Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Under the Never Sky ~ Veronica Rossi review

Under the Never Sky (Under the Never Sky #1)
January 3, 2012
374 pages
add to Goodreads/buy from Book Depo/or Amazon
**Currently $2.99 for Kindle/and for NOOK**

Aria's always lived in Reverie, protected in its dome world where everything is regulated. She gets her entertainment by visiting alternate realities, 'Realms' through her 'Smarteye', but never leaves the safety of Reverie.

So, when her mother goes missing and Aria's forced to try to survive outside the dome where the outsiders, 'savages,' live, she doesn't dream she can possibly do it, but she needs to find her mother.

Perry's spent his entire life as an outsider. His life is very different from Aria's but it's the only one he's ever known. Also looking for someone very dear to him, Perry, a 'savage,' is the last person Aria expects to need -- or get -- help from.

And what good could a girl from Reverie be for him?

If they can both stay alive, they may just find out.

So, I finally read Under the Never Sky. I started it a while ago but the first few chapters just didn't grab me and I put it aside. With the re-read/read-along happening in December, I decided to pick it up. In January. Oops.

But I really got into it once I moved past the first couple of chapters. Once the characters were introduced and we moved into the impetus for their meeting . . . and then their actual meeting, things really picked up.

In Under the Never Sky, Veronica Rossi really has created a great world. The dome of Reverie reminded me a bit of the domes in Sara Grant's Dark Parties and Teri Hall's The Line where the characters also live under isolated, protected, almost Utopian (or such is the goal) dome worlds. What was unique to Rossi's novel -- and I quite liked it -- was the characters ability to leave that dome and the readers' ability to experience the world and characters outside of that supposed utopia.

In essence, we get both sides of the coin -- with Aria and her knowledge and experience of Reverie as well as her stereotypes of the world outside Reverie and the outsiders, then with Perry and his knowledge of the world outside Reverie but his beliefs about those who live in the dome. We saw both characters adapt as they gained new information about the other and their surroundings.

Perry and Aria's friendship was great, they really did have to rely on each other, even when it was clear they didn't want to do so. Then you could see how the circumstances and time effected them and how they grew less wary of each other. They weren't just the savage and that girl from Reverie anymore. That part was great for me.

When there got to be a bit more to their relationship, it didn't work for me. I'm not sure if the timing felt right, really because I was more focused on it just feeling weird. It was something that was obviously coming, so it wasn't unexpected yet it still felt off. Perry's attraction to Aria started in a strange way (for me). Their interactions were still sweet, which goes back to me enjoying their friendship but the romance felt almost cheesy.

I'm still looking forward to reading Through the Ever Night - the sequel, though.

Version note: I listened to the audio version of Under the Never Sky (after starting with the print version) and really enjoyed it. The narrator does a great job -- even with a single narrator you really get the feel of separate, distinct characters. It's a definite audio recommendation! (Of which I actually need some . . . )

Rating: 7/10

Thank you to Harper for my copy of the book

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