6

I Like Dragons! Seraphina by Rachel Hartman

Well hi there!

Have I told you how much I love audiobooks? Well, I do! So, let’s talk about an audiobook I recently finished, Seraphina by Rachel Hartman, because it’s really stinkin’ good!Seraphina by Rachel Hartman

Seraphina Dombegh has reason to fear both sides. An unusually gifted musician, she joins the court just as a member of the royal family is murdered—in suspiciously draconian fashion. Seraphina is drawn into the investigation, partnering with the captain of the Queen’s Guard, the dangerously perceptive Prince Lucian Kiggs. While they begin to uncover hints of a sinister plot to destroy the peace, Seraphina struggles to protect her own secret, the secret behind her musical gift, one so terrible that its discovery could mean her very life.

So, I love fantasy but when I first read the summary for Seraphina I thought, “Dragons? Hmmm….not really my thing…”. So, I hesitated and didn’t read it. Then, I heard great things from other book bloggers and decided that it was time to read it, dragons and all.

I am so glad I did! I think I like dragons! Seraphina was a beautiful story of a girl with great talent but also a potentially dangerous secret. Hartman is definitely skilled at building a fantasy world. Everything from the society’s history, religion, customs, philosophy, fashion and music was so richly constructed. Seraphina’s world draws you in and quickly engulfs you.

I was attached to and loved Seraphina as a heroine. She is intelligent, brave, determined, sensitive, kindhearted, witty and easily able to connect with. If I lived in this made up fantasy land I think we’d hit it off pretty well. :) Her growth as a character comes with learning to accept her whole self and trust those who love her. All the supporting characters are three-dimensional as well, in the beginning I wasn’t sure if I liked Princess Glisselda, for example, but she greatly evolves throughout the story from a giddy princess to a mature young woman.

And there is romance. Yes…that’s right. *winks*

I didn’t realize until I finished reading that Seraphina is the first book in a series and that Dracomachia, book two, is slated to be released this coming July! YAY!!!

I feel like Seraphina is a little bit of a mix between Libba Bray’s The Gemma Doyle trilogy and Fire by Kristin Cashore – it just has similarities while also being its own story. So, if you were a fan of either books mentioned above, or you’re just a fantasy fan you’ll probably love Seraphina like I did!

Author: Rachel Hartman

Publisher: Listening Library (July 10, 2012)

Format: Audiobook

Length: 13 hrs and 15 mins

Narrator(s): Many Williams and Justine Eyre

Series: First in the Seraphina series

YA/MG: YA/MG

Buy the Book: Seraphina

11

Majorly Creepy In a Fun Way: The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson

Hi there!

Sometimes there are books that intrigue you so much you push past your fear of it being super creepy and read it anyway.  Well, that’s how I felt about Maureen Johnson’s The Name of the Star, but I read it anyway and in the end I LOVED IT!

The Name of the Star by Maureen JohnsonThe day Louisiana teenager Rory Deveaux arrives in London marks a memorable occasion. For Rory, it’s the start of a new life at a London boarding school. But for many, this will be remembered as the day a series of brutal murders broke out across the city, gruesome crimes mimicking the horrific Jack the Ripper events of more than a century ago.
Soon “Rippermania” takes hold of modern-day London, and the police are left with few leads and no witnesses. Except one. Rory spotted the man police believe to be the prime suspect. But she is the only one who saw him. Even her roommate, who was walking with her at the time, didn’t notice the mysterious man. So why can only Rory see him? And more urgently, why has Rory become his next target? In this edge-of-your-seat thriller, full of suspense, humor, and romance, Rory will learn the truth about the secret ghost police of London and discover her own shocking abilities.

Like I said earlier, I really, really loved this book despite being hesitant to read it. Honestly I was totally surprised at how much I was enjoying it while I was reading it.  Yes, it was majorly creepy at times; in fact there was one scene in particular that had me closing my blinds earlier than usual!

Part of the reason I liked The Name of the Star as much as I did, was because  my husband and I had just gotten back from a trip to London (first time ever!).  I was especially excited to listen to the descriptions of a city I had literally just visited a few weeks before. Johnson’s description of the London Underground was spot on and had me replaying descriptions for my husband as well! And as always, a boarding school book never lets me down. I don’t know what it is but stories where the main character is away at boarding school are always so much more fun than regular school!

