Previously published on my blog: http://fictionfervor.wordpress.com/2011/04/13/review-across-the-universe-by-beth-revis/
I love books that aren't constrained to just one genre. I like mythological creatures with romance. I like dystopia with the supernatural. I like a little murder mystery tinged with love. I like that. So you can imagine that I was very pleased with the mixture of science fiction, dystopia, mystery, and romance in this novel. The science fiction? Represented through the futuristic feel of this book and the space journey. The dystopia? Represented in how Godspeed was run, under an all-powerful (or almost all-powerful) Eldest. The mystery? Represented in the mystery of who woke Amy from her cryo chamber. And the romance? Ah. Well. Amy and Elder.
In addition to the mixture of genres, the plot was very well developed. I could easily follow along and imagine what it's like to live in a ship with 2312 inhabitants, some of which are Feeders, who provide for the food of the ship, the Shippers, who run the ship, and Elder and Eldest, who control the people. And then add in the new technological developments-the wi-coms that let you communicate with anyone anywhere in the ship, the grav tubes that transport you through the ship, the floppies with huge screens that can hold enormous amounts of information ... You'd think all of that would be overwhelming. But in Across the Universe, you can just fall right into the book.
I loved the characters in this book. Loved. Amy, one of our protagonists, is such a strong female character yet still has that tenderness inside of her that wants to cry for her parents when she realizes that she is alone with strangers. Her passion in trying to find out who is killing the passengers in the cryo chambers and her determination in being accepted in the ship make her one of my favorite heroines. Elder, our other protagonist, is another of our strong characters. Elder has the leadership and courage and heroism that is required of him (he is, after all, the future leader of the ship), yet he still has the average thoughts of the average teenage boy. Also, originally he is obedient and submissive to Eldest; but I loved when he finally stood up to the leader of the ship.
And I haven't even talked about the romance yet. I love Amy and Elder's relationship; though at first, you wouldn't believe that the two could be together, you gradually realize that they're made for each other. I loved how Elder was always honest to Amy. And he always tried to stand up for her and protect her. Now that's the kind of guy I'd like.
The only problem I had with this book was the way the workers were practically brainwashed - so much that they would have sex on command. And the few who weren't brainwashed could pretty much rape someone else, who couldn't even cry out to help because everyone else was brainwashed. It's just a sad, sad world when something like that can happen with no one to stop it.
There were few problems that I could find with this book. Almost everything was written beautifully, developed wonderfully, depicted fantastically ... Practically perfect.show more