Reviews for Impostors / Hostage, part 1

Kirkus
Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

A twin raised as a body double for her famous sister is sent on her first solo mission.Sisters Rafi and Frey live under the shadow of their powerful father, leader of the city of Shreve. Rafi was raised in the public eye as a diplomat, attending parties and currying favor. Frey is a secret, enduring brutal training to ward off would-be assassins and taking her sister's place when a setting is deemed too dangerous. But when their father strikes a business deal with the first family of a neighboring city, there's a twist: The Palafoxes want Rafi as collateral to ensure there's no funny business. Sent there instead, Frey's world is turned upside down as she gets her first taste of freedom in a new city and quickly befriends Col, the Palafox heirbut her own duplicity turns out to be no match for those around her. In a setting that seems like a parallel Europe, the Palafoxes speak Spanish, and race is not explicitly defined. One character uses "they/them" pronouns. Intricately choreographed action sequences abound; Frey's unplanned adventure moves like a swift game of chess, but the fireworks take precedence over Frey and Col's relationship, and they read more as pawns in war games than fully realized people. Although set in the world of Uglies (2005), this work is accessible as an entry point.Impressive, immaculately plotted sci fi chock full of twists but lacking heart. (Science fiction. 12-18) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.


School Library Journal
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Gr 7 Up-The highly anticipated return to the world of the "Uglies" series does not disappoint. In the years after Tally Youngblood's disappearance, a new order rules in Shreve: Rafi and Frey's father is a merciless dictator, who will stop at nothing to get what he wants. Rafi and Frey, who are identical twins, are merely pawns in his deranged quest for power. Rafi, the elder sibling, was raised to be the perfect daughter and heir, a master of poise and etiquette. Frey, on the other hand, was raised in secret as her body double. Trained as a killer, Frey's entire purpose is to protect Rafi, sacrificing herself if she must. When Frey is sent at their father's behest as a hostage to a rival country, she is the perfect imposter. The plan is for Frey to stay for a short time while their father helps with a local rebellion. Unfortunately, their father doesn't seem to care so much about bringing her back alive. Westerfeld's fast-paced and engaging storytelling will effortlessly engross "Uglies" fans and new readers alike in the dystopian world of Shreve. Frey's journey from secret twin to a revolutionary hero is unique and well developed with a surprising twist. With some light romance, innovative sci-fi weaponry, and a page-turning plot, this is sure to delight teens. VERDICT A fun-filled, action-adventure, science fiction story that can either be a great introduction to the "Uglies" universe, or a welcoming return. Highly recommended.-Ariel Birdoff, New York Public Library © Copyright 2018. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Book list
From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.

Only a select few know Frey and Rafi are twins; most people think Rafi is their rich father's sole heir. But Frey is also Rafi's body double, taught to kill for and protect her more charming sister. It's been her sole focus for 16 years, until her father sends her in Rafi's place to participate in a dangerous deal. Everyone thinks she's her sister but the stakes grow higher when she begins to fall for Col, the son of the rival leader, who may eventually learn her secret, putting both her and Rafi in danger. Set some years after Westerfeld's Uglies series, this is a story of the lengths one is willing to go to keep their loved ones safe. Fans of the original quartet will be delighted to see how much the world of Tally Youngblood has grown and expanded. Frey is a strong, likable protagonist, a fitting heir to the series' original characters. Even if readers aren't familiar with the original series, they'll still enjoy this well-paced novel from start to finish. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Westerfeld's many, many fans will line up for this return to the world of his überpopular Uglies.--Qurratulayn Muhammad Copyright 2018 Booklist


Horn Book
(c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Raised as a body double for her identical twin Rafia, Frey is sent in her sister's place when a rival first family demands a hostage, but their despotic father never meant to honor the trade deal. Can newly disposable Frey find an ally in the rival family's son? Family drama and exploration of identity add verve to this believably futuristic tale of warfare and political intrigue set in the world of Uglies. (c) Copyright 2019. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Publishers Weekly
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Set in the futuristic world of Westerfeld's Uglies books, this action-packed series starter barely pauses to take a breath. Frey and Rafi are 16-year-old twin sisters, but the people of Shreve don't know that. Rafi is the self-possessed face of Shreve, the city their father rules with an iron fist, electronically tracking the citizens' every move. Trained as an assassin, Frey is a secret who exists only as her sister's body double. After Frey, posing as her sister, is sent to the rival City of Victoria to help negotiate for much-needed steel, she joins a group of rebels to take down her father and prevent all-out war. In narrator Frey, Westerfeld presents a strong, complex heroine who learns to be her own person, not just a carbon copy. Themes such as environmental conservation and individual freedom deepen the story right up to its explosive finale, which will leave readers looking forward to the next installment. Ages 12-up. Agent: Jill Grinberg, Jill Grinberg Literary Management. (Sept.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.