Customer Reviews for

Across the Universe (Across the Universe Series #1)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

26 out of 27 people found this review helpful.

Incredible Debut YA Sci-Fi Novel -- A Must Read!

WOW! I think this word over and over again throughout the reading of Across the Universe, by Beth Revis. A Young Adult novel, it is literally a murder mystery in space, in a universe that stretches on and on, infinite and vast. And how incredibly lonely it is when stuck...
WOW! I think this word over and over again throughout the reading of Across the Universe, by Beth Revis. A Young Adult novel, it is literally a murder mystery in space, in a universe that stretches on and on, infinite and vast. And how incredibly lonely it is when stuck on a ship traveling in it. Amy is sixteen and lives with her parents on Earth. Her parents are gifted and essential to a world that other gifted members of society are selected to make a journey to. These people will be cryogenically frozen to journey 300 years to this new world to help begin life on that planet. But, Amy is not essential to this new planet. She's a kid, but is permitted to go because of her parents, and is frozen into the 300 year sleep along with her parents on the ship called Godspeed. Fifty years before the intended arrival to this new world, Amy awakes when she is unplugged and separated from her cryo-haven, surviving an attempted murder -- and no one knows who did it. Forced with the reality that she is now living in a small city that exists on the metal ship, where everyone awakens to a fake sun and drinks recycled water, Amy bonds with Elder, also sixteen. This new life is all that she will now have and she is also awake before her parents. She's now alone. Elder is next in line to lead the ship after the current aging leader, known as Eldest, passes on. But, now amidst the safety of a world which doesn't know questions and chaos, someone is starting to kill again, and they're targeting the frozen people hidden in a ship that only a few select people know about. The release date for this book is January 2011, and color me giddy with excitement for how this book will be received by everyone. It has all of the elements that all murder mysteries need, which completely satiated my desire for a good "whodunit," all amidst the realities of space and the cage of Godspeed. I could not put the book down, and my eyes were growing heavy with sleep late into the night as I kept telling myself "just one more page." Each chapter switches between Amy's and Elder's perspective, allowing you to experience each of their own stories. Normally, I tend to like one character more than another when chapters switch like that and want to hurry to get to the next chapter, but not with this one. As each chapter switched characters, I was excited, ready to find out more and uncover the mystery that each of them were facing. I cannot tell you more about the plot without giving anything away - I can only tell you that I loved this book, this story with characters so real and interesting and engaging. I was drawn into their angst, their confusions, and the mystery that they were trying to solve. There is even more to this story, discussions of class systems, prejudice, and other social issues that were fascinating. I admit that I sit on the edge of my seat wishing for 2011 to pass quickly so that I can get my hands all over Book Two -- oh, yes, this is a series! Yes, yes, yes!

posted by NatalieTahoe on October 3, 2010

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Most Helpful Critical Review

5 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

needs a sequel story line felt unfinished

There was almost two main plots, you have the plot of the overall space mission and then you have the subplot of the murders. While one reached a conclusion the other did not. I definitely felt like the ending was abrupt and when i got to the last page I couldn't believ...
There was almost two main plots, you have the plot of the overall space mission and then you have the subplot of the murders. While one reached a conclusion the other did not. I definitely felt like the ending was abrupt and when i got to the last page I couldn't believe that was it. It was very original and hit on some lessons about racism and individual thought. Although there were some sex scenes that seemed odd and forced. Overall I don't think it would make it to my reread list.

posted by mastaspammip on February 6, 2011

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  • Posted October 3, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Incredible Debut YA Sci-Fi Novel -- A Must Read!

