You Read What? Book Review: Icons

There might be some spoilers. Proceed with caution.

Author: Margaret Stohl

Publisher: Hachette Book Group

  • Imprint: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

Date Published: May 7th 2013

Format: ARC (Advance Reader’s Copy). Paperback

Source: Hachette Canada for an honest review


Your heart beats only with their permission.

Everything changed on The Day. The day the windows shattered. The day the power stopped. The day Dol’s family dropped dead. The day Earth lost a war it didn’t know it was fighting.

Since then, Dol has lived a simple life in the countryside — safe from the shadow of the Icon and its terrifying power. Hiding from the one truth she can’t avoid.

She’s different. She survived. Why?

When Dol and her best friend, Ro, are captured and taken to the Embassy, off the coast of the sprawling metropolis once known as the City of Angels, they find only more questions. While Ro and fellow hostage Tima rage against their captors, Dol finds herself drawn to Lucas, the Ambassador’s privileged son. But the four teens are more alike than they might think, and the timing of their meeting isn’t a coincidence. It’s a conspiracy.

Within the Icon’s reach, Dol, Ro, Tima, and Lucas discover that their uncontrollable emotions — which they’ve always thought to be their greatest weaknesses — may actually be their greatest strengths.

Bestselling author Margaret Stohl delivers the first book in a heart-pounding series set in a haunting new world where four teens must piece together the mysteries of their pasts — in order to save the future.

Number of Days It Took to Read: 3



This is quite the epic cover. This + Aliens = a very intrigued bibliophile.

The Writing Score: 3 out of 5

Recommendation: Casual Perusal. Not the alien post-invasion thriller you’re expecting.

Memorable or Forgettable: Forgettable

Rating: 2 out of 5


This book was one of my most anticipated reads of 2013 because of the topic of aliens (Aliens get me every time) and when I was given the opportunity to review it, well…I was ecstatic. This is Margaret Stohl’s debut solo novel after co-writing the ever so popular Beautiful Creatures series with Kami Garcia. This is a different sort of pressure since her debut novel was co-written with someone else and now fans are eager to find out what Stohl’s writing will be like without Garcia (Kami Garcia also a solo debut coming out this year).

To be frank, I was really disappointed with this book. It’s described as “heart pounding” and I was under the impression that this would be an action packed story with aliens (and yes, some YA romance thrown into the mix). My heart wasn’t pounding in any sense of the word and there were no aliens except the mentions that they were there…in the world somewhere. The pacing of the story was off and I felt like most of it’s focus was on the wrong aspects (places that should have been much shorter than others). They spent far too much time in the Embassy and, during that time, they didn’t do anything of significance or interest to the story except for the very end of their stay. I was struggling to understand some of their “powers” (i.e. Tima’s Freak power was confusing in exactly how it worked but that could just be me).

I felt nothing for the main character in regards to kinship. She felt a bit whiny or too introspective which might have lent to the whiny feel I got from her. Since the story wasn’t action packed, one would think that at least the romance would be considered the main or appealing point to the story but that was handled poorly. The relationship between Dol and Lucas made absolutely no sense and came out of left field. It was as though they were put together because it was expected. Lucas’s motivations or actions were consistent until the end which was when I thought, “Ooooookay” since it made no sense for his character.

With that said, I did like the start to the story before they got to the Embassy and the articles/reports etc between every chapter. I just wish that the flow of information was revealed more quickly, clearly and built aspects of the story that require the time (and pages) to build. The concept was a great one but the execution could use some work.

A. A. Omer

The opinions expressed here are mine and readers are welcome to disagree. In fact, I encourage it! I never believed in putting particular books or authors on some sort of universal pedestal but you’re free to put it on your individualized pedestal because I most certainly will.

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