Shades of Earth by Beth Revis
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I've been sobbing uncontrollably for the last 100 pages or so. I will seriously write more once my tears allow me *fetches more tissues*
What can I say about this series that has not been said before?
Let me just start appropriately. With the beginning.
The first book, Across the Universe, has a lovely title that makes me sing the Fiona Apple's version every time I think about it.
It was a wonderful book. It took me to space, inside a spaceship: Godspeed, and inside the heads of Amy and Elder. A very complicated situation: a mission through space on a spaceship (duh), that will take 300 years, towards a new planet similar to Earth, Centauri-Earth. This story is full of sociocultural dilemmas, monoethnicity, living in a confined space for a VERY long time, cloning, survival and humanity.
It was a cool refresher for the reader of YA books, who wants a break from vampires (gasp, I know, even I sometimes want a break from them), demons and magic. Sci-fi has been a genre I sometimes fail to seek out more.
Smart man Carl Sagan, when he said: Imagination will often carry us to worlds that never were. But without it we go nowhere. This was my ticket to be happily traveling aboard Godspeed.
Across the Universe has the most real-creeptastic cryo-freezing description I've ever read, experienced firsthand by Amy in the Prologue. It gave me the chills just to think back about it again and re-read it:
There was a click, click, grrr of gears, and I knew the flash freezing would start in mere moments, and then my life would be nothing but a puff of white steam leaking through the cracks of my morgue door.
So Amy wakes up. But, things are far more complicated. And we meet Elder, who is apparently the "mini-me" of the leader of the spaceship, Eldest.[It's been longer than 300 years, the spaceship is messed up, people that live there don't know much about the mission, lots of murders, tears, more murders, mysteries, clues to be found, Elder has been doing bad things.... and wow, they had actually arrived to Centauri-Earth long time ago, but no one told them! The lie that the reactor was slowing down, hence they were behind schedule, made me worry a bit at the beginning of the series. Particularly for the scientific inaccuracy: no gravity = no deceleration. But since it ended up being a LIE - they had already arrived- I was able to relax and enjoy this series, making my physics high-school teacher prowd (hide spoiler)]
It is hard to write this down without many spoilers, but from the title, you can imagine that they arrive to their destiny.
Shades of Earth took me completely by surprise. I was not expecting these twists... and the deaths... if you have read her previous novels, I am sure you already know that Beth Revis has no problem killing her characters. Her students (she is a teacher), even beg for her to name some of her characters from their own names, and asked to be killed :)
In Shades of Earh, when the earthborns awake from their freezy state, they add more to the complications the shipborns had and what is happening on the new planet. Ohhhh the events that uncoil are soooo good!
This book was a sob-fest that kept me glued to my chair.
I would definitively recommend this series to the sci-fi fans out there. Yes, it has a romance, but to tell you the truth, I was not very convinced, or moved by it. I was much more interested and intrigued by this wonderful world that Beth Revis plotted.
The universe is a pretty big space. It's bigger than anything anyone has ever dreamed of before. So, if it's just us, seems like an awful waste of space, right?
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