I really connected with Rory, the main character.  She was witty and eccentric and sincerely kind – the type of person I’d like to be friends with. Plus she is from the south and living in Florida I totally understood her story about the alligator moving towards her!

Historical fiction is a genre I really like and Johnson’s mix of the paranormal plus historical fiction was wonderful. The myth surrounding Jack the Ripper, such a mysterious and fascinating character, is not something I knew a lot about before reading The Name of the Star. The book prompted me to look up more information online, which was equally fun and terrifying!

I listened to The Name of the Star on audiobook and strongly recommend it to those of you on the hunt for a good one. The narrator Nicola Barber was one of the best I’ve heard in a while, so I plan to look for others read by her. All in all, go ahead and read this one, it is a mysterious and creepy young adult thriller, but in a fun way!

Author: Maureen Johnson

Publisher: Brilliance Audio (September 29, 2011)

Format: Audiobook

Length: 9 hrs and 50 mins

Narrator(s): Nicola Barber

Series: First in The Shades of London series

YA/MG: YA

Buy the Book: The Name of the Star (The Shades of London)

11

Too Many Chances: Fallen by Lauren Kate

Hi!

I try to give every book I read a fair chance even if it’s just not doing it for me. Sometimes, you give a book so many chances that you end up reading the whole Fallen by Lauren Katething even though every minute is painful. Unfortunately that’s what happened with Fallen by Lauren Kate. So, this review will be short because I just don’t have much to say.

There’s something achingly familiar about Daniel Grigori.Mysterious and aloof, he captures Luce Price’s attention from the moment she sees him on her first day at the Sword & Cross boarding school in sultry Savannah. He’s the one bright spot in a place where cell phones are forbidden, the other students are all screw-ups, and security cameras watch every move. Even Daniel wants nothing to do with Luce – he goes out of his way to make that very clear. But she can’t let it go. Drawn to him like a moth to a flame, Luce has to find out what Daniel is so desperate to keep secret…even if it kills her.

Fallen has been out for a while, and I kept hearing incredibly mixed reviews on it. After passing it up a few times at my library, I finally decided it was time to give it a try for myself. I usually like to read the book myself and decide if I liked it or not.

I really wanted to like this one, but throughout the whole book I kept telling myself things like “Maybe it gets better” and “It must get better” “Surely it’ll get better!”.

Nope.  It didn’t.
The story itself had potential to be interesting. It really did…if only the poor writing wasn’t so distracting! Seriously, there were times were I found myself laughing out loud at some of the clichés!  I wish I had written some of them down… but that’s really besides the point.

My main complaint deals with how things are done.  When I read a book I want to be shown how the characters are feeling, not told how they feel.  There is a difference and it’s hard to explain but I know it when I read it. Throughout Fallen I kept being told that Luce feels a specific way, but her actions and words illustrated something completely different.

The audiobook narrator wasn’t horrible.  She did a decent job for what she was given.  Oh well, you can’t win them all.

Just because I didn’t like this book doesn’t mean others wont enjoy it. I have a group of 8th grade girls at school who are love this series and are made that I actually only have one copy of each book in my media center! So, the moral of the story is don’t take someone’s word for it. It is okay to try it for yourself.  The problem comes when you know it’s just not for you but you’re so afraid to DNF that you end up reading the whole thing hating it as you do.

Author: Lauren Kate

Publisher: Delacorte Press (Dec. 8, 2009)

Format: Audiobook

Length: 10 hrs and 56 mins

Narrator(s): Justine Eyre

Series: First in the Fallen series

YA/MG: YA

Buy the Book: Fallen

6

A Teenage Ocean’s Eleven: Heist Society & Uncommon Criminals by Ally Carter

Well, hi there! Welcome back!

Ally Carter is one of my favorite authors. I will read anything she writes, which is why I read the first two books in her Heist Society series, Heist Society and Uncommon Criminals. I read Heist Society a while ago, but apparently never posted a review of it (I couldn’t believe it!), so this post is a dual review!

Heist Society by Ally CarterWhen Katarina Bishop was three, her parents took her on a trip to the Louvre…to case it. For her seventh birthday, Katarina and her Uncle Eddie traveled to Austria…to steal the crown jewels. When Kat turned fifteen, she planned a con of her own—scamming her way into the best boarding school in the country, determined to leave the family business behind. Unfortunately, leaving “the life” for a normal life proves harder than she’d expected.

