Release Date: January 11, 2011
Review Source: Won from Amber @ Down the Rabbit Hole
Synopsis: (from Goodreads)
A love out of time. A spaceship built of secrets and murder.
Seventeen-year-old Amy joins her parents as frozen cargo aboard the vast spaceship Godspeed and expects to awaken on a new planet, three hundred years in the future. Never could she have known that her frozen slumber would come to an end fifty years too soon and that she would be thrust into the brave new world of a spaceship that lives by its own rules.
Amy quickly realizes that her awakening was no mere computer malfunction. Someone-one of the few thousand inhabitants of the spaceship-tried to kill her. And if Amy doesn't do something soon, her parents will be next.
Now Amy must race to unlock Godspeed's hidden secrets. But out of her list of murder suspects, there's only one who matters: Elder, the future leader of the ship and the love she could never have seen coming.
I could probably sum up my thoughts by saying that this was another book with intense hype, and another one that failed to impress me. One of the main problems I had with the book was its pace. The book was incredibly long, yet I’m positive that all that happened could have been told in a story 2/3 of the size, if not smaller. The pace was so slow, so that even though I generally sped through the book, it was frustrating to me to have to read so long for events to occur.
Another problem I had with the book is that I didn’t really find any of the characters to be that likeable. I felt incredibly (incredibly!) bad for Amy, but there was nothing about her that made me like her that much. And then there’s Elder who just... I have no idea. My final response to him is that he skeeves me out. He’s been brainwashed by the man who raised him, and the society on the ship has customs that are incredibly out there compared to our standards, and somehow he’s still generally a decent guy, which I give him credit for. However, you can’t ignore the fact that there wasn’t much behind his feelings for Amy other than simple lust. He was attracted to her, and because of that he somehow thought he owned her.
The one character who I found absolutely brilliant was Harley. He was so interesting and sweet, and he brought a lightness to the book that didn’t exist elsewhere, and without giving anything away, that was completely ruined. Besides Harley the one other positive of this book was that it made me think a lot while I was reading it. I thought about how individuals and societies could be brainwashed, what it takes to be a good leader, and what it would mean to be trapped in a completely foreign world. But some beautiful descriptions and food for thought don’t make up for the complete genre confusion this book has. I think it just tries to be too many things. It’s not really a complete dystopian, the murder mystery aspect fails to be compelling after the first little bit, and the romance aspect that's so played up? Well, that’s almost entirely lacking.
I realize I sound completely harsh, I just hate how when I came to the end of this book I felt completely empty. It’s taken me so long to write this review, because I ended up not really caring at all about the events of the book or what might happen next. The only thing I wanted was for Amy to have a happy life with her family and to be reunited with all the people she misses on earth which, unless something incredibly wacky happens, can obviously not occur. In that way I give Beth Revis absolute credit for making me feel something so deep for her character, but it was to the detriment of my enjoyment of the book. Some people might enjoy the feelings of complete desolation and hopelessness that the book creates, but personally I just felt depressed and disappointed.
Find Across the Universe by Beth Revis on Goodreads, Book Depository, & Amazon.ca