in New vegas now. She is always afraid of being Caught and cant stand being on her toes all the time so she makes a decision to go to what is called blue paradise where she doesn’t have to worry about being caught. To get to the blue paradise is one of the hardest things she has ever incountered it is thousands of miles away. So tohelp her get there she hires ryan wes but they call  him wes. He is also traveling with a group of pirates  so nat is sure that she will get there. The blue paradise is a whole ocean away witch would be no problem accept for the ocean is ahalf frozen so half way across it she is forced to abandon her ship and endure the harsh weather. During this time her and wes make a connection that neither one of them wants to admit but in time there connection grows to strong to deny and they finale realize it right whenever they make it to the blue paradise
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Sorry it took so long look at the next res.
ToManyBooksNotEnoughTime More than 1 year ago
Inexplicably Entertaining I would like to thank Orchard Books and NetGalley for granting me a copy of this e-book to read in exchange for an honest review. Though I received this e-book for free that in no way impacts my review. Goodreads Blurb: "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." A heady mixture of action, fantasy, and a realistic dystopian future, all combined with the sweet thrill of emotional confusion, this story seems to have something for everyone. Nat is one of those people who is far more than she appears to be on the surface; yet even she doesn't know who, or what, she truly is. In a land of martial control, freezing temperatures, and the complete loss of new technological advances, there are essentially two types of people - those that are prey and those that are predators. Yet somehow in this dystopian world lives a third type of person, known as 'the marked.' These people all have two things that make them stand out from the rest - they have a physical mark of some sort, and they don't have the traditional brown eyes. Nat is one of the marked. After escaping a terrible childhood Nat has been listening to her inner voice, a voice that helped her make her escape relatively unscathed. But she's afraid of her inner voice, because it doesn't sound at all like her. So whose voice is she hearing? Her desperation to find the mythical land known as 'the Blue,' a land like theirs used to be - where the yellow sun shines, and plants and animals grow everywhere, where grass grows on the ground (all things she's only ever heard of, or read about in the ancient books) - all this has Nat taking the largest risk of her life. She is going to become a jumper, a pilgrim. And for that she needs to hire a runner and pray that she gets an honest one. This is basically where Wes, Shakes, and team enter in force. Every member of Wes' team is a unique character, and all well crafted, demonstrating their quirks, as well as their personality flaws and strengths. While Wes and Shakes are the dominant figures amongst the crew of runners, all of the other crew members are three-dimensional. As with the action, the characters show who they are, making me feel as if I was right there with them instead of sitting somewhere reading about them - a true testament to the abilities of both authors. In the beginning the relationship between Nat and Wes is rocky at best. Yet they both feel drawn toward each other for an unknown reason. A feeling they both do their best to resist, though for different reasons. Watching their relationship unfold is like finding a flower growing in the middle of a concrete parking lot, beautiful, stubborn, and inexplicable. Pay attention to their relationship, for something happens during the climb to the story's peak that could be very important for the future development of this story overall. It certainly surprised me, and I've been wondering about it ever since. As the characters' personalities became more familiar to me, the pacing of the action also increases. The development of the story is well tied together, with characters and arc of the story dependent upon one another. True to form for an action-packed story, the peak is reached at the end, leaving us with a cliffhanger ending. Though violent, nevertheless the ending left me primed and ready for the next book in the series!
bookbingerlady More than 1 year ago
In the book, Frozen (Heart of Dread#1), the United States has suffered a massive environmental catastrophe. Massive floods have transformed the landscape. Trash has turned the ocean toxic and filled it with giant islands of trash. Now, the U.S. is called the Remaining States of America (RSA) and is ruled like an iron curtain country. The population has changed as well. Cancer has killed anyone over the age of 50. Most people can't read or operate old technology. In addition, there is a new type of human called the “marked”. The marked have magical abilities and some can be identified by their unique eye color. The military hunts and imprisons the marked to use them as weapons. The two main characters, Natasha Kestral and Ryan Wesson, live in New Vegas, which has transformed into the arctic. Sixteen year old Nat is marked and is hiding in Vegas, working as a dealer in a casino. A voice in her head insists she travel to the Blue, a land lush and green and filled with wildlife. To do this, she will need a runner to smuggle her outside of the city and then get her across the polluted ocean. Sixteen year old Wes, also lives in Vegas, and makes money any way he can to support his crew, whether as a soldier, con artist, or runner. Wes and his team agree to take Nat to the Blue for the money and so they all embark on a dangerous long journey where they are hunted by soldiers, pirates, and slave traders. Pros Of the two main characters, Wes appeals to me the most. He reminds me of Hans Solo from Star Wars, charming but with a pirate’s heart. He has learned to harden his heart to others in need because his people come first. However, you see he has a caring nature. He worries about the welfare of his team, supplying them with food and money. Some of the soldiers view this as a weakness and call him soft. The romance between Wes and Nat builds slowly, which is believable given their circumstances. Wes demonstrates how much he cares for Nat by constantly putting himself in danger to protect her making him a swoon-worthy hero. It will be interesting to see what happens between them in the next book. Cons Unlike Wes, it was difficult for me to get to know Nat’s character because the story didn't provide you with much information. I would have liked to see more of her personality come through so that I could have connected to her. In addition, I would have liked to know what triggered the environmental catastrophe. This was never really explained. Conclusion The detailed world building and fast-paced story sets the stage for the series. This book should appeal to sci-fi and paranormal fans.
