Thursday, January 28, 2016

REVIEW: Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi

The first in a series, Under the Never Sky is a futuristic twist on post apocalyptic and dystopian fiction. Aria has spent her entire life in Reverie, one of several enclosed pod communities where remaining humans are kept 'safe' from the dangerous outer wasteland filled with savage cannibals and deadly electrified energy storms. Taught that even the outside air could kill her, Aria is devastated when she learns her entire world is a lie. Exiled from home, she meets an Outsider, Perry, and quickly accepts he is her only chance for survival.

Perry is a hunter for his tribe despite the earth's bleak landscape. He, like some other Outsiders, possesses an inherited gift which enhances the senses--his sense of smell--a keen enhancement in such dangerous terrain.  Perry views Aria as troublesome and fragile but also as a valuable asset as he seeks to find his nephew, kidnapped and held captive in Aria's former home.  These two must form an alliance that blossoms into more if they hope to learn the truth and change their fates.

This is one of those YA series that I've eyed for several years but never had the chance to read. Overall, for me this was just a so-so read.  I have no major complaints; however, this particular book blends into the sea of similar post apocalyptic/dystopian titles that flooded the market over the past several years.  There is good world building, character development and dialogue.  While Aria starts off a bit doe eyed and naive, she adapts and grows throughout the book.  The same can be said of Perry as he learns to broaden his horizons concerning Dwellers and the role he must play for the future of his tribe.

Even though I'm not powerfully enamoured with the series as an immediate must-read, I am intrigued enough to continue on with the series.  I'd like to get more answers to the main plot arc and see secondary characters (i.e. Roar and Liv) get some resolution to their story.  I did listen to this on audio as narrated by Bernadette Flagler who does a nice job; however, I wasn't bowled over by the performance as I am with some of the more dynamic audiobook productions.

Final rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars



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