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Monday, January 2, 2012

Book Review: Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi

Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi

Series: Under the Never Sky #1
Genre: YA Dystopian
Publication Date: January 3, 2012
Publisher: HarperCollins
Format: eARC
Pages: 268
Source: NetGalley

Aria is a teenager in the enclosed city of Reverie. Like all Dwellers, she spends her time with friends in virtual environments, called Realms, accessed through an eyepiece called a Smarteye. Aria enjoys the Realms and the easy life in Reverie. When she is forced out of the pod for a crime she did not commit, she believes her death is imminent. The outside world is known as The Death Shop, with danger in every direction.

As an Outsider, Perry has always known hunger, vicious predators, and violent energy storms from the swirling electrified atmosphere called the Aether. A bit of an outcast even among his hunting tribe, Perry withstands these daily tests with his exceptional abilities, as he is gifted with powerful senses that enable him to scent danger, food and even human emotions.

They come together reluctantly, for Aria must depend on Perry, whom she considers a barbarian, to help her get back to Reverie, while Perry needs Aria to help unravel the mystery of his beloved nephew’s abduction by the Dwellers. Together they embark on a journey challenged as much by their prejudices as by encounters with cannibals and wolves. But to their surprise, Aria and Perry forge an unlikely love - one that will forever change the fate of all who live UNDER THE NEVER SKY

The first book in a captivating trilogy, Veronica Rossi’s enthralling debut sweeps you into an unforgettable adventure.

I'm surprised at how much I enjoyed this book. At first, I wasn't feeling it. Immediately, there were a lot of terms introduced that had to do with the world and I had no idea what any of them meant. The first
few chapters were a little ehhh for me. I know that a lot of people were immediately swept away by the beginning, but I had a hard time keeping up. After that, though, it was a pretty good ride. The worldbuilding may not have been the most original. The plot may not have been the most exhilarating. But underneath that there was brilliant writing that seriously sucked me deep into the world of Aria and Perry.

When I discovered that the narration was third person I was upset. When I discovered it was third person and it alternated between Perry and Aria I was even more upset. Generally, I don't like those types of books, but this one really worked well. It switched at all the right places - not too often, not too scarcely - and really helped readers get to know both of the characters. In the end, it was used to tie together the story lines and conflicts, not just to add action.

My favorite part of this book would be the romance between Perry and Aria. Not because I'm a romance freak, though that has something to do with it. But I think more YA romances should be like theirs. It progressed slowly and naturally, giving readers time to really root for their relationship. After 100 pages, Perry still hadn't told Aria his name. I love love loveddd how it took time for them to trust one another. It got to the point that the first time they kissed, my stomach was in knots because I was so excited! And then, here's the best part: Even though they fell in love, they maintained their individual goals and aspirations.

The character development was absolutely phenomenal, in my opinion. All of the characters grew tremendously, but especially Perry and Aria. Aria started out clueless about the real world. She's lived her entire life in the Realms where everything is generated. She doesn't know real pain and she has never seen a real rock. Perry has trust and self-deprecation issues. He thinks that he really is a Savage, and he thinks that he is cursed and that everyone he loves is doomed, pretty much. These two characters change each other so so so much. At the end, Aria is tough and determined and just made of win. Perry knows what it is like to really love and he knows that he has to do what he has to do to care for his tribe. I can't say for certain who my favorite character was, though, because they were all pretty kickass.

As I said before, the world wasn't that original. The technology had pretty much all been done before, but I still really enjoyed reading about it and learning more about the Pods. I'd recommend this to those who enjoyed Scott Westerfeld's Uglies trilogy and Robin Wasserman's Cold Awakening trilogy.

I couldn't believe how addicted I became to this book. I was utterly absorbed in the words and the story. The writing was very vivid and the plot, while not entirely unique or mind-blowing was still interesting. The action was tense and heart-pounding, and the conclusion was wrapped up nicely while leaving a TON open for the next book. The ending was not necessarily a cliffhanger exactly, but it still left me anxious for the next installment.

This was the last book I read in 2011 and I think it was a fabulous finale. This is a debut that I think true dystopian-lovers will really enjoy.

1 comment:

  1. Wonderful review. I am looking forward to this book. I have an ARC that I won coming in the mail, so I hope to read it soon. I have heard a lot of mixed stuff about it, so I hope I like it.


Thank you so much for taking the time to read and comment on my blog! I love to hear from my readers, whether they agree or disagree with my opinion :) I do my best to get back to every commenter, though I am not always successful. Heh...Anyway, I look forward to hearing what you have to say! :D

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