Soon, Kat’s friend and former co-conspirator, Hale, appears out of nowhere to bring Kat back into the world she tried so hard to escape. But he has a good reason: a powerful mobster has been robbed of his priceless art collection and wants to retrieve it. Only a master thief could have pulled this job, and Kat’s father isn’t just on the suspect list, he is the list. Caught between Interpol and a far more deadly enemy, Kat’s dad needs her help.

For Kat, there is only one solution: track down the paintings and steal them back. So what if it’s a spectacularly impossible job? She’s got two weeks, a teenage crew, and hopefully just enough talent to pull off the biggest heist in her family’s history–and, with any luck, steal her life back along the way.

Both Heist Society and Uncommon Criminals are fun, smart capers Uncommon Criminals by Ally Cartermixed in with teenage girlness (is that a word?). I loved watching the plan unfold, it’s like reading a teen version of Ocean’s Eleven.  The characters are all in the know about what is about to happen, but the reader doesn’t discover the plan in its entirety until it is actually occurring, which makes for an exciting read.

I like Katerina Bishop, but don’t always understand why she does what she does. My only complaint with this series is that I don’t “get” why she pushes people away and thinks she has to do things alone. I know her mother died, but I guess I haven’t seen the connection yet.  Maybe more of that will be explained in the next book?

I listened to both Heist Society and Uncommon Criminals on audiobook. The narrator is fun, and although her Scottish accents sometimes slip, she does a pretty good job with the different voices. So, I recommend this series if you’re a fan of Ally Carter or just looking for an entertaining read!

Author: Ally Carter

Publisher: Brilliance Audio

                       Heist Society (Feb. 9 2010)

                       Uncommon Criminals (June 21, 2011)

Format: Audiobook

Length: Heist Society (6 hrs and 6 mins)

                Uncommon Criminals (6 hrs and 47 mins)

Narrator(s): Angela Dawe

Series: First and second in the Heist Society series

YA/MG: YA/MG

Buy the Book: Heist Society

Uncommon Criminals (A Heist Society Novel) (Heist Society Novels (Quality))

3

Lush, Fierce and Romantic: The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater

Well hey there!

I don’t know how to even review The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater. I loved it that much!

It happens at the start of every November: the Scorpio Races. Riders attempt to keep hold of their water horses long enough to make it to the finish line. Some riders live. Others die. At age nineteen, Sean Kendrick is the returning champion. He is a young man of few words, and if he The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvaterhas any fears, he keeps them buried deep, where no one else can see them. Puck Connolly is different. She never meant to ride in the Scorpio Races. But fate hasn’t given her much of a chance. So she enters the competition — the first girl ever to do so. She is in no way prepared for what is going to happen.

Seriously, my feelings for this book are so much that I am feeling a little stumped at what to say about it.  How do I describe my feelings on a book I loved so much?!

What I can say is that while I also liked Stiefvater’s Wolves of Mercy Falls trilogy, The Scorpio Races is miles above those books. Stiefvater’s writing is hypnotic and mesmerizing. The rhythm of her words hold the reader captive from the very start. There were times where The Scorpio Races felt more like a story told around a campfire than a written novel. The audiobook, which had two narrators (one for Puck and one for Sean) was so well done that it added to this story-telling feel.

The fictional island of Thisby is lush, fierce, and romantic. The perfect setting for the romance that stirs between Puck and Sean and the terror of the capaill uisce (which are terrifying and heartbreaking all at once). I automatically fell in love with both Sean and Puck. Their emotions, and personalities feel so real. Puck is wildly stubborn and incredibly vulnerable, and she struggles between being a child and an adult. She wears her insecurities and strengths on her sleeve and is by far the most interesting character I’ve read all year! It’s almost as if the internal conflicts Puck and Sean deal with are mirrored in the capaill uisces’  dangerous, yet beautiful natures.

And Sean Kendrick?  Wow.  The strong silent, sexy type.  Yeah. That’s right.

If you haven’t read Maggie Stiefvater’s The Scorpio Races, you most definitely should. It was by far one of my favorite books read in 2012! It listed as YA, but I think middle grades readers will fall in love with it as well.

