Goodreads Summary: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.
Review:I'll admit that I did not expect much when I started this book. The sci-fi, futuristic stuff got me from the beginning, but other than that, it started out pretty slow. And then it all started clicking into place. Suddenly words like Aether and Scire made sense to me. Really, all those new terms were exciting, but terrifying because they were so new. I have never read a book quite like this before, in that this post-apocalyptic world is so different from most. I'm trying to think of something to similar to what happens to earth in this book, but I really can't. So maybe that means I have to get back into that genre. But that aside, once the book got going, it GOT GOING. I cannot wait to see what happens next. Will they actually end up together? Does the Still Blue exist? These are the questions!
Overall, I loved it. Really I did.
At first I was a little skeptical about the protagonist: Aria. I wasn't really sure what to think about her until she had to survive on the outside. And from there, she grew so much as a character. I am honestly so proud of her. I find her to be believable and NOT annoying. Female protagonists have a tendency to annoy me. Weird? Probably. As for Peregrine (yes, his name is awesome), really grew on me, too. Savage or not, he was a sweetheart and I found myself rooting for him from the very beginning. Other than Aria and Perry, there are no *major* characters. I found that a lot of people like Roar, and I can't say I blame them. If you read it, you'll see what I (and everyone else) mean.
So I've read my share of dystopian novels and in my experience, each one sort of brings a new idea to the table. In this case, the idea of a poisoned earth is not new at all. (Currently reading Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep and that deals with the same idea. And it was written in 1996. I'm pretty sure Philip K. Dick is not the first either.) And the idea of living in domes is not new either. What I found interesting was the context it, as well as the language. I was a bit confused in the beginning. I was convinced the Rossi just made up words to make them up. Don't let that stop you unless you really have a problem with it. It came together rather quickly and the lingo became easier to pick up. So that was actually cool. It was a pretty fast-paced book and I really appreciated that. Getting to know the world Rossi created was pretty great and I think she brought it to life fairly well.
Rating: 4 stars
Why: I am totally going to finish this series. I would not mind owning it, except I am currently broke so that might take a while. If I got a copy signed by Veronica Rossi I might just explode because that'd be freakin awesome.
Recommendation: If you're into dystopian or sci-fi stuff I'd definitely suggest this. It's not heavy on romance, but there are a few hints, if that'll satisfy you.
“Oh, this was champ. She’d found herself a Savage prince. Don’t laugh, she told herself. Don’t laugh, Aria.”
“She looked up. 'A world of nevers under a never sky.'
She fit in well then, he thought. A girl who never shut up.”
“Fine," she said, and frowned. Monosyllabicism. An Outsider disease, and she'd been infected.”
“Aria... everyone feels lost and low. It's how a person acts that makes them different”
“If there was no fear, how could there be comfort? Or courage?”
" 'When you say everything happens in the Realms, do you mean everything?'
Aria laughed nervously.'Yes. Especially that. There are no risks in the Realms.'
Roar's smile widened. 'You simply think it and it happens? And it actually feels real?'
'Why are we talking about this?'
'I need a Smarteye,' he said."