REVIEW #158: The Ward (The Ward #1) by Jordana Frankel

Title: The Ward
Series: The Ward #1
Author: Jordana Frankel
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Release Date: April 30th 2013
Pages: Hardcover, 465 pages
Source: Library

Summary from Goodreads:
Sixteen-year-old Ren is a daredevil mobile racer who will risk everything to survive in the Ward, what remains of a water-logged Manhattan. To save her sister, who is suffering from a deadly illness thought to be caused by years of pollution, Ren accepts a secret mission from the government: to search for a freshwater source in the Ward, with the hope of it leading to a cure.

However, she never expects that her search will lead to dangerous encounters with a passionate young scientist; a web of deceit and lies; and an earth-shattering mystery that’s lurking deep beneath the water’s rippling surface.

Jordana Frankel’s ambitious debut novel and the first in a two-book series, The Ward is arresting, cinematic, and thrilling—perfect for fans of Scott Westerfeld or Ann Aguirre.

The Ward was getting some mixed reviews but I am a sucker for Dystopians so I had to give it a try. I am glad I did, while the book had its faults I still found it very entertaining.

Setting & World Building: The book took place in an area that used to be NYC but has since been flooded over destroying some of the areas and creating a dark, mysterious setting.  The setting itself was kinda creepy but interesting.  There were quite a few times I found myself struggling to imagine the world Ren lived in.  The overall scenery and destroyed city could have been better described, I understood the racing but struggled to picture the buildings in the races.

Characters: I loved Ren.  She was strong female character who would do anything for her sister Aven.  Their love was fantastic and powerful.  The secondary characters supported the story line and helped develop the overall underground racing type of life Ren lived.

Romance: The romance between Ren and her bookie was not bad, but not great.  Pretty middle of the road. He had his own baggage that I was not expecting that played a particular role in the plot but their love story was not a focus point of the story.  I hope the sequel develops their story.

Overall, The Ward was a fast paced, dark, and fun story about saving family and doing the right thing.  I cannot wait to see what the next book brings.  I wish there was not so much of a cliffhanger, I NEED to know how things are going to pan out.   The action and characters were great, the world building needed some work earning it 3.5 stars.  



  1. I loved this book so much! I thought that characters where the best part and I liked that the world wasn't over described, but I know that I'm one of the only ones out there. Also can we talk about Callum? He's totally my favorite!

    1. The characters were fantastic, they had to be my favorite part of the book. Callum... Yes, he is great :)

  2. I think I liked this book more than you did. I really enjoyed the world-building and didn't have too much trouble with the descriptions of the racing, etc. Derek--what can I say? I had so many different emotions about Derek. I basically felt everything that Ren was feeling: I was crushing on him, I loved him, I was mad at him, I was disappointed by him, I had hope for him, I felt betrayed and hurt by him, I had hope for him again. Up and down and up and down. The author definitely had me guessing about his character. And Callum, I loved him! ~Pam

    1. I can agree about the guessing, I had no idea where his character was going to go. Callum was fantastic!

  3. I like both the fact that the setting is a destroyed city and that the protagonist is a strong woman. This always makes for a good story if the writer knows how to play his cards.

    I don't like it either when a book ends abruptly and I just have to hold my breath until the next book in the series is published. It has happened to me before and that's actually one of the things I don't like about book series.

    Mada Sch @ Confiture de rĂªves.

  4. I've had my eye on The Ward for awhile now, but have put it off due to the mixed reviews. I think I'm still going to give it a try, I love world-building and this seems to fit the bill overall. Thanks for sharing Ashley. (:

  5. I don't like cliff-hangers :( Despite the mixed reviews, I think I'll give it a shot.


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