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Everything changed on The Day. The Day was when hearts stopped beating. The Day was when the electricity went out. The Day was when they came, the Lords from the sky. Most importantly, the Day was when 13 Icons fell from the heavens and landed in the most populous cities on the earth, effectively wiping out nearly a billion people. The Day was when the war was lost with no hope to fight back.

"ICONS is a great escape read for the summer, and try not to be too upset when have to wait for the next one."

Dol was just a baby when the Icons landed and wiped out her family, but beyond that painful memory, she remembers nothing else but a life in the Grasslands. The Grasslands are a safe haven of sorts on the outskirts of the Silent City with no electricity, no watchful eye of the Icon and most importantly, little to no intrusion by the Embassy to the Lords. Dol’s closest friend, Ro, is also in the Grasslands, and together they have a unique bond. On the inside of Dol’s wrist is one small gray dot while on the inside of Ro’s wrist are two red dots, the color of fire. These dots mark their destiny as ones born with unique emotional powers that set them apart from regular humans.

Dol finds this out the hard way once she is captured by the Embassy. After a failed rescue attempt by Ro, Dol soon learns that she and Ro are not the only ones with special powers. At the Embassy, Dol and Ro meet Tima, a girl with three dots and known as The Freak, one who feeds on fear. Tima is immediately suspicious of Dol and Ro, especially when Dol takes an interest in the boy with four dots on his wrist, Lucas, who can channel the emotion of love and convince people to do things against their will. Lucas also happens to be the son of the ambassador to the Lords, and the ambassador is more interested in keeping the peace than letting four teenagers with special powers fight back.

There is no choice, however, but to fight back. The Lords are making mysterious plans that involve the construction of something powerful, and unless Dol, Ro, Tima and Lucas do something about it, hope for humanity’s survival is all but lost. For it is only Dol, Ro, Tima and Lucas who can get close enough to an Icon in order to destroy it. The Lords have wreaked too much destruction on the earth, though, to let four unusual teenagers get in their way. The resistance has just begun, and it’s going to take everyone working together to succeed.

ICONS is an excellent start to something much bigger. The Lords and the Icons are so shrouded in mystery at this point that just when you feel like you are getting a grasp of what it all means, who they are and earth’s role in their arrival, the book ends with you wanting much more. The same can be said for the four teenagers with such unusual powers that they seem only to just be learning about. ICONS is a great escape read for the summer, and try not to be too upset when have to wait for the next one.

Reviewed by Benjamin Boche on May 23, 2013

by Margaret Stohl

  • Publication Date: May 7, 2013
  • Genres: Young Adult 12+
  • Hardcover: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
  • ISBN-10: 0316205184
  • ISBN-13: 9780316205184