January 19, 2013

Shades of Earth Book Review

As promised, here is my review for Shades of Earth by Beth Revis. Shades of Earth is the third book in this trilogy preceded by A Million Suns and Across the Universe. You can read a bit about the first two books in my blog post here: http://erica-odds-and-ends.blogspot.com/2012/11/time-for-another-book-review-book.html

Another masterful piece of work by Beth Revis. She worked through many challenges including a new setting, new characters, and new conflict. Just like the first two books, Beth Revis finds a plot twist that is entirely unpredictable. Also, I really respect that the ending is the usual "and they lived happily ever after" mentality that I see all too often in other YA novels. Once again, I was dazzled by Beth Revis's work.

As I mentioned earlier, the setting of this book is different from the first two. After living on Godspeed, we now are faced with this new planet, one that holds both great hope and great fear. With suspenseful trepidation, we join Amy and Elder as they explore this breathtakingly exquisite paradise. We learn about the world from both scientists and simple observations. I was pleased that too much time was not spent on every minute detail of the planet. However, I do wish that more emphasis was put on the sky on Centauri-Earth. In the previous books, the stars held hope, beauty, and peril. We learned the secret of the stars while sailing through them. I feel that some revelations could have been made by Amy and Elder while looking at a new sky of stars that would have not only carried the last two books, but also developed this book even more.

With the frozens awake, Beth Revis had to work with a new cast of characters. I like the differences and conflict apparent between the shipborns and frozens from the beginning. I was really impressed with the small scale character development that took place in this novel. It really shaped the fact that each person is a precious individual and leaves no deaths insignificant. Also, Orion was done wonderfully. However, there are a few characters who I believe could have been portrayed a bit differently. First of all, when Amy reminisces about her parents while on Godspeed, she seems closer to her father. In this book, this is reversed. I wish that Amy's father was more understanding. I understand that Beth Revis wanted to establish his militaristic side, but I felt that this was a bit exaggerated. Secondly, I believe that Harley is referenced only once in Shades of Earth. I wish that Amy and Elder had thought more about him. For example, they might have thought about what he would love to paint if he could see Centauri-Earth. It almost seemed that Amy and Elder had forgotten him.

Pace and Plot:
Like all the other books, there was never a dull moment. The pace and plot were brilliant. From tangible action to heart-wrenching decisions, I couldn't put it down.

Unresolved Issues:
Also, there were a couple issues from the first two books that I had hoped would be resolved in Shades of Earth. Mainly, did any of the other frozens dream through the centuries like Amy did? Also, what happened to Victria?

I hope you all enjoyed this book review and I urge to check out this trilogy. And, not sure if she'll ever read this, I want to give a huge thank you to Beth Revis for writing this amazing trilogy!

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