January 15, 2013

Review of Article 5 by Kristen Simmons

New York, Los Angeles, and Washington, D.C., have been abandoned.

The Bill of Rights has been revoked, and replaced with the Moral Statutes.

There are no more police—instead, there are soldiers. There are no more fines for bad behavior—instead, there are arrests, trials, and maybe worse. People who get arrested usually don’t come back.

Seventeen-year-old Ember Miller is old enough to remember that things weren’t always this way. Living with her rebellious single mother, it’s hard for her to forget that people weren’t always arrested for reading the wrong books or staying out after dark. It’s hard to forget that life in the United States used to be different.

Ember has perfected the art of keeping a low profile. She knows how to get the things she needs, like food stamps and hand-me-down clothes, and how to pass the random home inspections by the military. Her life is as close to peaceful as circumstances allow.

That is, until her mother is arrested for noncompliance with Article 5 of the Moral Statutes. And one of the arresting officers is none other than Chase Jennings—the only boy Ember has ever loved.

add to goodreadsArticle 5 by Kristen Simmons
Publication Date:  January 31, 2012
Publisher:  Tor Teen

Available for Purchase:
amazon | B&N | TBD | indiebound

A fan made book trailer.  Pretty good too!
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MaryAnn NewWhile reading Article 5 by Kristen Simmons, I was brought back to a reality in our world that still shocks me to this day.  World War II, where the Jewish people are being oppressed by the Germans.  The details in this book can easily be relatable to this heinous time where Jewish people in Europe are doing whatever they can to simply survive.

Such is the tale told in Article 5.  But in the world created by author, Kristen Simmons, the concentration camps are replaced with Rehabilitation Centres.  Where the Nazi’s are replaced with the Moral Militia, military officers whose sole reason for existing is to enforce people to abide by the Moral Statues.  Those who are found guilty of not abiding by the moral Statues are gathered up and shipped away to Rehab facilities where they will begin their stint at rehabilitating them and become model citizens.

In Article 5, America is not a place where freedom is celebrated.  After being attacked, and suffering much loss and retaliation, America is now a place where everyone fears for their lives.  Those who are found guilty of not abiding by a Moral Statute, and who have managed to not be captured by the Moral Militia, are on the run.  Hiding, scavenging, trying to get to a place of safety where there are people who are brave enough to stand up to the ridiculous standards set forth by the Federal Bureau of Reformation.

Seventeen year old, Ember Miller has had her fair share of dealings with the Moral Militia.  With a mother who seems to continuously harbor illegal things, such as romance novels, magazines, and the like, they have gotten tickets for breaking the rules.  But one day, after coming home from school, the knock on the door is not what she or her mother expect.  Instead of getting a citation, they are being hauled away and separated for breaking Article 5 – having a child out of wedlock.  In the eyes of this new law, Ember’s mother has broken the law by having Ember, and Ember has broken the law by simply existing.

When things can’t get any worse, one of the officers who has come to take them away is her former love, Chase Jennings.  No longer the sweet boy next door that she had given her heart to.  Instead, he is the very thing that she has come to hate.  A soldier of the FBR.  And none of her pleading or cries for help has Chase step forward to protect both her and her mother.

Hauled off to a Rehab facilities where a uniform is mandatory, the soldiers are cold and uncaring, and the headmistress is a raving heartless bitch, Ember can only focus on one thing…get out and find her mother…and Ember finds friendship and help in a way that she never even imagined would be possible.

Article 5 was a non-stop adrenaline ride.  You don’t know who to trust or where to turn to.  You are continuously watching Ember fend for her life and try to get to her main goal…her mother.   I was completely swept away in this world of discrimination.  I felt as though I was with Ember in her journey to get to her mother, and to safety.  The world building found within the pages were so believable and scary.  It reminded me a little bit of the movie The Road (which I could not finish because I freaked myself out), where every chance encounter could be your last.  When your world is ending, crazies start appearing, and Article 5 did have its crazy moments.

My one complaint is the main character Ember.  I understand her need to survive, her desire to get to her mother above all else…but seriously, if you are with someone that actually knows how to survive and fend off the crazies…wouldn’t you stick with them until you are actually at a place of safety?  Why would you take off, or continue to think of taking off?  Stop thinking about it, stop with the inner monologue about how you can do it yourself and accept the help that is standing in front of you.  Argh!  She frustrated me so much!

On the flip side, I am officially in love with Chase Jennings.  Everything he does, he says, little gestures had me awwwing and smirking all over the place.  And as if Ember had a problem with that!  Seriously!  I really appreciated the emotions that were pouring out of the book.  It was heartbreaking to see what Ember has to go through, and equally heartbreaking to watch the story of Ember and Chase unfold.

I really loved the flipping back and forth of the past to the present.  It really helped get into the head of the characters in the book and bring you closer to their pasts and understand the inner turmoil’s even more.

All in all, a very addictive read that will take you on a nonstop ride.  I could not put this one down, and totally and completely devoured it, regardless of my annoyance with Ember.  Such a powerful read, and I, for one, am so excited to start the next installment to this series!  I can’t wait to see what will happen and the their plans for freedom will be foiled by the enemy.

About the Author:


Kristen Simmons has a master’s degree in social work and is an advocate for mental health. She loves Jazzercise, her husband, and her precious greyhound, Rudy. Also chocolate. She currently lives in Tampa, Florida.

Connect with the Author:  Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads


  1. Ashley

    GREAT review! I loved this book too! And I completely agree with yoru point about Ember. I got super annoyed when she tried to run away too >_<

    Still an amazing book though!!

  2. Raina

    Great review! I’m shifting Article 5 closer to the top of my TBR shelf.


  3. Helen

    Oh my goodness – this book sounds so intense! I hadn’t read any other reviews about this one, so I’m now really excited to add this one to the TBR pile! It sounds like a thriller and a heart breaker – I love those :) Thanks for the incredible review! :)

  4. Sophia Rose

    This does sound like a powerful read. Thank you for sharing.

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