Author: Beth Revis (author website)
Release Date: January 10th 2012 by Razorbill
Age Group: Young Adult
From the very first chapter of Across The Universe, I was hooked, and months later I was still haunted by the gorgeous writing, eerie stillness and quiet menace onboard Godspeed. So to say I had high expectations for A Million Suns would be a tiny bit of an understatement. As if I expected anything else from the brilliant Beth Revis--A Million Suns delivers without missing a beat.
Godspeed was fueled by lies. Now it is ruled by chaos.
It's been three months since Amy was unplugged. The life she always knew is over. And everywhere she looks, she sees the walls of the spaceship Godspeed. But there may just be hope: Elder has assumed leadership of the ship. He's finally free to enact his vision - no more Phydus, no more lies.
But when Elder discovers shocking news about the ship, he and Amy race to discover the truth behind life on Godspeed. They must work together to unlock a puzzle that was set in motion hundreds of years earlier, unable to fight the romance that's growing between them and the chaos that threatens to tear them apart.
In book two of the Across the Universe trilogy, New York Times bestselling author Beth Revis mesmerizes us again with a brilliantly crafted mystery filled with action, suspense, romance, and deep philosophical questions. And this time it all builds to one mind-bending conclusion: They have to get off this ship.
From this point onwards, there are spoilers for bk 1, Across The Universe, but NOT for the book itself. Read AtU first. It's works better if you know nothing. Trust me.
While the first chapter of A Million Suns lacks the abject horror Across The Universe inspired in me, it's equally as shocking in an entirely different way. The quiet menace I mentioned from Across The Universe? It's gone, replaced with panic and unrest verging on chaos. Revis throws the reader right back in the deep end and doesn't miss a beat. Things on Godspeed are not as they seem, and tensions are high. With the removal of Phydus to control the ship's population, there are whispers of revolution, and Elder, while growing into a leader, is out of his depth and not in control. It doesn't help that the people he relies on to run the ship are keeping secrets; it adds to the confusion and mystery, while being simultaneously frightening. There's this scary idea that with each generation of leadership to pass, more and more of the ships purpose and history are lost. If something happens to Elder, what will happen to the ship? If something happens to Doc, who will provide medical care, and who will know the secrets of the Frozens and how to care for them? With the loss of Eldest, how much knowledge has been lost? Elder is struggling to maintain control... Meanwhile, Amy is tracing a series of cryptic clues across the ship that unlock secrets far more terrifying than the current political climate for Godspeed.
Across The Universe left Amy and Elder in a rather ambiguous place, and A Million Suns picks up from there. Amy is trying to forgive Elder. She has no one else on the ship in whom to confide or turn, and she desperately misses her parents, her life as she understood it. She's in constant danger as the resident 'Freak'. Rather than attaching herself to Elder, she considers her future and considers her options. Despite it being an easy choice, she refuses to jump into something 'more' with Elder. She asks herself what she wants and what she needs. She thinks, she considers, and I loved her for this.
I loved the shifting POV in Across The Universe, and I loved it again here. Both for the contrasting outsider/insider views of the workings of Godspeed, and watching Amy and Elder grow closer. The concern Elder feels for Amy is touching, but it's at odds with the responsibility and obligations he has to the whole population of Godspeed. Meanwhile, the reluctance Amy feels towards something more with Elder is beautifully done. Neither Amy or Elder are entirely forthright with each other, but despite hurt, complications, and a far bigger picture, Revis shows a slow, beautiful unthawing of each to the other, and when they start to work together, it's a beautiful thing... Before it all spirals back out of control. Both Amy and Elder grow in A Million Suns, and we saw more of themselves shining through. Both are very imperfect beings, and make more than their fair share of mistakes, and I found myself at turns loving and hating them. Amy's stubborn and headstrong, but this can turn to selfishness at times. Meanwhile, Elder is impulsive, and this gets him in hot water on more than one occasion.
The Verdict:Things onboard Godspeed get ugly in A Million Suns. And messy. And stay as beautiful, twisty and frightening as they always were, while only increasing in menace and intensity. I didn't think it was possible to up the ante any further following Across The Universe, but Revis pilots her ship with the effortless ease of a pro. She gives us this brilliant balance between human emotion and fallibility, sweet romance and action and mystery.
Just as beautifully written, frightening and atmospheric as it's predecessor, A Million Suns ratchets up the mystery and intrigue to almost unbearable levels. Revis delivers a sci-fi come Dystopian masterpiece that will thrill fans and leave them desperate for more. Now... To figure out how cryogenically freeze myself so I can survive the year-long wait for Shades Of Earth...
Books in This Series:
- Across The Universe
- A Million Suns
- Shades Of Earth (expected 2013)