Publication: October 30th 2013 by Tiwala Books
Series: Polaris #1
Genres: Young Adult, Dystopian
No citizen shall be left behind.
Life in Neress is simple. For nearly four decades, people have known exactly what’s expected of them. Obey the rules, follow the path that’s been laid out, and everything will be provided for: food, shelter, education, safety. No need goes unmet.
But the cost is steep: you lose all rights to make your own choices in life.
In seven years, eighteen-year-old Ryla Jensen will come of age and take over for her father as president of this idyllic nation. Groomed since childhood to take on a role she’s not even sure she wants, Ryla’s only escape from the pressures of duty is her sister, Alanna. But when her eyes are finally opened to the oppressive regime her father built, she begins to question everything she’s set to inherit—and finds herself at odds with her sister’s blind allegiance to their father.
Torn between loyalty to her family and the fight for freedom, Ryla must decide just how far she’s willing to go to make a stand and risk losing the person she loves most in the world: Alanna.
It’s Frozen (minus the musical numbers) meets Matched by Ally Condie in this exciting new dystopian novel by Jennifer Ibarra.
What stood out for me here — as many reviewers have mentioned — is the heartfelt relationship between sisters Ryla and Alanna Jensen. And yes, it does remind me of Anna and Elsa’s relationship from Frozen. Also, I’m trying my hardest not to insert any Frozen reference or break out into song. Do you want to build an dystopian…
Moving on, I thought the portrayal of their relationship was well-done. Not many YA novels out there take the time to explore the depth of sibling relationships like Polaris Uprising does. With that, I commend Miss Ibarra.
The book isn’t big on romance, but it does play a significant role for the main characters particularly Alanna. I thought Owen and Alanna’s relationship was awfully sweet, and the build-up was nice. Even though they’ve been engaged for practically their whole lives, there’s still a lingering awkwardness between them. They didn’t pawed at each other when they reunited.
The initial problem I had with Polaris Uprising is its pacing. It was pretty slow for my taste. But to remedy that, the action scenes were very exciting. It reminded me a bit of the ones in Marie Lu’s Legend.
The ending was a What-The-Heck-Just-Happened moment for me.
Something shocking happened that I still refuse to believe. If you’ve already read the book, then you’ll probably know what that is and maybe we can form a support group, yes? I also loved the tension brewing between the two sisters even though it breaks my heart. Especially after reading this line.
Just look up in the sky and find the brightest star and that’s where I’ll be looking too.
The Polaris Uprising is a breakthrough. It’s one of the few well-written YA dystopians out there. Jennifer Ibarra is definitely on my Authors-to-Watch list. I strongly urge you all to read this book. Then maybe we can discuss it over tea someday.
P.S. I’m also opting for a support group.
About the Author.
Jennifer Ibarra grew up on a steady diet of books, Star Wars, and other fantastic feats of the imagination. Her debut novel, The Polaris Uprising, is the first book in a trilogy and mixes dystopia with family drama, romance, and political intrigue.
She lives in Silicon Valley, where she does marketing for a tech company and spends her time running, cooking, baking, and keeping up with celebrity gossip.
A message from the author:
Cancer has touched all of us in one way or another. Those who have read THE POLARIS UPRISING will know that I dedicated it to my dear friend, Brittanie, whom we lost to Stage IV ovarian cancer in 2010. She was only 26 years old. In her memory, I am pledging to donate $1 out of every sale on Amazon and Barnes & Noble to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society from now until October 6–the day she was diagnosed with the disease that took her life. Every donation up to $2,000 will be matched by my employer, so your generosity will be doubled! Thank you in advance for helping me in this special cause.