    WOW! I think this word over and over again throughout the reading of Across the Universe, by Beth Revis. A Young Adult novel, it is literally a murder mystery in space, in a universe that stretches on and on, infinite and vast. And how incredibly lonely it is when stuck on a ship traveling in it. Amy is sixteen and lives with her parents on Earth. Her parents are gifted and essential to a world that other gifted members of society are selected to make a journey to. These people will be cryogenically frozen to journey 300 years to this new world to help begin life on that planet. But, Amy is not essential to this new planet. She's a kid, but is permitted to go because of her parents, and is frozen into the 300 year sleep along with her parents on the ship called Godspeed. Fifty years before the intended arrival to this new world, Amy awakes when she is unplugged and separated from her cryo-haven, surviving an attempted murder -- and no one knows who did it. Forced with the reality that she is now living in a small city that exists on the metal ship, where everyone awakens to a fake sun and drinks recycled water, Amy bonds with Elder, also sixteen. This new life is all that she will now have and she is also awake before her parents. She's now alone. Elder is next in line to lead the ship after the current aging leader, known as Eldest, passes on. But, now amidst the safety of a world which doesn't know questions and chaos, someone is starting to kill again, and they're targeting the frozen people hidden in a ship that only a few select people know about. The release date for this book is January 2011, and color me giddy with excitement for how this book will be received by everyone. It has all of the elements that all murder mysteries need, which completely satiated my desire for a good "whodunit," all amidst the realities of space and the cage of Godspeed. I could not put the book down, and my eyes were growing heavy with sleep late into the night as I kept telling myself "just one more page." Each chapter switches between Amy's and Elder's perspective, allowing you to experience each of their own stories. Normally, I tend to like one character more than another when chapters switch like that and want to hurry to get to the next chapter, but not with this one. As each chapter switched characters, I was excited, ready to find out more and uncover the mystery that each of them were facing. I cannot tell you more about the plot without giving anything away - I can only tell you that I loved this book, this story with characters so real and interesting and engaging. I was drawn into their angst, their confusions, and the mystery that they were trying to solve. There is even more to this story, discussions of class systems, prejudice, and other social issues that were fascinating. I admit that I sit on the edge of my seat wishing for 2011 to pass quickly so that I can get my hands all over Book Two -- oh, yes, this is a series! Yes, yes, yes!

    26 out of 27 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 1, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    80 chapters - 79 of them are depressing

    Reading Across the Universe is like watching a bad carwreck, you know it's sad but you just can't look away. Among the spaceship's 1,000 + inhabitants are 100 people who have been cryogenically frozen - specialists in the fields of science and military and their family members from earth who will help to start the new planet once they land. But there are problems. Lots of them. Someone has been trying to kill off select frozen people by unplugging their power source and thus making them drown to death, through centuries of breeding incest is rampant on the spaceship and everyone looks the same, the spaceship is being ruled by a Hitler-like dictator who lies and drugs the passengers in order to keep them obedient, history books about earth have been changed to show Kim Jong IL and Hitler as heroes and peacemakers as evil and the one unfrozen victim who was rescued is the only one who can see all the problems and knows the truth but no one believes her. The book was great in a depressing way. I kept wanting to read and find out what else was a lie about the spaceship, some of the secrets were easy to figure out, others were complete shockers. The last chapter ended on a positive note, however this is a series so look forward to the next depressing 79 chapters soon!

    11 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 27, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Very smart Sci-Fi!

    As Amy's father prepares to be cryogenically frozen, he offers her a chance to opt-out and continue living her life as normal on Earth. She chooses to be frozen herself, and follow her parents aboard the Godspeed, to be woken up 300 years in the future on another planet. When she is thawed out, it is extremely painful and 50 years too soon. She quickly makes a friend in Elder, a boy roughly the same age as she is and second in command on the ship. But Amy is from Earth, and her different appearance and behavior does not fit into society on the ship at all. Before long, sinister acts begin happening around Amy, turning allies into suspects. With lies being revealed and secrets being overturned, Amy and Elder hold on whatever truths they hold in themselves.

    Across the Universe is breathtaking science fiction, the kind where I feverishly turn the pages to find out what happens next. One of those books where immediately after the last page is turned, I want to start over from the beginning and read it again. It really is that good. I was hooked right from the start, with the detailed process of being frozen. I am usually pretty squeamish but I could not stop reading. I felt every inch of Amy's claustrophobia and every ounce of Elder's frustration. The futuristic swearing is reminiscent of Battlestar Galactica and works well with Elder's character. Revis goes to great lengths in order to let the reader discover what is what in the world she has created. There are no lengthy passages of exposition. Some aspects are very cool (grav tubes) and others are a little far-fretched (mono ethnicity), but overall the concepts are deeply thought out and well executed. Fans of Maria V. Snyder's Inside Out and Suzanne Collins' The Hunger Games will love this book. I eagerly look forward to more from this author!

    10 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 11, 2011

    Sci-Fi YA for people who don't think they like Sci-Fi or YA.

    I have to admit, I was nervous to read this one. I mean, I LOVE Beth, and we're *friends* online, and even though the blurb sounded cool and this book has had CRAZY buzz and everyone I knew who'd read it had LOVED it and I had no doubt of Beth's talent, there was a teeny, tiny part of me that thought: OMG what if I hate it--what will I say?????????? Especially because...*whispers*...I don't usually like Sci-Fi.

    *pauses while fans of Star Wars and Star Trek and anything else with "star" in the title gasp and race away*

    I know. I'm weird. It's just not my thing--usually. But I'm telling you guys right now--my worries were totally and completely unfounded.

