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Monday, June 2, 2014

[BLOG TOUR] NICOLE'S REVIEW: The Polaris Uprising by Jennifer Ibarra

Title: The Polaris Uprising
Author: Jennifer Ibarra
Format Acquired: epub
Publication Date: October 20 2013
Publishing House: Tiwala Books
ISBN: 9780989499200
Source of Copy: Pinoy Book Tours


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 mut 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.

(Image and information courtesy of Goodreads;)


In seven years Ryla will take her father's place as President of Neress. Until then, she's supposed to ready herself to ascend with meetings upon meetings and press conferences and lessons with her tutor. That is until she meets her tutor's son and he opens her eyes to the truth about their seemingly perfect society. No citizen shall be left behind. That could not be farther from the truth.

One thing I liked about The Polaris Uprising was the dynamic between Ryla and her sister Alanna. It was obvious that they could not be more different but their love for each other was obvious. Ryla was her father's chosen, the more outgoing of the two. Alanna, despite being the elder sister, was deemed unfit to succeed. It didn't seem to cause any strife between the two sisters but it was pretty obvious Alanna wondered why she wasn't worthy and yearned for her father's acceptance. Polaris Uprising is told in dual POV and it was interesting to get into their heads although I have to admit that I preferred Ryla. She was spunkier and more reckless.

Let's not forget the romance, Alanna was betrothed to Owen, son of the security minister. They've known each other since they were children and I found their romance rather boring.  I mean Owen was cute and rather charming but it just didn't work for me. They might be betrothed but Alanna was oh so lucky to actually feel something for her future husband. Ryla, on the other hand, fell for her tutor's son Tyson. Their romance was too fast and Tyson, despite being anti-government got over his prejudices fast stating that Ryla was different from other government cronies. 

I wasn't too fond of the pacing, everything just seemed to happen so fast. And I get that it's war and time is of the essence but left and right people were making snap judgments. Where was the strategic planning? And Ryla joining the rebellion? Done on a whim. Oh she saw her father's grievances against the people, saw the lies their precious Neress was built upon and bam! The rebellion got the President's daughter on board. Instant spy. It was messy and not well thought of, it lacked planning, but I suppose Ryla is still a teenager and bound to be a little rash. 

As for Alanna? She was quick to defend their father, unwilling to open her eyes like her sister. Maybe it was because she has always wanted her father's acceptance. Maybe she was too afraid. But she was quick to reprimand Ryla without hearing her through. (Why Ryla insists on keeping her father's secrets is beyond me). But I suppose it's all politics and it's not surprising at all that they ended up on opposite sides of a war with secrets left unsaid between them.

I'm okay with character death, I approve of it actually, but for this book? What was the point? (And no, I won't tell you guys who died.) Was it to push Ryla to finally choose a side to fight for? As if the death toll wasn't high enough.

The Polaris Uprising is all in all a good book. Decent characters, sufficient action, and a little romance to top it all of. I'd recommend it for those who want a quick dystopian read and I might read the next book. A little sibling rivalry is always interesting, especially when they're fighting a war on opposite ends. I especially can't help but think Alanna has always wanted to be President. But that's probably just me.



  1. Thanks for the honest review. I've been curious about this one myself.

  2. Your review just pushed me to read this book soon. Now I regret signing up for a guest post instead of a review...HAHA!

  3. I haven't heard much about this until now. Like you, I don't mind if an author kills off characters, but I don't like it to feel forced

    Mands @ The Bookish Manicurist