Review: Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi

January 20, 2014 Reviews 18 ★★★½

Review: Under the Never Sky by Veronica RossiUnder the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi
Series: Under the Never Sky #1
Published by HarperTeen on January 3, 2012
Pages: 374
Format: Hardcover
Goodreads
My rating: three-half-stars
Since she'd been on the outside, she'd survived an Aether storm, she'd had a knife held to her throat, and she'd seen men murdered.

This was worse.


Exiled from her home, the enclosed city of Reverie, Aria knows her chances of surviving in the outer wasteland--known as The Death Shop--are slim. If the cannibals don't get her, the violent, electrified energy storms will. She's been taught that the very air she breathes can kill her. Then Aria meets an Outsider named Perry. He's wild--a savage--and her only hope of staying alive.

A hunter for his tribe in a merciless landscape, Perry views Aria as sheltered and fragile--everything he would expect from a Dweller. But he needs Aria's help too; she alone holds the key to his redemption. Opposites in nearly every way, Aria and Perry must accept each other to survive. Their unlikely alliance forges a bond that will determine the fate of all who live under the never sky

I went into this book (and series) with very high expectations. So many people had given it rave reviews and so many of my blogger friends had told me I NEEDED to read it – that it was a must-read and I wouldn’t be disappointed.

Well, I was a little disappointed.

I’m not saying it was bad.. It was still a really interesting book. The plot felt unique and it really held my attention – The science/genetics and technology were really fascinating. The Realms sound very cool! The Aether storms are creepy and feel as though they could happen in a not-so-distant future. The writing was gorgeous, too. Rossi can definitely write! And for me, really great writing can make or break a story. I could despise the story, but if it’s well written and captivating, I’m sold. That’s not to say I’ll jump all over it and recommend it to people left and right – But it makes a slow plot or iffy characters more tolerable.

Things went down-hill, for me, with the characters, mostly. I’m very character driven – if you’ve read a lot of my reviews, you can tell that I focus a lot of my review on discussing the characters. And the characters in Under the Never Sky were.. okay.

Aria was a complicated character for me.. I really liked her but I have no idea why. There was nothing really remarkable about her that made her stand-out. If you asked me, “Why do you like Aria?” I’d shrug and say, “No idea! I just do.” Now.. I really did like her. But.. If I liked her that much, shouldn’t I have AT LEAST one solid reason why? Shouldn’t I be able to say something about her? I mean.. She held her own, but she also didn’t really do anything to help or assist. She was kind of just .. there. But I didn’t dislike her. And she never really had a moment where I was like, “Ugh, she’s getting annoying!” – Nope, that didn’t really happen. Or if it did, it was so insignificant that it didn’t faze me. So.. Yeah. I’m torn on how I feel about her.

Perry.. Guys, don’t hate me, please. While I didn’t dislike Perry, I certainly didn’t like him. The sections of the book that were told in his POV were kind of boring and I just couldn’t connect with him. I did love him with Aria and I can absolutely see them as a couple. I just wasn’t his biggest fan. I’m definitely not swooning over him. Sorry, Team Perry! But maybe he’ll be better in Through the Ever Night?? *Hopeful smile*

One of my absolute favorite characters was Roar. I loved him so much, from the minute we were introduced to him. I love his playful personality, his slightly cocky attitude (which, he’s mostly cocky in a cute and funny way). I’m SO RELIEVED he’s not a part of a love triangle with Aria and Perry, but I love the friendship he has with Aria. Also, as a side-note? I’m relieved that Aria and Perry weren’t all insta-love-ish. There relationship definitely had a slow build-up.

Overall, the story was very slow-moving – and, at times, borderline boring. It came in waves – a huge chunk of the book was slow and boring, then a huge chunk was interesting, etc. Most of the story was just build-up and back-story meant to get us from book one into book two. Which was weird, because usually it’s the second book in the series that does all that, in an attempt to build up to an “epic” conclusion in book three (if it’s a trilogy). It’s called Second Book Syndrome. Yet.. book one had that this time. So.. Kinda weird. I would still recommend this book and I’m definitely pushing ahead with book two (which I’m currently reading) because I’ve heard it’s amazing and way better than book one. And supposedly Into the Still Blue (book 3) really IS an epic conclusion.

18 Responses to “Review: Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi”

  1. Denise

    I’ve seen this series everywhere, especially in giveaways, but then at the same I’m seeing not so great reviews. I’m still interested in reading this but I think I’ll wait to hear you find book two, if the pace picks up at all. :)

    Denise @ Dandelionn Wine Book Blog

    • Meredith

      Before I read the book, I had heard nothing but good things. But then when I really looked at the reviews, it was mixed. I liked a lot of things, but I also didn’t like a lot of things, unfortunately. My review for book two, Through the Ever Night, will go up tomorrow morning. I rated it the same as UtNS… But where UtNS is more of a 3, Through the Ever Night was closer to a 4. If you do decide to read them, good luck!