    I LOVED this book. Me--the girl who usually loses interest the second anything is set in space--could not put this book down. Not sure if it's because it's SO well written, or because it's also a dystopian novel squeezed inside all the space stuff, or because Elder and Amy have this wicked chemistry between them, or because it has this great omg-what-is-going-on-I-need-to-know-NOW!!!! kind of mystery--but whatever it is, it's AMAZING. Dark and claustrophobic and tense and full of tons of twists and turns that keep you on your toes. And I love that Beth doesn't go easy on her characters or her readers. She's not afraid to push everyone as hard and as much as she can, so you never know who's safe and who you can trust.

    ACROSS THE UNIVERSE lives up to every bit of the hype it garnered, and I recommend it to anyone--whether you can recite every line from the one and only season of Firefly from memory or whether you're scratching your head right now wondering what the heck Firefly is. Put any preconceived notions you may have about Sci-Fi or Young Adult novels aside and read this book!!!! You will not be disappointed. In fact, I'm fairly certain you'll be blown away. I certainly was.

    9 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 13, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Not What I Expected...

    Across the Universe is like nothing of ever read before, mixing three genres (dystopian, sci-fi and mystery) effortlessly together to create a deeply complex novel that is truly haunting.

    I love how the novel is told in alternating points of view since I think it adds great depth to the story and both main characters, Elder & Amy. Amy is someone I was in absolute awe of, she's just such a strong and brave young woman. I'm not sure if I could have handled half the things that happen to Amy but somehow she never gives in. Elder, though harder to relate to, is perhaps one of the most interesting YA characters I've ever been introduced to. He's someone so desperate for love and the truth that he will tear down everything he believes in to get it.

    Godspeed definitely felt like its own character due to its immense size, structure and over all eeriness. Beth Revis easily made me feel as though I was aboard the ship with its recycled air, florescent lights and huge metal dome, but its not a place that ever feels comfortable.

    I have to be honest in saying that I felt the connection between Amy & Elder, though strong, is one more out of need, then romance. Though their is definitely an attraction between them, its a bit one side and feels more like a growing friendship then anything else. I mean both of them are looking for someone to fill a hole in their lives left empty be the circumstance they find themselves in. I would definitely never say this novel is romantic, so if that's what your looking for this may not be the book for you.

    I also wish the murder-mystery plot had been much more complex and featured more suspects. I felt that it was very easy to figure out who was behind everything and could often see the set up for a reveal very early on, which was both annoying and disappointing

    Though I greatly enjoyed the uniqueness and complexity of the world Beth Revis created, as well as the character of Amy, I found the mystery aspect to be very lacking. I really wished it had been executed better or done differently since the plot realize so heavily on this part of the story. Though not for everyone, I definitely think its worth reading especially if your a fan of Sci-Fi or Dystopian novels.

    5 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 6, 2011

    I Also Recommend:

    needs a sequel story line felt unfinished

    There was almost two main plots, you have the plot of the overall space mission and then you have the subplot of the murders. While one reached a conclusion the other did not. I definitely felt like the ending was abrupt and when i got to the last page I couldn't believe that was it. It was very original and hit on some lessons about racism and individual thought. Although there were some sex scenes that seemed odd and forced. Overall I don't think it would make it to my reread list.

    5 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 2, 2011

    horrible

    What a waste. The plot jumps around, no good resolutions, and no good dystopian society. save your money and time. also the girl saying daddy all the time was extremely annoying and the authors three new curse words were silly. they come up with new profanity but no new other words? ugh.....refund please?!

    4 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 28, 2012

    I Also Recommend:

    Return Worthy

    You know that gamefly commercial where everyone is upset about buying a bad game? That's how I feel about this book. I wish I could take it back. I just might try. If it were anything else I wouldn't hesitate to return something I was so incredibly dissatisfied with. This book shouldn't be any different. The story jumps around a LOT. "Amy" sounds like a young child other than the teenager she is. The "romance" between Amy and Elder seems like a melodrama written by some high school-er based on what they THINK romance is and how they should act. The fake swearing that is useless and does not further the story nor add to the characters personality. It is just completely unnecessary. Then there are the geographical slang words that are used in different contexts only adding to the confusion of their meaning. I shouldn't have to check the urban dictionary because an author doesn't know how to be consistent with their slang. If I could I would give it no stars but I have to give it something to give a review. I am honestly surprised anyone published this piece of mediocre writing.

    3 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 19, 2012

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    3 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 26, 2011

    Magnificent!