Author: Maggie Stiefvater

Publisher: Scholastic Audio (October 18, 2011)

Format: Audiobook

Length: 12 hrs and 6 mins

Narrator(s): Steve West, Fiona Hardingham

Series: Standalone

YA/MG: YA/MG

Buy the Book: The Scorpio Races

2

All I Felt was “Like”: Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Lani Turner

Hello!

After a long time of making up my mind, I recently read Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Lani Turner.

Daughter of Smoke nd Bone by Lani Taylor

Around the world, black hand prints are appearing on doorways, scorched there by winged strangers who have crept through a slit in the sky. In a dark and dusty shop, a devil’s supply of human teeth grows dangerously low. And in the tangled lanes of Prague, a young art student is about to be caught up in a brutal otherwordly war.

Meet Karou. She fills her sketchbooks with monsters that may or may not be real; she’s prone to disappearing on mysterious “errands”; she speaks many languages—not all of them human; and her bright blue hair actually grows out of her head that color. Who is she? That is the question that haunts her, and she’s about to find out. When one of the strangers—beautiful, haunted Akiva—fixes his fire-colored eyes on her in an alley in Marrakesh, the result is blood and starlight, secrets unveiled, and a star-crossed love whose roots drink deep of a violent past. But will Karou live to regret learning the truth about herself?

Like I mentioned before, it took me a while to make up my mind about reading Daughter of Smoke and Bone. For months I’d heard nothing bad (literally I don’t think I’ve ever seen a negative review) about this book! Eventually I realized that since everyone else loved this story so much I needed to give it a try. So I did.

So there I was listening to the audiobook, really enjoying the characters and the story. I really liked Karou and I was intrigued by the characters, especially Brimstone, Twiga and Yasri. I was getting really excited about the connection between Karou and Akiva too! I was diggin’ this book (yes diggin’).

Then about halfway through, I hit the plot twist and unfortunately that’s when the story lost it for me. I can’t tell you exactly why, because it has a lot to do with the plot itself, and I don’t want to give anything away for those of you who hadn’t read it.  I just lost interest. This whole second half of the story isn’t bad. In fact I do think it is super creative.  It just wasn’t my thing.

I really, really wanted to LOVE this book and in the end all that I felt was “like”. I know that tons of others people love Daughter of Smoke and Bone so please don’t cross it off your list if you’ve been thinking about reading it, because it may actually be something you really enjoy!

Author: Lani Taylor

Publisher: Hachette Audio (Sept. 27, 2011)

Format: Audiobook

Length: 12 hrs and 32 mins

Narrator(s): Khristine Hvam

Series: First in a series

YA/MG: YA

Buy the Book: Daughter of Smoke & Bone (Daughter of Smoke and Bone)

2

A Classic Fairy Tale Whodunit: A Tale of Two Castles by Gail Carson Levine

Well hello there!

It’s been a while since I posted a review, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been reading! Work and life just got so busy that I had time to read, but not blog about what I was reading!  But I’m back!

Recently I listened to the audiobook of A Tale of Two Castles by Gail Carson Levine, and I highly recommend it!

A Tale of Two Castles by Gail Carsen LevineMysteries abound, especially in Two Castles. A handsome cat trainer, black-and-white cats, thieves on four legs and two, suspicious townsfolk, a greedy king, a giddy princess, a shape-shifting ogre, a brilliant dragon. Which is the villainous whited sepulcher?

Elodie journeys to the town of Two Castles to become a mansioner—an actress—but luck is against her. She is saved from starvation by the dragon Meenore, who sends her on a dangerous mission inside the ogre’s castle. There, disguised as a kitchen maid at an ogre’s feast, she finds herself cast in the role of a lifetime and pitted against a foe intent on murder.

Newbery Honor author Gail Carson Levine weaves an entrancing tale of a fearsome ogre, a dragon detective, and a remarkable heroine, who finds friendship where she least expects it, learns that there are many ways to mansion, and discovers that goodness and evil come in all shapes and sizes.

Gail Cars0n Levine never lets me down! I adored this book! Fairy tales are one of my favorite genre and this one is so unique because it is a fairy tale murder mystery. Seriously there is so much fun medieval fairy tale stuff in this book, mixed in with intrigue and is a classic “whodunit”.

Teenage Elodie is our enchanting main character who travels to a new city in search of the chance to become an actress. I really fell for Elodie right away with all her naivety, intelligence, creativity and boldness. She is funny, sweet and strong main character. In fact, she is the only character who is exactly as she seems.

