BOOK REVIEW – Across the Universe (Across the Universe #1) by Beth RevisAcross the Universe (Across the Universe #1)
by Beth Revis
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But I can think of nothing but the stars.
It is like a piece of my soul had been lost, empty, and it is now filled with the light of a million stars.
They are all that I had ever dreamed of; they are nothing I ever expected.

-Elder

Wow! I really really really enjoyed that. I know it says on the blurb what it’s about, but I guess I didn’t really know what I was stepping into. Lies. Secrets. Corruption. Betrayal. Lust. Knowledge

I think that sums up what this book is about in one way or another. I knew the moment that I teared up after 5 pages that I was going to fall for this book, and fall for it I did. I couldn’t stand to put it down even as life got in the way.

I feel my heart thud-once, hard-and then it’s like a rushing of blood and emotion from my body and I am empty inside, frozen like before, and I see nothing, and I feel nothing, but that’s not true. Because as soon as I think that, I feel again, I feel everything, and I can’t see, I can’t breathe, but I do feel.
And what I feel is rage.
-Amy

Not many times do I really relate to the alternating POV. I think it can be choppy and disjointed and altogether a big fat mess. And even when it mostly works in certain novels, it doesn’t shine or it takes away from the story. In ATU, I never once felt that the author made the end of the chapters choppy. In fact, I’d go as far as to say that the idea of this being in alternating POVs is what made this story so perfect. It really added that extra bit of mystery and intrigue into the story, because even as a mystery was unfolding for one (or both, if they were hanging out together) character, it would switch to the other person and make you wait for the end result, or better yet, tell you what the other person was thinking about the same situation first so you could really grasp the gravity of what was coming.

Eldest thinks power is control, that the best way to be a leader is to force everyone into obedience. Holding Amy against me, I realize the simple truth is that power isn’t control at all-power is strength, and giving that strength to others. A leader isn’t someone who forces others to make him stronger; a leader is someone willing to give his strength to others so that they may have the strength to stand on their own.
-Elder

Amy’s story was heartbreaking. Being frozen along with her Mom and Dad and leaving behind everything you’ve ever known to (eventually) start another life on a new planet would be terrifying. It broke my heart as she waited to be unfrozen so she could be reunited with her family again. All the memories that resurfaced as she lay in wait for the day that the 300 year wait would be over was heartbreaking-but, what’s worse was when she had to say goodbye to them before they were frozen, because who knows if they would even survive despite all the technology and scientists who assure you that nothing bad can happen?

“Wannagogardenwime?” I ask all in one breath. My eyes grow wide. What came over me? Why would I blurt that out like that?
“What?” Amy asks, her smile widening. She leans against the metal table behind her.
“Want to see the garden?” I ask, speaking much slower than my heart is pounding. “With me?”
-Elder

I adored Elder. He is living on a ship of lies and wants to believe that everything he’s ever known is good and right. He has always followed the rules but is more of a free spirit than his (mentor) Eldest would like. Then, one day when a beautiful girl (HIS AGE) is pulled out of her chamber for some reason, even though it isn’t time to unfreeze everyone, he becomes fascinated with this gorgeous girl who is so unlike everyone on the ship. See, everyone has been genetically enhanced or altered or what have you over the generations to look alike so there’s not any difference in appearance…so Amy’s look really appeals to him.

She starts crying. Not soft, sad tears, but the angry sort, like she hates the whole world, or at least the ship that’s now her world. So, I do what any reasonable person would do when faced with a crying girl.
I get the frex out of there.
-Elder

I found that Elder’s attraction to Amy was adorable….he was so fascinated by her because he’s only ever seen people that are older than him and they all look alike, so his inner thoughts about her were so fun to read-especially when he started to become jealous for the first time.

And, oh, I want to show her, but not him, not now, not with her. I want to be the one to give Amy back her stars.
-Elder

Now, while there wasn’t a ton of romance, there was the beginning of something greater. We know based on this review that Elder likes Amy a lot, but one of the things holding Amy back is the fact that she had to leave her first love behind. 250 years later and he is dead and gone-so those memories she gets are both terrible and beautiful, but all for naught.

She wants to be free, and all I want to do is hold her tight against me.
-Elder

So, if I were to say if my friends should read this, I’d say yes. It isn’t typical. It isn’t all cut and dry. It is deceptive. It is fun to try and figure out the mystery of who the ‘killer’ is and who it isn’t. But maybe there’s more than one good guy and maybe there’s more than one bad guy. Maybe Elder is the only person Amy can really trust. Or maybe he’s the one person she shouldn’t trust at all. I dunno…I guess you’ll have to read to find out.

A leader doesn’t make pawns-he makes people.
(you guessed it) -Elder

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