MorrisMorgan More than 1 year ago
When I began “Heart of Dread: Frozen”, I thought I was going to be reading a somewhat typical dystopian novel.  Boy, was I ever wrong.  It is impossible to place it in one, or even two, categories.  Finally, I decided to go with dystopian, apocalyptic, and fantasy.  There is an even amount of all of them. This novel is a wild ride right from the start, alternating between third person points of view focusing on two flawed, mysterious, and very different individuals. We have Wes, the mercenary, and Nat, the girl with a secret.  Their backstories are revealed very slowly, and combined with the action, it makes it difficult to put down. If I describe any of the plot that is not already included in the synopsis above, I run the risk of spoiling a surprise, and that would take away from the fun. And if nothing else, this is one fun book.  Anything that could possibly be included in it is, and the ending was a cliffhanger that has me upset that I need to wait a few months for the next. I normally try to avoid fandom-speak in my reviews, but my thoughts can be summed up by this:  “I didn’t mean to ship it this hard.” This review is based on a complimentary copy provided by Hatchette Children’s Books in exchange for an honest review.
Thoughts_and_Pens More than 1 year ago
What kind of ritual did the authors do to get this awful book published? Actual rating: ZERO stars I should have listened to Queen Elsa’s Let It Go when I was reading this dreadful book because as I went deeper, the story just got crazier (in the most negative way possible). I should have let it go when I was still at 30% because it was the most terrible book I’ve read after Journey to Rainbow Island. The only redeeming quality that Frozen has is that it was so ridiculous I could not stop myself from laughing every time I turn a page. What ever happened to the saying that two heads are better than one? Apparently, that is not usually the case as clearly demonstrated by this book. Two authors and what? A hogwash story set in a nonsensical and full-of-inconsistencies world. Where should I begin with this review? Okay, let me consult my Goodreads reading status updates and my mobile phone because I swear, this book made me so industrious in writing a lot of notes which I normally don’t do whenever I am reading. First things first, let me make a brief summary of this book. In Frozen, the world is in ruins because of the Great Wars, Black Floods, and The Big Freeze. Obviously, after the occurrence of the latter, everything got covered in ice. And then, due to some unexplained miracle, magical creatures started appearing from the ice as if they are the goddess Venus (who was born from sea foam) themselves. But despite the said catastrophes, Las Vegas was still able to survive but not without its costs. Now, the mentioned magical creatures are actually being hunted by the government because uhm, well, the book forgot to explain it clearly. Anyway, just roll with it. So our heroine, Nat/Natasha, is a magical creature pretending to be a blackjack dealer but all the while plotting to go to the Blue. To the majority, the Blue is a fabled land believed to be pristine and the salvation of those who wanted to experience the world before the catastrophes. One of the first questions that popped up in my mind was this: When is Frozen’s story set? In 2020? In 2100? In year 3000? Apparently, the authors forgot to mention that very unimportant detail. So what does a reader should do? Take things at face value? Or make a hypothesis through deduction? I did the latter and so my quest started. I took down notes of possible evidences that will clue me in as to when the story happened. So the quest started. In Frozen, the citizens are still using Hummers, Porsches, and Bentleys as a means of transport. The story explained that the citizens were innovative enough to salvage some of the machineries from the world before and make it work. And yay, they still have drag races and casinos despite all what happened! But the surprising thing is that they really don’t have an idea as to how the world worked before the catastrophes happened and their little knowledge of the world-before was acquired from the videos that the existing citizens managed to save and pass them from generation to generation. So what does this mean? Since Nat and all the characters of this book still know how to drive Hummers, Porsches, Bentleys and gamble, they couldn’t be so far off from the last generation that experienced the world-before. So one can say that Frozen happened during the 2050s to 2200s. But then, that couldn’t be right because later into the book, it was revealed that Chernobyl in Ukraine is already thriving with life. What nonsense is this? “When she (Nat) was still in school, she’d learned about a town in Ukraine called Chernobyl, where a nuclear reactor had exploded. The place was so radioactive that it wouldn’t be fit for humans for hundreds of years (are you sure?) and it was still off-limits now. The whole area was declared an exclusion zone, an evacuated land where no one was allowed to live. In reality, though, the Chernobyl exclusion zone TEEMED WITH LIFE.” ARC p.116  Authors, I don’t mean any disrespect but here’s a fact: The isotopes that were released from that nuclear explosion will remain radioactive for THOUSANDS of years and not just hundreds. To be specific, these isotopes are from uranium and plutonium that have half lives of thousands of years. The director of the Chernobyl power plant, Ihor Gramotkin even said that it will take ~20,000 years for the place to become habitable again. If we consider that figure to estimate when the story of Frozen took place, we are looking at year 22, 000 and beyond. Will there still be Hummers, Bentleys, and Porsches, and casinos during that time after such