    Buying this book was a spur of the moment thing. It was the night it came out and there were no reviews or ratings, but I loved the colors on the cover. I fell in love with this book as soon as I opened it. The engraved symbol, the ship blueprints, everything. I stayed up until 2 in the morning reading it and I just keep reading it and reading it. Even before finishing the whole story it became my favorite. I highly reccomend this book! Some people might not like it, but hey. You can't please everyone.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 1, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    EPIC

    "I want to take her into my arms and hold her tight. But at the same time, I know that is the exact opposite of what she wants. She wants to be free, and all I want is to hold her tight against me."
    ~ Elder

    Across the Universe by Beth Revis suprised me, I normally try to steer clear of Sci-fi or Dystopia books (nothing personal there just usually not my favorite) but this book...was EPIC. Amy is a normal 17 year old girl she has (had) a boyfriend who she loves, and goes (went) to school and all that...but Amy..is going to be frozen for the next 300 years with her parents. She is suppose to awake with her parents, on a new planet, what she's not suppose to do is be woken up 50 years earlier and almost die because someone broke open her case...she is scared, and well freaking out. she cant be re frozen, its too risky, now she must find out who is murdering people on the ship..before time runs out. Across the Universe was much better then i thought it was going to be, the chapters flip back and forth between being in Amy's head and being in Elder's head. I found myself not being able to put this amazing read down, threw out the whole book you cant help but feel like your part of the story, most books that have a mystery in them, are always obivis who did it..but in this book i was kinda stummped. (kinda i knew half of what was gonna happen ahead of time but there was still a HUGE twist) I couldnt help but hate that there wasnt more romance though, it was mainly alot of suspense, mystery, and well just weirdness too. Amy and Elder are both great characters, Amy is strong willed and knows what she wants and isnt afraid to speak her mind, even if it means what she is saying could risk her life...and Elder, he is mesmerized by how different Amy is from everyone and cant keep her off his mind...no matter how much Eldest tells him to stay clear from the "freak" Elder knows she isnt one..in his mind she is nothing but perfect.

    -I was very surprised that this book is going to be a series, when i finished the book i thought it was going to be a stand alone, but YAY for it going to be a trilogy (:!!
    --A Million Suns (Across the Universe #2) By Beth Revis is expected to come out in 2012.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 9, 2011

    meh

    Nothing really new here. Others have done it better both with dystopia and sci fi. Characters were a bit flat. The story could've been great....

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 28, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Review from Blkosiner's Book Blog

    I usually stay away from anything that is too science fictiony, but I heard so many good things about this book and managed to snag a copy from Librarything Early Reviewers program. And let me tell you, about 50 pages in, I completely forgot about genres and devoured Across the Universe.
    The world that Revis has built as well as the rich characters is simply amazing. Well, actually nothing but simple, I was on edge, eager to turn the page to find out why people are acting the way they do, what secrets are being kept and why. I was able to empathize with even the bad guy, because it showed how it could come to those choices and decisions, but I am glad that I was able to cheer when secrets were exposed and things were starting to be set right.
    I like reading from Amy's point of view better than Elder but maybe that is because I am a girl, I am from the same world as Amy or because it started with her POV. I totally understand the why and the necessity of the dual POV, but just thought that I would throw that out there.
    The love story in AtU was well written, and understandable. It did not take the spotlight in the story and on one hand I am very glad for that, but on the other, I wanted MORE.
    AtU is very plot driven, rather than character. I still connected with Amy, and cheered for Elder to rise up. The plot is well paced, creating just enough questions and mystery to keep me constantly turning the page, needing to know more. It is not confusing except in a few places, but that was all for a reason which are revealed in due time.
    I would recommend to give this a try

    3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 22, 2012

    First before I began I just want to say: THIS WAS FREXING BRI


    First before I began I just want to say:

    THIS WAS FREXING BRILLY. THIS BOOK I LOVED IT SO MUCH! HANDS DOWN To this epic well written sci-fi thriller book.

    Imagine being unable to see the sun? Would you forget how the stars looked like? What if you woke up on a cargo within and a spaceship, would you remember how grass felt like? Imagine a life without natural air, or the feel of the wind blowing. Would you remember the color of the leaves during fall?
    The book is about the Amy waking up on a spaceship, Godspeed, she is left to undercover a mystery murder and Godspeed has changed since it launched from Earth. And although the Book Cover seems to shout ROMANCE, well let me point this out it's not the main focus.
    The beginning had so much suspense. I was honestly scared, confused and worried what will happen. I couldn't put the book down. I couldn't imagine how it would be if I were in Amy's position. My god and Elder is one of a kind, stand out guy book character. He isn't your typical macho snarky character. He was his own person. The book is dual-pov of Elder and Amy, and each chapter kept switching between both of them. I would finish one chapter wanting to continue reading what will happen to Amy, but I was so enthralled and eager to continue into the world of Elder's and understand him better. I became so attached to them both, that at times I ached for Amy when she would remember her old life on Earth. I wish I was there to give Amy a hug and tell her Ill help her with this mystery and give her a piece of the life on Earth.