  2. Christy @ Christy's Book Addiction

    I read this when it first came out and while I thought it was good, I was still disappointed. I haven’t picked up the next book in this series but I think I might look for it at my library because like you, I’ve heard it gets better. Great review!

    • Meredith

      The second book was deifnitely better, though I still only rated it a 3.5 :( That review will go live tomorrow morning! If you do read it, good luck and happy reading! :)

  3. Kaitlin

    I know what you mean by liking something without knowing a good, solid reason as to why you like it. I’m actually like this with this entire series. (Well, mostly.) While writing my review of Into the Still Blue, I realized my favorite thing about these books were the characters (quite the opposite of you, huh?). Mostly, though, I don’t know exactly why I liked this series. I just . . . did.

    Great review, Meredith! I hope the rest of the series goes better for you.

    • Meredith

      Thanks! Glad someone understood what I meant! I really felt like that was a vague way to describe Aria, but it’s true. I felt that way with book two, as well! I’m taking a break before Into the Still Blue (I have a tour book to get to), but the fact that you loved the characters so much gives me hope that Into the Still Blue will be amazing! Thanks for stopping by :)

  4. Pili

    I really liked Aria and Perry and Roar!
    The start of the novel was a bit slow for me, but then I completely fell in love with the characters and the story.
    And it continued even more with TTEN and I’m hoping it’ll be even better ending with ITSN.

    • Meredith

      I definitely loved Roar! I liked Aria, I just wish I knew why. Perry.. I couldn’t get on the Team Perry train :( It definitely slow, unfortunately. I finished TtEN and it was only slightly better. Here’s hoping Into the Still Blue is amazing!

  5. Nova @ Out of Time

    This is a series that I haven’t read yet! Grr…

    Glad that you enjoyed it. It received a lot of hype so I have no idea how to react to it. I don’t even know if I’m going to read it lol.

    I liked your review, even though you “didn’t know” why for some points. Hehe! Love ya Mer <333

    • Meredith

      Whoo! I was starting to think I was the only one who hadn’t gotten to it. The hype definitely got to me and I think that’s why it was such a disappointment when I didn’t enjoy it as much as I had thought I would. Yeah.. That was weird. I don’t think I’ve ever had that happen with any other book! Usually I know why I like something, even if it’s just ONE solid reason why. Very strange! Love ya! <333

  6. Abby @ Abbbz and Bookz

    I’ve been stalling to read this book. I already started but stopped at page 30 I think? I am planning to marathon anyways along with the other two in the trilogy. But as far as I’ve read, just like you I can’t feel Aria’s character. Her voice isn’t that striking, but I guess it’s just first impression. I am excited to meet Roar! Great review!

    • Meredith

      I definitely agree with you about Aria. I liked her, but I seriously couldn’t say why. Even in book two, I liked her but… I couldn’t tell you why! She pulls her weight and she isn’t a damsel in distress, but otherwise.. Sigh. Roar is amazing!!! Hope you love him!

  7. Rachel @ the NerdHerd Reads

    I still have not read this series either! It seems like everyone raved about it, or rec’d it to me, which probably turned me off more because I didn’t want to read something with crazy unreasonable expectations. I will have to give it a shot soon tho! I want to meet this Roar ;)

  8. The (YA) Bookcase

    I have to say i’m kind of in the same boat with you! I really liked Under the Never Sky. I enjoyed Perry immensely and I thought the plot was good but not great. I couldn’t really get a feel for where it was going until the very end. It didn’t WOW me but I certainly enjoyed reading it and have recommended it to a lot of people. I will be reading the next two, but haven’t gotten to them yet–hopefully soon! I liked your perspective on the book. You pinpointed how I feel about it but never knew how to describe. Great and thorough review, Meredith!

    • Meredith

      Yup! Everything you said = agree. It was good but it didn’t live up to the hype at all! :( I’ve heard Into the Still Blue was amazing, so I’m hoping for an epic conclusion! We’ll see. Thanks!! I hope you enjoy Through the Ever Night when you get to it! :)

  9. Iris

    Catching up on this series as well huh? I read the first book quite a while ago and I can find myself in your review… Though I did love Perry (not at first! He grew on me throughout the story). I went through some ups and downs while reading this book, but I really liked it nonetheless.

    I need to read the second book soon! Because I want to get to the third book, because (as you mentioned) it is supposed to be an EPIC conclusion!

    Great Review! (and a very Happy Birthday!)

    • Meredith

      Yup! I have an eARC of Into the Still Blue, so I was reading it to get that done before Tuesday but I fell behind and the review will probably be up late Tuesday or early Wednesday :\ This book definitely had its ups and downs! :( The second book wasn’t much better :(

      Thanks!! <3

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