Thursday, February 17, 2011
Across the Universe by Beth Revis
I'll start by saying that whoever designed this book's cover did an amazing job. It's beautiful! I realize, of course, that you aren't supposed to judge a book by its cover, but personally, if it has a terrible cover I'm less likely to pick it up.
Across the Universe describes a futuristic scenario in which a group of people have been sent on a spaceship, Godspeed, to take over a new planet. This planet will provide resources that will in turn provide profit for people back on Earth. Everyone currently living on the ship is the same: monoethnic, all speaking the same language, with no differences to cause dissent. Although they don't realize it, there are also hundreds of selected people cryogenically frozen in the hold of the ship, the people that will "terraform" the new planet. 17 year old Amy is one of them. The book flip-flops between her point of view and that of Elder, also 17 and the leader-in-training on board the ship. The current leader is Eldest, and Elder will take over when he dies. Meanwhile, someone unplugs Amy down in the hold, and the question is, who did it? Amy becomes friends with Eldest, and together they search for the truth about many things on the ship as more frozen people become unplugged.
Revis has done an excellent job of developing the world of Godspeed. There are different levels to the ship, new technologies from the future, and of course things that are not what they seem. The characters all have some depth to them; for example, although Amy seems tough at times, when we see the world from her point of view she is very vulnerable. As the book continues, Revis reveals new insights at a good pace, keeping you hooked. I really loved the ending, as well. It was not a perfect ending at all, but it left me eager to see what happens next with the characters. One thing that bothered me was how quickly the perspective changed between Elder and Amy. There would be one page of Amy, then a few pages of Elder, and so on. This was rather confusing at times when I forget who was the narrator.
Overall, I recommend this book! I haven't thought of a food for it, so it's just a 4 for now. Here is the author's website; this is her first book: