Monday, March 25, 2013

Review: Breaking Point by Kristen Simmons

Book Description via the Jacket Flap:

Hardcover, 398 pages
February 12, 2013, Tor Teen

After faking their deaths to escape from prison, Ember Miller and Chase Jennings have only one goal: to lie low until the Federal Bureau of Reformation forgets they ever existed.

Near celebrities now for the increasingly sensationalized tales of their struggles with the government, Ember and Chase are recognized and taken in by the Resistance – an underground organization working to systematically bring down the government, At headquarters, all eyes are on the sniper, an anonymous assassin taking out FBR soldiers one by one. Rumors are flying about the sniper’s true identity, and Ember and Chase welcome the diversion…

Until the government posts its most-wanted list, and their number-one suspect is Ember herself.

Orders are “shoot to kill,” and soldiers are cleared to fire on suspicion alone.

Suddenly Ember can’t even step onto the street without fear of being recognized, and “lying low” is a joke. Even members of the Resistance are starting to look at her sideways.

With Chase urging her to run, Ember must decide: Go into hiding…or fight back?

Source: Alexis + Tor Teen (Thank you!)

Warning: This might be a bit spoilery for people who haven’t read Article 5 yet. But I don't reveal anything spoilery or crucial about Breaking Point in this review.

My Thoughts:

The ending of Article 5 left me hungry for more. Incredibly realistic, tragic and heartbreaking, it broke my heart in more ways than one. Article 5 tore my chest open and left a gaping hole there. Breaking Point was the cure to that gaping hole. I felt that so many things were righted in the second installment.

Ember and Chase were now part of the resistance. They were a ‘family’ but this doesn’t mean that assimilation into the group was smooth. In fact, things were a bit rough inside the Wayland Inn, the headquarters of the resistance. The other members like Riggins and company gave her a hard time. But after the FBR posted their most-wanted list and Ember lands number one, things changed.

I was emotionally attached to Ember ever since Article 5. Seeing her grow from the girl that she was in the first book to the brave woman that she was in now only strengthened my attachment to her. Emotionally scarred, physically exhausted and in mourning, Ember was down. But she was a trooper; she moved and made a difference in her own way. Although there were secrets up Ember’s sleeve, she had a good heart and equally good intentions.

Chase, the gorgeous and protective ex-soldier, was a constant in Ember’s life. Trying so hard to make up for what he couldn’t do, I felt for him. His good side and bad side warred in Article 5 but in Breaking Point, each side complimented each other until finally, the old Chase – Ember’s Chase – broke through the surface. His sweetness and protectiveness were strong attributes that made me melt.

Chase and Ember’s relationship was strained because of the death of Ember’s mom, which weighed down on both of them. This strain made them suffer in a dualistic way: Ember loved Chase but every time she would see him, she was reminded of her mother’s death while Chase loved Ember back, every time he would see her, he was reminded of the death of Ember’s mom and the horrible instance that he could’ve stopped if only he had done more. I appreciate how the intense emotional burden of these two characters was manifested in the book. It was like two pulsing waves of energy that blended together. Ember and Chase were hurting, flawed and struggling with their past and mistakes. Though there was little physical manifestation of the romance, it was palpable. I felt it even if the two were playing tug-of-war with their emotions. And that in itself is one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever experienced as a reader.

The action definitely leveled up. The story world and society in Breaking Point is crueler, tougher and all the more challenging. I was hungry for the action and suspense, which were done well. Just like in Article 5, I was hooked from the start. The struggles of all the characters and the stories of their lives really got to me. As they dug deeper and deeper into the heart of the rebellion, they were transforming from mere people who don’t agree with the MM to representatives of the people who fight back. In a way, they give hope, what little of it they can give, to the people. Their struggle and their transformation is the whole point of the story and not the romance.

Breaking Point is heart-wrenchingly good with its story, heart-pounding in its action and suspense, and heartbreakingly beautiful with its characters. If you are a dystopian enthusiast, and I mean, a person who is really, truly reading dystopia not just for the romance BUT for the action, the struggle and the suspense parts…then this series is for you. I highly recommend it.


5 Cupids = Eternal book love.
I will never, ever, ever forget this book. I highly recommend this!


  1. I just ordered this from Barnes and Noble yesterday! Loved Article 5. You do a great job of letting readers know that the romance is not the main focus. That's what I loved about the first one...the sexual tension was there among all the action. The action and suspense are the hooks in this series.
    Great insights. Like the pulsing waves line:)

  2. Like you, I absolutely LOVED the first book and I'm dying to read this sequel. So I'm really, really glad it lived up to your expectations. Hope it does the same for me! Great review!