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Kristen Simmons

Three

Kristen Simmons Three
$7.99 New
 
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Series:

Article 5

Biographical note:

KRISTEN SIMMONS has a master’s degree in social work and is an advocate for mental health. She lives with her husband, Jason, and their precious greyhound, Rudy, in Tampa, Florida. 

Excerpt from book:

CHAPTER
1
 
 
THE dream was changing. Even asleep I sensed it.
Before, it had been my mother and me, linked arm in arm, drawn down the center of our deserted street by the same violent destiny: home and soldiers and blood. Always blood. But now there was something different. Off. Needling at me like a riddle I couldn’t figure out.
The asphalt was still broken. Our neighborhood waited, silent and haunted, each condemned front door posting the Statutes like a warning of the plague. Above, a pale, flat sky spanned from shoulder to shoulder, and I was alone.
And then beside me, where my mother should have been, Chase appeared.
Not the Chase of now, but the boy I’d met long ago—messy black hair and the curious, daring eyes of an eight-year-old, white socks winking from beneath the jeans he’d already outgrown. He darted down the lane and I ran after him, giggling.
He was fast; every time I swiped at him, he escaped, my fingertips always just inches away from his billowing T-shirt. His laughter filled me with something warm and forgotten, and for a time, there was nothing but joy.
But the sky began to bruise, and the carefree way he kicked a rock down the middle of the road suddenly worried me. He was too young to know what was happening—that this place wasn’t safe anymore. With urgency, I reached for his hand.
Curfew, I told him. We have to get home.
But he fought me.
I tried to pull him along, but it was no use; his little hand was slippery in my grasp. The failing light tightened my fear.
They were coming. I could feel their footsteps inside my chest.
Darkness came, black as coal and just as thick, until I could no longer see the houses and all that remained were the innocent boy beside me and the broken street we stood upon.
A soldier approached, his uniform neatly pressed, his slim, agile build too familiar, even at a distance. His golden hair gleamed, a halo in the moonless night.
I knew how this part went, but my heart still thumped all the way down to my stomach. I tried to push the boy back, to keep him away from the man who’d killed my mother. You will not touch him, I told Tucker Morris, but no sound came from my lips. Still, the cry echoing in my head seemed to infuse Tucker with speed, and suddenly he was upon us, three feet away, aiming a gun directly between my eyes.
I screamed for the boy to run, but before I could turn to do the same, my gaze found the man’s face.
It wasn’t Tucker. Before me was a different soldier, one with pallid skin and eyes long dead, and a hole in his chest that wept blood. One we’d killed to escape the hospital in Chicago.
Harper.
I gasped, tripped, and fell backward. And left the boy beside me exposed to the weapon.
Harper shot, a sound that made the world quake and the street break open. And when it stopped, the little boy lay motionless, a fist-sized hole punched through his rib cage.
I woke with a start, braced to fight. The image of the soldier—Harper—who Chase had shot while we’d been rescuing Rebecca from the Chicago rehab hospital faded, but left a sticky residue, making it impossible to fall back asleep.
My breath evened out, and as it did I registered the sounds of sleep: heavy breathing and the occasional snore. The hard floor beneath my back served as a reminder that we’d taken shelter in an abandoned house, a break from the beach where we’d slept the last three nights. The heavy moon, nearly f
Praise for Article 5

Article 5 can be compared to Lauren Oliver’s Delirium in terms of the control of emotions and morality imposed by society. The escape story is interesting, as is the fragile rebuilding of trust between the teens. Ember’s feelings of helplessness are palpable. The story is well written, and the descriptions are vivid. Fans of dystopian books will love this debut novel, the first in a series.”—School Library Journal

“The new world imagined here is legitimately terrifying. [T]he chemistry between Chase and Ember is excellent, and the plentiful action, high stakes, and deliciously angst-laden love story will please readers.”—Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books

“Paints a picture of a world that could easily be our future.  [Simmons’] fluid writing creates an easy-to-read story that opens the eyes of readers to what the loss of civil liberties could entail.  This book is a must have for all young adult collections.”—VOYA
 
“Kristen Simmons’ Article 5 is a gripping, atmospheric story of survival. Alongside a fierce depiction of oppressive government, Simmons has created a bleak portrait of an America lost. I could hardly put it down. Ember Miller and Chase Jennings can be my post-apocalyptic wingmen anytime.”—Kendare Blake

 

“Kristen Simmons fantastically combines romance and dystopia. She is a must read!”—Katie McGarry, author of Pushing the Limits


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