All in all this is a middle grades murder mystery set in a fabulous fairy tale setting, where Elodie must figure out who is truly deserving of her trust. Fans of Levine’s previous titles (especially Ella Enchanted) will really enjoy A Tale of Two Castles. Also, if you’re looking for a well narrated audiobook, definitely pick up this one! The narrator, Sarah Coomes, had some great voices, especially the one for the dragon Meenore!

Author: Gail Carson Levine

Publisher: HarperTeen (May 10, 2011)

Format: Audiobook

Length: 8 hrs and 27 mins

Narrator(s): Sarah Coomes

Series: standalone

YA/MG: MG

Buy the Book: A Tale of Two Castles

3

Where the Fiction Stops and the History Begins: Revolution by Jennifer Donnelly

Hello!

About a year ago a librarian friend recommended Revolution by Jennifer Donnelly to me.  I had pretty much forgotten about it until I saw the audiobook at my local public library! (Yay publib libraries!)

Andi Alpers is on the edge. She’s angry at her father for leaving, angry at her mother for not being able to cope, and heartbroken by the loss Revolution by Jennifer Donnellyof her younger brother, Truman. Rage and grief are destroying her. And she’s about to be expelled from Brooklyn Heights’ most prestigious private school when her father intervenes. Now Andi must accompany him to Paris for winter break.  Alexandrine Paradis lived over two centuries ago. She dreamed of making her mark on the Paris stage, but a fateful encounter with a doomed prince of France cast her in a tragic role she didn’t want—and couldn’t escape.
 
Two girls, two centuries apart. One never knowing the other. But when Andi finds Alexandrine’s diary, she recognizes something in her words and is moved to the point of obsession. There’s comfort and distraction for Andi in the journal’s antique pages—until, on a midnight journey through the catacombs of Paris, Alexandrine’s words transcend paper and time, and the past becomes suddenly, terrifyingly present.

I was super obsessed with this audiobook! Honestly, I’m always a fan of historical fiction but Revolution added a whole new level of coolness to a genre I already love.

So, as a history major in college, I already knew a good deal about the French Revolution, but I’d never heard the story and controversy surrounding Louis-Charles, the youngest son of Marie Antoinette and Louis XVI.  Holy crap what a crazy intriguing story to use as the catalyst for Andi’s self discovery and healing!

Donnelly’s weaving together of the modern and historical narratives seriously made me wonder where the fiction stops and the history begins.  I love it when historical fiction is written that well! After finishing the book I spent at least an hour scouring websites searching for more information on the French Revolution and the story of the “Lost Dauphin”.

The story was awesome, but I did have a difficult time connecting to the super tough, broken and distraught Andi. She actually intimated me upon first meeting her in the beginning of the book! If I met Andi in real life I’d be way to scared to even be within 5o feet of her! But, I do think that’s the point.  When we meet her in the beginning of the story, she isn’t who she was meant to be. She is instead a brittle, prickly shell of her self struggling with intense guilt.

As I mentioned before I listened to the audiobook and loved it.  There were two narrators, one for Andi and one for Alexandrine and both were consistent because that’s a huge thing for me!

Revolution is most definitely Young Adult, not middle grades, but I do think some mature middle schoolers could read it. I was really, really captivated by this book and highly recommend it to anyone looking for a good historical fiction read!

Author: Jennifer Donnelly

Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers (October 12, 2010)

Format: Audiobook

Length: 15 hrs and 1 min

Narrator(s): Emily Janice Card and Emma Bering

Series: standalone

YA/MG: YA

Buy the Book: Revolution

1

Putting the Spy Skills to the Test: Out of Sight, Out of Time by Ally Carter

Welcome back!

It’s time to talk about the newest installment in one of my favorite YA series out there! I Out of Sight, Out of Time is the fifth book in the Gallagher Girl series by Ally Carter.

The last thing Cammie Morgan remembers is leaving the Gallagher Academy to Out of Sight, Out of Time by Ally Carterprotect her friends and family. But when Cammie wakes up in an alpine convent and discovers months have passed, her memory is a black hole. The only traces left of Cammie’s summer vacation are the bruises on her body and dirt under her nails. All she wants is to go home. But even the Gallagher Academy now holds more questions than answers as Cammie and her friends face their most difficult challenge yet. With only their training and a few clues to guide them, the girls go in search of answers on the other side of the world. But the Circle is hot on their trail and will stop at nothing to prevent Cammie from remembering what she did last summer.

