Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi
Published by Harper
Genre: YA distopian
$17.99 (US hardback)
What it's about:
Exiled form her home, the enclosed city of Reverie, Aria knows her chances of surviving in the outer wasteland--known as The Death Shop--are slim. If the cannibals don't get her, the violent energy storms will. She's been taught that the very air she breathes can kill her. Then Aria meets an Outsider named Perry. He's wild--a savage-- and her only hope of staying alive.
A hunter for his tribe in a merciless landscape, Perry views Aria as sheltered and fragile--everything he would expect from a Dweller. But he needs Aria's help too; she alone holds the key to his redemption. Opposites in nearly every way, Aria and Perry must accept each other to survive. Their unlikely alliance forges a bond that will determine the fate of all who live under the never sky.
Everyone has been talking about how great this book is. Reviews are posted daily for it, all the authors I follow talk about it, Veronica Rossi is doing lots of touring for the book, and everyone of those says this book was awesome wrapped in a binding.
When I started it, I very much disliked it. It just sort of throws you into this weird world in which the people live like very high tech moles. They wear fancy eye pieces that allows them to travel to different realms and make it feel like they are actually there, all while they are actually sitting in a dank little room. All of this confused me. I didn't understand how any of this actually worked and it wasn't really being explained.
Then you had Perry's world, which is like living in the dark ages. That world made sense to me. The only thing that I found confusing was the aether. Is it some sort of horrible, magical clouds that cover the whole sky and destroy everything in it's path? And why do Aria's people die the second they are out in the aether? Just because they don't know how to survive or because their immune systems just can't handle it?
None of this was being explained and it was driving me a little nuts. But I forced myself to keep reading. I wanted to know why everyone loves this book. I had to focus not on the things that were pissing me off about the book, but at what I did like about it.
It turns out, once I got past about the first 130 pages or so, I was very much enjoying the book. Aria and Perry's relationship in the beginning was disappointing to me. It wasn't really grabbing my attention and wasn't what I was hoping for. By the time I hit around 250 pages into the book, I realized all of that had changed for me. I was fascinated not just by how Aria's and Perry's relationship flowed and evolved, but by how my feelings towards it changed right with them. While the characters were figuring out their feelings for each other, I was as well. I found that very cool. Normally once I decide I don't like a character, that never gets reversed, but it did in this book.
So overall, the beginning was a little too fast paced, but too slow all at once. I had issues getting into it, but once I did, I raced through it, wanting to know what happens in the end. I don't know if I will continue with the series, it was enjoyable while I was reading, but I don't see myself getting uber excited for the next book in the series.
My rating: 7.5/10