Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Review: Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi

Publisher: HarperCollins
Date of Release: January 3, 2012
Number of pages: 384
Where I got this book: Netgalley eARC
My rating: 4.5/5

Summary from Amazon:
"Since she’d been on the outside, she’d survived an Aether storm, she’d had a
knife held to her throat, and she’d seen men murdered. This was worse.
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, a big Thank You to HarperCollins and Netgalley for giving me the chance to read and review this book! I know it is going to be hugely popular! What a debut for Rossi!

Aria lives in a "virtual" world - the Realms. All of their so-called life experiences are basically fabricated by technology. Aria's "friend", Soren wants to have a REAL experience by breaking out of their realm, which is against the law, and he takes Aria and some other friends along for the ride. The night goes horribly wrong, ending in lives lost, and Aria is charged with the crime. She is banished from the realm, and is left in the Outside known as The Death Shop.
It is here that she meets Peregrine, or Perry, who has sort of been banished from his home as well. Perry is what Aria calls an "Outsider" or "Savage." Perry thinks Aria is just a naive "Dweller." Basically, they can't stand each other. But Perry knows that Aria is not equipped to survive in these surroundings, so he takes pity on her. She needs to get to her mother, who she had been trying without luck to contact before these events, and Perry needed to find his nephew, Talon, who had been kidnapped by the Dwellers who left Aria. They form a grudging alliance, and set out on their quest. Aria and Perry are complete opposites, but as the saying goes...."opposites attract!"

It is so hard to summarize everything that happened in this book! It was just chock full of adventure, with twists and turns all along the way. The characters were so well developed, especially Perry and Aria. In the beginning, Aria WAS very naive, and well, spoiled, in my opinion. But, by the end of the book...she was brave, bold, strong, and she could handle just about anything on her own. But, the progression seemed completely natural. I could see true growth in her character. She was very real to me. Perry was a strong, street-wise (or should that be forest-wise?), gruff kind of guy. He just really didn't seem to know what to make of Aria. It was obvious though, that he had a sensitive, caring side. And, again, Rossi did a fabulous job in the area of character development. The romance that developed was not the contrived, cheesy kind that you might expect. They started off basically hating each other, but as they are forced to rely on each other, a friendship blossoms, that slowly turns into true love. It was just so sweet, but not sugary sweet. Know what I mean?

The world that Rossi created, with the Realms and the Outside, was so unusual and interesting. The virtual world that Aria lived in really seemed like it could be something that happens in our future, the way that technology is advancing and becoming so important. Kind of scary, actually. The contrast between the two worlds really added to the story.

I really enjoyed this book, and the ending left me aching for more. I will definitely be looking out for the next book. I highly recommend this book to those looking for a fast-paced adventure/romance!

This review is also posted on Goodreads, Amazon, and Netgalley.


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