Publication Date: January 3, 2012
Source: Received an ARC for review from the publisher
When Under the Never Sky begins, you're thrown into a high tech, enclosed mini-city called a Pod where Aria lives. Because there's not much to do in the Pods, Aria's people use Smarteyes -- which reminded me of a big contact lens for one eye -- to virtually travel into "The Realms." First off, I need to say that the Realms sound so cool! Anything can happen, from underwater parties where people turn into mermaids, attending Medieval balls, to flying across mountaintops. I wish I could visit them :)
But when Aria gets into trouble, she's cast out of her Pod and sent to the Outside World, where the sky is constantly filled with Aether (super intense lightning storms) and people have gone back to more primitive forms of living. Except they're not as primitive as we first think. Some of them have special talents of their own.
Under the Never Sky is fast-paced, full of action, and also has a nice bit of romance. I like how the story is told from two points of views -- Aria's and Perry's -- so I could see and understand what was going on in the world Veronica Rossi created from opposite perspectives. And what a unique world it is! It felt like a mix of science fiction and fantasy, and I think fans of both will love this book.
Aria is a strong, likable female protagonist who will fight to stay alive even when the odds are stacked against her. Perry is a natural leader who will do anything for the people he loves. Combined, they were a great duo to read about. Another thing that made Under the Never Sky stand out was how the romance between Aria and Perry grew throughout the book. There was no "insta-love," which made their relationship realistic and believable. I also loved Cinder's character, and hope to learn more about why and how he is the way he is in the next book.
Under the Never Sky is the first in a series, and there was definitely a cliff hanger at the end that made me want to know more. I loved it and can't wait to see what happens to Aria and Perry as their adventure continues!