Wednesday 23 February 2011

Book review : Across The Universe - Beth Revis

*** Don't miss the chance to win a copy right here on my blog ! ***

The blurb on the back of the book describes this novel as a "genre-busting romantic thriller". I do agree with the word genre-busting but I would have focused more on the blend of science fiction and crime thriller, rather than romance, which is certainly added into the mix but as a minor ingredient.

It is a highly innovative and original plot, and quite unlike anything I've ever read before. The novel opens with a rather creepy scene as teenager Amy and her parents are put to sleep in a cryogenics laboratory. The world as we know it is on its last legs and the government has selected an elite group of specialists, including both of Amy's parents, to be frozen and sent off to recreate a new colony on a distant planet. Amy is allowed to go along for the ride.

But things don't go according to plan and Amy is defrosted fifty years too early. Was it an accident ? A techical malfunction ? Or - as other "frozens" start to be mysteriously unplugged and left to die - could it be murder ? As Amy struggles to come to terms with life on what is essentially an intergalactic prison, she starts to uncover more and more worrying and sinister secrets. As she delves deeper into the mysterious leader Eldest and his controversial ways of controlling the spaceship's inhabitants, the novel throws up a lot of interesting discussion points that would be perfect for a reading group to look at.

As the only two youngsters on board, it is clear to see that Amy and Elder, the future leader of the ship, are the way forward but I felt that their personalities weren't quite developed enough. The book also finishes with a rather vague ending - things will change but we're not really sure how - and we don't really know what will happen to the "baddies". But this is the first episode in a three-part series so I'm sure many of these points will be further developed in the sequels.

It's a really interesting blend of genres that works very well. I actually thought the plot sounded a bit farfetched when I first read the blurb but the author makes it all sound very believable and keeps the reader's interest, as well as the suspense, at optimal levels by alternating narrators and throwing in lots of unexpected twists.

I'll definitely be looking out for the follow-up novels to see what happens next. Waking up the rest of the frozens is bound to shake things up on board Godspeed and I can't wait to see how it all pans out !

star rating : 4.5/5
RRP : £6.99

Paperback: 416 pages
Publisher: Puffin (3 Mar 2011)
ISBN-10: 0141333669
ISBN-13: 978-0141333663

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  1. Comment on the Book review : Across The Universe - Beth Revis

  2. Ahhh this sooounds sooo good! I cannot wait to read it! It's not even out here yet =( sucks!

  3. This does sound like such a great book!! I have heard both good and bad things about it though.

  4. I've been tempted back into young adult fiction recently and I'm quite enjoying it. This sounds like it would be good.


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