Book Reviews 2014 · Sci-Fi Books · Young Adult Book Reviews

‘Across the Universe’ by Beth Revis

Amy has left the life she loves for a world 300 years away.

Someone is waiting for her. He wants to protect her – and more if she’ll let him.

But who can she trust amidst the secrets and lies?

A killer is out there – and Amy has nowhere to hide…

3 Stars

After hearing so much hype for ‘Across the Universe‘ and finding a copy relatively cheap in the pretty covers (I was never going to pick up the new covers), I was eager to find out why this book is so well loved. In the end, I just thought that it was a little ‘meh’.

My initial problem was with the writing. The pace was incredibly slow, and the use of slang terms such as ‘uni’ and ‘frex’ really began to wind me up very very quickly.

I am a huge fan of science and medicine in books in any shape or form, however I was underwhelmed by the lack of scientific basis for the majority of the book. I know that these events are obviously implausible, but I was hoping for a little scientific background, and what there was ended up being very few and far between. There was a nice little bit about the functioning of the ship and its engine, but aside from that, all of the futuristic medical nonsense was purely aggravating.

When I started this, I was intrigued and wanted to understand more about the circumstances of Amy and Elder. This intrigue just faded entirely, and very swiftly. Amy transpired to be a tad too whiny for my liking, Elder was rather dim to not pick up on the blatantly obvious twist, and their romance seemed to gravitate entirely around the fact that Elder was increasingly horny and Amy was the only ‘different’ person around. They didn’t seem to have any actual feelings for each other beyond “It’s ‘the season’ and there is a girl who doesn’t look like she could be my sister”. I truly thought that Amy and Harvey would have been a nicer couple, and actually had chemistry, which is virtually non-existent with Elder.

The plot twists were obvious. I don’t mind obvious plot twists if the reveal is executed well, as I enjoy being able to say that I worked it out whilst still getting some suspense from the reveal. However, whilst I did like this plot twist, the execution of the reveal was drab. It just didn’t excite me, there’s nothing else to be said.

The ending of this book seemed very final, and if I wasn’t aware of its two sequels, I would assume it was a badly concluded stand-alone. The end, whilst not definitive, definitely left little direction for the series to go aside from Amy and Elder’s relationship, and if that is the only aspect carried over to the other books, then I reckon that it should’ve been compacted into this one and then had the ending of ‘Across the Universe’ changed to completely close the door on the story. Alternatively, I could see the plot of this book being stretched out across a further book (although not two) if the author truly wanted to write more than one book. Now that book one has finished, I feel that there is not much more space to go with the next two in this trilogy.

This book was a relatively enjoyable read, but I will probably only continue the series if I run out of other books to read, which is a very low possibility with me. Not my least favourite series, but I’m by no means in a rush to find out what happens next.


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