Author: Gregg Rosenblum
Series: Revolution 19 #1
Published by: HarperTeen
Publication Date: January 8, 2013
Twenty years ago, the robots designed to fight our wars abandoned the battlefields. Then they turned their weapons on us.
Only a few escaped the robot revolution of 2071. Kevin, Nick, and Cass are lucky —they live with their parents in a secret human community in the woods. Then their village is detected and wiped out. Hopeful that other survivors have been captured by bots, the teens risk everything to save the only people they have left in the world—by infiltrating a city controlled by their greatest enemies.
Revolution 19 is a cinematic thriller unlike anything else. With a dynamic cast of characters, this surefire blockbuster has everything teen readers want—action, drama, mystery, and romance. Written by debut novelist Gregg Rosenblum, this gripping story shouldn’t be missed.
What? Futuristic robots taking over mankind? Count me in! I was all over Revolution 19 as soon as I read the blurb and saw that cover. The premise even made me think of Partials by Dan Wells, which is one of my favorite books. So I just knew this book was going to kick ass. Haha… yeah… I was wrong. Okay, it wasn’t that bad, but it wasn’t great either.
The year is 2051 when the robots that were build to fight wars revolted and turned on the humans. A lot of people were killed, some were “released into the wild,” while the rest were rounded up and kept in the city. The book is told from three different perspectives: Nick (17), Cass (15), and Kevin (13). They’re siblings living with their parents in a community called Freepost, which is out in the wilderness. They’ve been living out there for 14 years since the bots revolted, so they really have no idea what it’s like in the city. And yes, it’s just called the “City.” Then there is an attack on the Freepost, leaving most either dead or captured.
Revolution 19 started out on the boring side; I came extremely close to giving up on it. It did eventually pick-up the pace and hold my attention, though. It got a lot more interesting once Nick, Cass, and Kevin got to the city. However, it annoyed my immensely how the three of them decided to go look for the parents in the city without even first going to see if they were hurt or dead after the attack. They didn’t even know where the city was, only that it was east. But hey, let’s go wandering around trying to find a place that could be hundreds or thousands of miles away and is supposed to be filled with killer robots without first walking a few miles back to make sure we even need to. Who does that?! It was things like that that really got under my skin with this book.
The characters is Revolution 19 were okay. I can’t say that I felt strongly for any of them one way or another. Kevin was probably the one the stuck out the most, but only because he had a few funny lines. I was really hoping for a lot more from Cass, but it seemed like I got the least from her. The secondary characters were more interesting than those three.
As for the romance the blurb claims this book has…. uh, no… more like very minimal flirting between kids. Which is perfectly fine, especially for younger readers. I certainly wouldn’t consider it romance, though. Actually, now that I really think about it, this book would be a great read for younger teen boys.
The reasoning for the robot revolt was… interesting, even though it kind of bothered me. I can’t exactly put a finger on why it did, but something about it felt odd. The bots felt it was fit to protect the humans from themselves, so it became like a “nanny state,” only hundred times worse, and even had “reeducation camp” type punishments. Even though I have an unexplainable issue with the reasoning, I did find the city itself intriguing. It came across as a futuristic 50’s style, sort of like the diner in Back to the Future 2, except not so shiny. At least that’s how I envisioned it.
I have a lot of questions, though. For instance, the robots were fighting wars for the humans, so what happened to other countries? Did all the robots from different places make a peace treaty, and turn on the humans from their own country? These and other questions might be answered in the next book, but it would have been nice to cover some of them in this one. I didn’t see any info about this being a series, but it obviously is with an ending like that.
Overall, I feel as though I liked Revolution 19, but I feel annoyed by it when I start thinking about specific details or lack thereof. I currently can’t say for sure if I would read the next book. I guess it will depend on how curious I am once it is released. I would have bought it for my son when he was about thirteen, though.