devastating catastrophes? And in between those periods, I am pretty sure that there will be other batches of calamities that will struck the world that will either render humanity to evolve or fully eliminated. But you haven’t seen it all yet. I am greatly astounded with the authors’ devotion to this story. Aside from the expensive vehicles, the world of Frozen is also experiencing extreme shortage of resources. The value of salt increased to the point that it’s as important as fuel. One crystal of salt is enough to buy a ship. Really? Should I go now and hoard sacks of salt because apparently, it will save my ass when the apocalypse comes. And oh, did you know that water also became an extremely rare resource? Extremely rare like only the filthy rich can afford it. And thus, the majority of the ultra-stupid population were forced to drink this substance called Nutri. “Clean water was precious but synthetics were cheap and sanitary, so like most solid citizens, her only choice was to drink Nutri, a supposedly vitamin-and-nutrient-rich, sweet tasting concoction that was spiked with faint traces of mood stabilizers, just the thing to keep the population obedient. The chemicals gave her a headache, and more than anything, she just wanted a taste of pure, clear water. Once a week, she saved up enough for a glass, savoring every drop.” ARC p.46  Question, the community has enough resources to create Nutri and load it with vitamins and mood stabilizers, why not allocate such resources to melt, purify and sanitize ice (the world is covered in ice, remember?)? For sure, the process of melting, purifying and sanitizing ice is cheaper compared to creating Nutri and does not take a lot of brain powers, isn’t it? Even a 10 year old can figure such a thing. Just when I thought that the book is already done with making a fool out of me, it introduced me to this language called “textlish.” Because of what happened, the people have found no valid reason to learn to read anymore. Formal language was replaced with textlish which can be described as a high form of Jejemon. If you are a Filipino, you already have an idea what textlish is. Here’s an example of English words and phrases converted to textlish: Love =<3 LOL= Lulz I miss you= iMiszqcKyuH You= yuHh If you want to be a master of textlish, just keep on practicing by txtng ur fwendz ucng ol dos oful nd phakng shrtctz. I could go on and on pointing out all the stupid things about this book but I don’t think I still have the strength to continue with this review. There’s absolutely no redeeming quality about this drivel. The main characters and all the other fools are brimming with contradictions that I can’t help but hope that they all die from the cold. Don’t even ask me about the magical creatures because of thrillers (zombies inspired from Michael Jackson's Thriller). OMG! Are the authors trying to make a hybrid between George Martin’s Whitewalkers and Michael Jackson’s thriller zombies? And that’s when I lose it. The plot is also saturated with various plot devices including the dreaded deus ex machina. O stars because not even the laughs can save this book from getting a permanent spot on my hated-books list.
Carnival_Lights More than 1 year ago
Frozen, written by husband and wife Michael Johnston and Melissa De La Cruz, is a dystopian novel that takes place after the Earth is frozen over. Somehow people are still finding ways to not only survive, but thrive. Those who are slave traders possess great power. Natasha Kestal, or "Nat", has found a way to survive by becoming a blackjack dealer in New Vegas, or what used to be Las Vegas. However, Nat is looking for a way out. She harbors a secret that will inevitably be the cause of her demise. There is supposedly a mythical land called "the Blue" where nothing is frozen and everything is like it was before the big freeze. Ryan Wesson, or "Wes" is a runner and leader of a team of untrained mercenaries. He and his gang agree to lead Nat to the Blue for the huge amount of money that she stole from work. Together the group must fight their way across the ocean and battle slave traders, with an unexpected obstacle. Wes and Nat both feel a spark that connects them together. They have to either contain it, or use it to their advantage. This novel is without a doubt worth reading. Two sixteen year olds meet, but they are the opposite of typical. The story has the effect that literature always has when written in third person, with just the right amount of secrecy, betrayal, magic, and romance. I would recommend it to anyone and would definitely read it again.
Sailon More than 1 year ago
Frozen is based in an incredibly dark dystopian world. The descriptions of this world makes it just come alive in the storyline.  Action intense, with lots of highly unorthodox plot twists and turns, the characters face zombies, pirates, military forces, betrayal and dangers from deep below the dark ocean waters. That being said, the story fell flat for me. I could enjoy the idea of the story but didn't feel any character connections and felt some of the plot directions, well they just seems way out there. I did however totally love the world that was created and the entire premises behind this world. Frozen is a story of magic, monsters and mayhem and is sure to delight many dystopian fans.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I think that this book would be warning to people who ACTUALLY care that our world might someday become the world in this book and water could be SO rare for us too. Think about a purpose of this book that is important to Earth....
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
WaterWorld meets Avatar meets Hunger Games. Nice book. Enjoyable. Looking forward to the next on the series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Ok ok no need to badmouth