Friday, 4 July 2014

Review: Across the Universe by Beth Revis

Title: Across the Universe
Series: Across the Universe #1
Author: Beth Revis
Publisher: Razorbill
Publication date: January 11, 2011
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction, Dystopian, Romance, Mystery, Space, Action


A love out of time. A spaceship built of secrets and murder.

Seventeen-year-old Amy joins her parents as frozen cargo aboard the vast spaceship Godspeed and expects to awaken on a new planet, three hundred years in the future. Never could she have known that her frozen slumber would come to an end fifty years too soon and that she would be thrust into the brave new world of a spaceship that lives by its own rules.

Amy quickly realizes that her awakening was no mere computer malfunction. Someone - one of the few thousand inhabitants of the spaceship - tried to kill her. And if Amy doesn't do something soon, her parents will be next.

Now Amy must race to unlock Godspeed's hidden secrets. But out of her list of murder suspects, there's only one who matters: Elder, the future leader of the ship and the love she could never have seen coming.

Lately I've found that I seem to love YA sci-fi novels. This book was no exception. Across the Universe is so much more than a Sci-fi Dystopian novel. This book has tragedy, romance, action and even the emotion of a contemporary novel. This book was incredible in the way that there were constant revelations, just as you think you know everything, something changes and secrets unfold. It was so intriguing.

The premise of this book had me from the get-go. Cryogenically frozen people aboard a spaceship traveling to a new planet to colonise? Yes please!

One of our two protagonists, Amy, was such a well-rounded character. She was aggressive, loyal, confused, curious, but also wise beyond her years. She captured my attention from the very beginning. Aside from her love, bravery and loyalty towards her family, I loved how normal she was. She had this very girl-next-door vibe. Despite the horrific and insane circumstances she'd been placed under, she is very much a normal girl struggling in a very abnormal situation. I really liked her for that.

I had very mixed feelings about Elder. Elder is a sixteen year old boy on the verge of manhood, who has lived his entire life knowing that he is to become the future leader of Godspeed and all of its people. Lets face it, Elder was a wimp at the beginning of the book. He was completely clueless about the happenings of the ship that he was to be the future leader of. Also, I found his early obsession with Amy to be a little bit.. creepy? Don't even get me started with Eldest. Gosh. Eldest was a pain in the butt. Eldest thought that Hitler was a great leader, if that doesn't make you instantly hate him then I don't know what will.

I thought that the dual POV in this book was quite useful. Obviously, Amy's pov helped paint a picture of how much life on the ship had changed in all the years, and Elder's helped us to understand the ship's history and system. It was very effective for world-building. Also, Amy and Elder had incredibly unique voices which was very refreshing. Bravo to Beth Revis for the awesome amount of world-building, she was able to explain the ship's system so vividly.

Alot of YA dystopians have pretty predictable plots (alliteration is cool), but not Across the Universe. The plot was incredibly intriguing, there were so many strange concepts and surprises, it really kept me on my feet. Especially that thing at the end. THE THING. I DID NOT EXPECT THE THING.

Across the Universe is a very fast-paced and gripping novel, perfect for fans of science fiction/dystopian novels set deep in space. This book was beautifully written and provided a great set up for the rest of the series. I will most definitely be continuing with the series and reading the sequel, A Million Suns, sometime in the near future.

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