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Friday, October 16, 2009


Ice by Sarah Beth Durst (October 6th 2009—Margaret K. McElderry)

Grade: 3 stars out of 5

Summary: “When Cassie was a little girl, her grandmother told her a fairytale about her mother, who made a deal with the Polar Bear King and was swept away to the ends of the earth to become a prisoner of the trolls. Now that Cassie is older, she knows that this was a nice way of saying her mother had died. Cassie lives with her father at an Arctic research station, she is determined to become a scientist, and she has no time for make believe.

Then, on her eighteenth birthday, Cassie comes face to face with a polar bear who speaks to her. He tells her that her mother is alive, imprisoned in the troll castle. And that he can bring her back--if Cassie will agree to be his bride.

That is the beginning of Cassie's own real-life fairytale, one that sends her on an unbelievable journey across the brutal Arctic, through the Canadian boreal forest, and on the back of the North Wind to the land east of the sun and west of the moon. Before it is over, the world she knew will be swept away, and everything she holds dear will be taken from her--until she discovers the true meaning of love and family in the magical realm of Ice.”

Review: Ice was…odd. Coming from me well that’s odd by itself. One reason why I found it so weird was because [highlight to see text]:

Of the fact that she mates with the polar bear. Granted I understand that he’s a shape-shifter who isn’t really a polar bear but, still, most of the time we see him he’s a polar bear. Thus I’m used to identifying him as a polar bear and not a shape shifter.

Then there were times where I felt that the pacing was off. In retrospect the beginning and middle were fine but compared to the ending, the middle then felt sluggish. The ending seemed too fast for me. It all makes sense when you step back and recap the entire book but while I was reading it, it came to my attention that climax and resolution was really short. And during that time I also had this slight peeve:

She gave birth. I mean it was so quick; squat, push, and pop goes the baby. I understand that Ice is a fantasy book but this was just so unrealistic. Again it might just be a pet peeve to me and I’m probably dumbing this down.

At any rate Ice was filled with detailed description, wonderful imagery, and a concept that’s sure to surprise many. I think the author took quite a big gamble with this book as it’s not the norm of vampires, werewolves, or magicians so I give kudos to that. That and the fact that she’s incorporated such a huge crisis the world is facing—the melting of the polar ice caps and the extinction of the polar bears.

Overall: Durst created a world like no other: Magic versus reality.

Cover B+
You can't tell how gorgeous this cover is online. It's shimmery, shiny, and silvery.

This has been brought to you by Traveling to Teens.


  1. I understand your problems with the book and was actually wondering if anyone would mention the interesting romance here. I'm fine with it though, but was disappointed to find a lack of negative reviews talking about the bestiality in the book on Amazon and GoodReads. Maybe it's too soon.

    Totally agree with you on the rushed ending and with the baby thing though I didn't realize it at the time that it was so quick. I think I was too engrossed in the story and trying to finish it to really notice, lol.

    Great review!!

  2. I agree that the whole mating thing was odd. But I was able to accept it.

    And... along with the baby thing, it really wasn't that quick. At least, I didn't think so. It actually started back when she jumped off the cliff, so it took quite a while.

  3. Hm, so this is what Ice is about? I have seen the cover but never knew what it was about lol. Thanks for the review!

  4. I think the reason she gives birth so quickly is because she had been having contractions for hours and ignoring them. I saw it as the person having a baby in the car or on the kitchen floor or something.

  5. Interesting review, and I love the idea of having to highlight the "spoilers" text. It may not be new but I'm a newbie,so it's definitely new to me !

    And a big polar bear told me something awaited you here !