Thursday, February 3, 2011

BR: Across the Universe

by Beth Revis
Godspeed series; book I

Man, the hype for this novel has been unreal! I initially wasn't too interested in it until so so so many positive reviews for it was popping up, then I knew I just had to read it. Plus, I love trying sci-fi books, I really don't read enough of them.

Summary (goodreads)

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.

My Expectations: Really high, I fully expected to LOVE it. Dual narration, awesome setting, fantastic premise? Sign me up!

Delivery: It kind of disappointed me in terms of expectations, but I still liked it.

Put-down-ability: I found the first third quite slow, but it got better after that, 5/10

My Thoughts

So, have you heard of this book? I sure hope so, because from the breathtaking cover to the beyond intriguing premise, this is set up to be the next big thing, and in a way, it is. There is so much potential for Across the Universe, and I felt that Revis managed to keep readers hooked with a beautiful blend of mystery, secrets and romance.

The issues I had with this book aren't necessarily critical remarks. I just felt that for the first half of the book I felt extremely disconnected from both characters. I just didn't care for them, and I don't think even by the end of it, either of them will be getting a BFF charm from me. Yes, they were pretty well rounded, had their high and low points, they had some wonderful chemistry but it never felt intimate, it felt very much like a story.

My lack of empathy with the characters hindered my enjoyment of the novel, no doubt, but I feel there are actually numerous positive aspects that kept me interested in what will happen, namely, the mystery. I liked the way everything was set up and there was no clear suspect, plus the routes Amy and Elder took to try and unveil the many secrets of the ship. I would have hoped to feel a bit more urgency, but it's forgivable. I did find the very end when Elder reveals a 'big thing' to be... eye-brow raising. I mean, you couldn't mention earlier?... Really?????

I have to say the setting, or should I say, Godspeed was my favourite aspect of the novel. I loooved every single detail Revis included, the imagery is just stunning. From the people to the science to the overall ambiance, things were top-notch 'world-building' for sure.

I do want to mention the arcing themes of the novel, I really liked the way Revis included moral undertones without having them overpower any aspect. It adds a level of depth that pushes the novel from a simple adventure to a thoughtful, 'thinking' book.

Rating in HP Terms: Acceptable
Recommended for: All YA fans, people who are and aren't interested in sci-fi, people looking for a fantastic setting and premise and mystery with MURDER! Yay!
Acknowledgements: 3/5

8.3/10 - because while I didn't fall in love with it like many others, I certainly liked it. I loved the setting of Godspeed created by Revis and all the futuristic shenanigans going on. The secrets and mystery kept things moving and interesting, however, I unfortunately never grew to care for the characters. Across the Universe certainly is an impressive debut.
And also, this novel would make an AMAZING movie. Seriously. So, mhmm... get on it guys.

source: publisher
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book website


  1. The premise of this novel is amazing. I liked Amy a lot but Elder it took me a while to connect with him. He certainly didn't make me swoon. I am excited to see what Revis does with book 2. Great review :)

  2. Awesome review! I've been wanting to read this one.

    Sounds good :)

  3. Really? I could not put it down. The mystery and the details got me. Thanks for your honest review :)

  4. Thanks for the honest review. I have been waiting to read it because I know the first 100 pages or so are slow.

  5. Yeah, I agree. That map thing is pretty fascinating.

    Very insightful, fair review Audrey. Thanks.

  6. Nic- yes, I am so with you on the not-so-swoon factor!

    Zoe- Yay! :)

    Juju- hehe, I thought I was weird too :s

    Yani- It's not too bad honestly, it's a bit slow compared to the rest but not too hard to get in to :)

    Missie- oh, and i love the dual covers! :p thanks :)

  7. Ditto, ditto, ditto, ditto.


    (Thanks for the review. ;D)


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