• Page Count: 304
  • Release Date: December 13, 2016
  • My Rating: 3.5 stars

Book Description:

Iceling (Icelings #1) Lorna’s adopted sister, Callie, is part of a mysterious group of non-lingual teens, Icelings, born on a remote Arctic island, who may not be entirely human. Now Callie wants to go home.

Seventeen-year-old Lorna loves her adoptive sister, Callie. But Callie can’t say “I love you” back. In fact, Callie can’t say anything at all.

Because Callie is an Iceling—one of hundreds of teens who were discovered sixteen years ago on a remote Arctic island, all of them lacking the ability to speak or understand any known human language.

Mysterious and panicked events lead to the two sisters embarking on a journey to the north, and now Lorna starts to see that there’s a lot more to Callie’s origin story than she’d been led to believe. Little does she know what’s in store, and that she’s about to uncover the terrifying secret about who—and what—Callie really is.

My Thoughts:


I think people who like contemporary YA stories with a hint of paranormal or dystopian are going to love this series!

Lorna’s dad was on an Arctic expedition and found a bunch of babies, so she refers to her adopted sister as an “iceling” (ice sibling). The Arctic Recovery Orphans still need to go in for monthly checkups and nobody can be in the room. Lorna’s sister Callie doesn’t speak and has conniptions, which is apparently normal with the orphans. They don’t react to regular stimuli and are totally silent.

Their parents go on a trip to the Galapagos, leaving Lorna alone with Callie. Lorna’s friend Stan also has an iceling who is acting strange. After a series of odd events and speculation, Lorna and Stan decide to drive their siblings back to visit their Arctic home. Things get kind of odd with Lorna’s mom calling to say that the monthly hospital checkups were actually with an assigned government liaison, that their family has been playing with fire by having this girl in their home for so many years, and that Lorna shouldn’t be tricked by Callie or get between her and the government because there will be hell to pay. Callie is some kind of monster/weapon and the government is super sketchy. And the story just gets weirder and weirder.

So this isn’t quite the chill road trip story it sounded like on the cover. It’s way more entertaining! The world is also a bit different from reality – like supernatural and unexplained abilities are more normal/frequent in every country.

Otherwise the writing is good and Lorna’s personality comes through in her first person narration, so I liked her character. This story was a bit too odd for me at times, but it was definitely original!

Thank you to the publisher for sending me an ARC!


5 comments on “Iceling by Sasha Stephenson”

  1. Hey I was wondering if you could answer a question about this book. In the description, it seems that some kind of parallel is being drawn between the icelings and developmentally disabled people. Is that true within the book? Is there some kind of “cure” narrative being followed? I can’t tell if the book is meant to cast the icelings as non-human creatures that suck resources and time or if the book is a pro-neurodiverity story about accepting differences. Thanks you!

    • This is part of a series, so I’m not sure if there will be a “cure” narrative followed. BUT it was really odd to be honest and I wouldn’t be comfortable saying that it’s pro-neurodiversity because I’m not entirely sure that the icelings are even human (but I’m not positive they’re aliens, either? they’re definitely a different race or some kind of inhuman government experiment) and there were some questionable bits that were mostly left open-ended for now. So… long story short, I wouldn’t recommend it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *