Question of the century: could a book set in NEW Victorian times, with GOOD and BAD zombies prove to be a great read? Yes, yes it sure does!
Lia Habel has an imagination that can rivals Spongebob's (that is a compliment FYI!) Her dystopian world is unlike anything I have ever seen/read about before and I knew just from the summary of the book that I would love this world! One thing about me, I feel very strongly about society/civilization/government, I believe that the dystopian worlds authors write about can actually happen any... minute. History proves that every great civilization has collapsed and what makes today's society immune? The idea of society advancing by regressing is not far from realistic, in a state of panic and depression anything is possible and the explanation of how this New Victorian society came to be is highly believable and I didn't question it once.
I also really loved this world. The etiquette, decorum and style of life is beyond fascinating and seeing it combined with advanced technology is a great mix. Onto the paranormal aspects of the book: ZOMBIES! It actually felt more sci-fi then paranormal to me because everything was backed up by science which again, I love because it made everything more believable for the reader.
One thing that bothers me much about paranormal books is if the MC stumbles into an unnatural world and doesn't question it or react properly, Nora (the MC) on the other hand did not magically accept the walking dead only after two paragraphs of finding out about them. She was genuinely shocked to the bone and again, despite the obvious unreal zombies, her reaction realistic! I also liked how Nora didn't immediately become a warrior. She was a girl who albeit knew more about combat and fighting then she should, but she was still raised with decorum drilled in her but upon learning about the zombies she didn't suddenly acquire superman hero skills to defend everyone. Nora knew what was too much for her and when she did, she left matters to the real fighters. Some people might see that as unheroic but I see it as a realistic portrayal of a girl who knows her limits. I love this about Lia Habel's writing, no matter how crazy the world of Dearly, Departed is, she still made me believe it!
This also proves right with the relationship between Bram (the good undead zombie) and Nora. Oh Bram, Bram, Bram, do they sell zombies at Amazon because I want me a Bram!! I loved the pacing of the romance and I can kiss Habel for avoiding the wrecking mistakes of making the main character along with her guy of interest fall in love from the third chapter. I cannot explain the sweet feeling the blossoming this romance gave me, my heart was fluttering! Lia Habel, once again, well done!
Something I noticed that put a lot of people off is the 5 different 1st person narrating voices. I love alternating POV's especially when its between the love interests but I also did not mind the added 3 other POV's. They gave an added insight that otherwise could have been achieved and while I will admit that sometimes I did get confused on who's narrating, it wasn't a big deal to me.
Rating: 4 hearts~ Lia Habel has made a loyal fan out of me! Her dystopian world is one of a kind and I will eagerly and anxiously await more information on Dearly, Beloved the second novel to Lia Habel's fantastically amazing debut- this is a must read!
Across the Universe started solid for me. Beth Revis doesn't hold back on the not so pleasant details of cryo freezing which I LOVE. It was realistic, not sugar-coated and with a book like Across the Universe, modesty will get it no where so I was happy through out the book to see that it didn't hold back on the uglier details (like the season).
Across the Universe rocked until Amy woke up. She is the reason the book got 3 hearts instead of 5. She was the single most annoying main character I had the pleasure to read from. Her actions were idiotic and didn't make sense. The way she stood up against Eldest, was that supposed to be ballsy? It was pure foolishness. (view spoiler)[If someone threatened to throw me out in space, I wouldn't back talk him, specially if I am a stranger in a ship! But that doesn't mean I'm weak, it means I'm cautious! (hide spoiler)] I didn't find it her heroic and I wished she DID get thrown out the ship. The whole thing about protecting her parents was just stupid, what was she going to do when she caught the 'killer'? pull out her gun in defense? She didn't think any thing through and I enjoyed the parts when she was drugged, crying, and in despair. Yes, how cold-hearted! but I really hated Amy, every single action she took made me want to pull my hair out. She complained and disagreed withe everything about the ship and how they lived and while yes I agree with Amy it was wrong, I wanted to scream YOU ARE 250 YEARS IN THE FUTURE YOU IDIOT, OF COURSE TIMES CHANGE AND THEY LIVE DIFFERENTLY! WHAT DID YOU EXPECT?! She signed up for being on the ship, she wasn't forced and she got what she deserved.
At least I liked Elder, he did grow through out the book and his actions were justified and weren't completely moronic. Though I do believe the romance between him and Amy is LUST. All his life he saw the exact same faces then this fiery red head pops up in his life, he's either going to think she's an exotic freak or an exotic beauty, that doesn't equal romance and love. I wish there was more between the two characters and I'm hoping for more in book 2.
All that aside, I liked the world in Across the Universe it was very interesting, from the Eldest system to the season it was all very fascinating. Also, I understood Eldest and the previous Eldest's actions. They did what they thought could get them through the journey and while it wasn't a perfect solution, it was justifiable (unlike a certain main characters idiot thoughts + actions -__-) they just had the best in mind. Even the 'killer's' actions made sense. His/her reason for doing what he/she did were true! (view spoiler)[that the ships passenger were either going to be slaves or soldiers (hide spoiler)] I loved the 'villain's' in this book more then the main characters but in the end, I will be looking forward to book 2, A Million Suns.
Rating: 3 hearts~ had my problems with it, but it's not bad
I had to read this for school and along with The Catcher in the Rye it was my favorite school read. I read it in a few hours it was completely amazingI had to read this for school and along with The Catcher in the Rye it was my favorite school read. I read it in a few hours it was completely amazing from start to finish, I love this genre.