    Congratulations to Beth Revis for making me feel as lost as Amy did. What I loved so much was the fact I felt like I was a foreigner just like Amy. I was so sucked into this world on Godspeed; their lifestyle was so intriguing. They aren't aliens, who are flying in space, but humans just like you, and me but they have been living within a spaceship, and I'll tell you this there world is no way possible compared to ours. My emotions were all over the place, and not the emotions that pour a waterfall of tears, but more like when you are on a roller coaster. The roller coaster momentum is slow and as it rises and comes closer to drop the anticipation, fear, thrill, suspense, builds as you are waiting for that drop. But the fact is through out reading the book I kept feeling I was on a roller coaster that would continue to rise then BAM instead of dropping takes a sharp turn twist rise then drops on full speed.

    As I mentioned before this book isn't mainly focused on a whole love romance plot, although there is an attraction between both characters, but what I enjoyed about this book it was Elder who was more attracted to Amy. She was more reserved but her feels were starting to bloom.

    The dual-povs was written very well and made the story flow smoothly. It was exhilarating to continue on the journey with Amy and adapt to this new environment. Half the time I was wondering would I be as brave as Amy? Would I go complete crazy for the fact I can't see the sun? Or stars? When was the last time I looked at the stars and took in the moment to see how beautiful the art of this world that surrounds us? When was the last time you saw the Sunrise? This book made me realize how much I take the beauty of this world's for granted.

    If you want to read a book that has a dual-pov, and has plenty of originality, a murder mystery then I recommend this book for you.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 27, 2011

    My Favorite Novel!

    This book is unimaginably out of this world, literally. I'm a very picky reader, but when I got my hands on this novel, I read it in just a few hours. The concept is beautiful and you won't regret buying this book. It's got a little bit of everything in it. Emotions, fantasy, greif, anything you can think of. I just LOVE this book and can't wait for the next one, A Million Suns.
    The author herself is so nice and she always keeps up with her fans on facebook. I've talked to her myself once and I also did a project for my college english class based on this novel.
    I'm just totally in love with this series.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 7, 2013

    very cool book!!!

    very cool book!!!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 2, 2013

    What a beautiful story! This series is great for sci-fi fans and

    What a beautiful story! This series is great for sci-fi fans and romance. Must read, it breaks your heart then the next chapter mends it and makes you crave more!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 24, 2013

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    I have seen this book around the blogosphere but I never really

    I have seen this book around the blogosphere but I never really knew what it was about. I was in my Borders one day and I saw it there. So I decided to read the synopsis. It sounded really good so I bought it. I discovered that the back of the book jacket had a blue print of the ship on it and it made me want it even more. I wasn't going to read it right away but it looked really good so I decided to read the first chapter to see if I wanted to read more of it. The first chapter hooked me into this awesome book so much. Beth Revis is such an awesome writer. If this book looks interesting to you then I suggest reading the first chapter and I guarantee you will most likely want to read more. I can't express how much I loved this book. It is one of the best books I have ever read. It intrigued me so much. I didn't know that I would really like a book that takes place in space aboard a spaceship but I guess I really like that genre. This book has so much in it that I just loved. It has lies, murder, inventions, space and a love story. It even has some twists and turns and shocking moments in it that I wasn't expecting at all. This book, even though it takes place in the future, reflects how humans can act and how the passage of time doesn't really make a difference. I loved Amy and Elder as characters. They both had there own personalities that made the book even better. You really got to know them as they tried to figure out what was happening on the ship. I even loved the background characters. They really stuck out to me as great characters even though they were in the background. I am so glad that I read this book right away after I bought it. Overall I give this book a 5 out of 5. It was so fantastic. It is definitly one of my favorite books of 2011 so far. I think everyone should read it and just about everyone will like it. I just loved this book so much, I can not wait for the sequel A Million Suns to come out in January 2012. I can't say anything more positive about this book. I really hope you all go check it out because I loved it so much.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 21, 2013

    Amazing

    This entire trilogy was fantastic! Twists and turns you never expect, a whole lot of mystery, and just a hint of romance.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 16, 2012

    Reader101

    This book is amezing the charets are well set and the setting is amazing. I give the author NO fault on this

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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