Hello hello! It's time for this week's Bookanista review!
This week's book, UNDER THE NEVER SKY, was written by our very own Bookanista, Veronica Rossi. I had the pleasure of meeting Veronica last year and she is as intelligent and interesting as you'd expect for the author of such a fabulous novel!
Exiled from 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, electrified 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.
First off, how freaking awesome is the title of this book. LOVE IT. And the way it ties into the story and the characters is really cool.
So, it took me a while to pick up this book, not because I didn't think it would be awesome, but because I'm not really into the dystopian/post-apocalyptic thing. I wasn't sure if it would be to my taste. BUT when I read all the awesome reviews for it, and saw people talking more about the characters than the dystopian elements, I thought, Hmmmm.... So I grabbed a copy and settled in.
And boy am I glad I did!! The first couple of chapters didn't *quite* pull me in, but when I got to Perry's first chapter, I was absolutely, 100% HOOKED. Peregrine just might be my favorite male YA character right now. He's strong, smart, and emotionally wounded...desperately loyal to those he loves and capable of making difficult choices. I loved the choices Veronica made in developing his world, from the political structure of the tribes to the abilities of the "savages".
If it was Perry who hooked me, it was Aria who ultimately kept me reading, to watch her incredible transformation from a "Dweller" to someone comfortable in the outside world. I LOVED that the characters didn't stay static in this book - they grew and changed, influenced by both their surroundings and each other.
And that's why this book worked for me, ultimately. Beyond the gorgeous writing and fully realized world. It was the characters and their interactions, the slow build of Aria's relationship with Perry. I LOVED that this was not a story with "insta-love" or characters who fell in love for the author's convenience. I LOVE LOVE LOVE how organic the relationship and character building is. So awesome! But don't get me wrong, the writing IS beautiful and the world building IS fantastic. All around, UTNS surprised and impressed me...and I can't WAIT for book 2!
If you haven't picked up your copy, time to head to the store and grab one! :-)
Here's what the other Bookanistas are up to this week!
Christine Fonseca interviews author Eisley Jacobs
Stasia Ward Kehoe gets psyched for the release of TORN
Debra Driza swoons for SLIDE
Tracy Banghart takes a shine to UNDER THE NEVER SKY