So, we know that the Gallagher Girls are really cool and really fun (I still want to be a Gallagher Girl so bad!!!), but in Out of Sight, Out of Time we get proof that these spies in training are tougher and stronger than they originally appear.  Because this is the most serious and dangerous of all five books, we get to see Cammie and her friends really put their spy skills to the test.

Ally Carter is one of my favorite authors because I am convinced she can do anything.  She successfully takes a dark plot involving a terrorist group and a girl’s amnesia and manages to mix in the perfect amount of light-hearted fun and humor that I love about the other books. It’s a good mimic of real life in difficult times.  I read a quote somewhere, although I’m not sure where anymore, that basically said, “sometimes you have to laugh to keep from crying”.  Boy is that the truth!  I love how Carter brings this truth to life in this series, with this book in particular.

There were some major questions answered in Out of Sight, Out of Time, but there is still so much that Cammie and her friends (us too!) have to learn and do in order to move on and potentially put an end to this scary cat and mouse chase. I cannot wait for Carter’s next (and possibly last?!?!) in the Gallagher Girls books and I recommend this series to anyone looking for an awesome action packed read! Also, if you’re looking for a good series to listen to on audiobook, check this one out because the narrator Renee Raudman (who does the whole series) does a great job!

Author: Ally Carter

Publisher: Brilliance Audio (March 20, 2012)

Format: Audiobook

Length:  7 hours, 42 minutes

Narrator(s): Renee Raudman

Series: Fifth book in the Gallagher Girls series

YA/MG: YA/MG

Buy the Book:  Out of Sight, Out of Time (Gallagher Girls)

4

My Type of Sci-Fi: Across the Universe by Beth Revis

Hey there!

Let me start by saying that I’m pretty much kicking butt in my personal goal for the 2012 YA Audiobook Challenge! I am participating in the Head Bangin’ Level which means I need to listen to 36+ YA audiobooks and review at least 24 of them.  I’m already on 19 reviews and it is still August!  Today’s review of Beth Revis’ Across the Universe is number 20!Across the Universe by Beth Revis

Seventeen-year-old Amy joins her parents as frozen cargo aboard the vast spaceship Godspeed and expects to awaken on a new planet, three hundred years in the future. Never could she have known that her frozen slumber would come to an end fifty years too soon and that she would be thrust into the brave new world of a spaceship that lives by its own rules.

Amy quickly realizes that her awakening was no mere computer malfunction. Someone-one of the few thousand inhabitants of the spaceship-tried to kill her. And if Amy doesn’t do something soon, her parents will be next.

Now Amy must race to unlock Godspeed’s hidden secrets. But out of her list of murder suspects, there’s only one who matters: Elder, the future leader of the ship and the love she could never have seen coming.

Science Fiction is a genre I’m not used to saying I like yet.  I do like it, but I didn’t for so long because I think I always thought science fiction looked like this:

Now don’t get me wrong, some people may really enjoy this specific type of sci-fi which strange-looking space creatures and aliens interacting with humans, but it’s not my thing. I’m more into the humans in the future with really cool technology and/or living in space type of sci-fi, like this: Firefly

Across the Universe fits perfectly into my preferred type of sci-fi.  You have people living in the future on a spaceship, in…SPACE! Plus there is all sorts of cool technology, even if it is sometimes used unethically. I don’t want to give too much away, but the idea that people would choose to be cryogenically frozen in order to populate a new planet 200 years into the future is awesome. There is this whole underlying theme of genetics and ethical decisions with a tad bit of dystopian leadership thrown in. I actually find all of the genetic meddling that goes on throughout the story to be an incredibly realistic possibility for the future. Revis manages to pinpoint both the coolness and creepiness factors of genetic science and technology.

At its heart though, Across the Universe, is also your basic murder mystery. Someone is trying to kill the other frozen passengers on the ship and it’s up to Amy and Elder to figure out who is behind it all. The whole point of view switches between Amy and Elder add to the mystery surrounding the ship and what is actually happening on it.  You get a newcomer’s perspective as well as that of one who was born on the ship and is accustomed to its culture.

When it comes to Amy and Elder, both of them frustrated me at times.  I felt like despite what Elder knows about Eldest or how things are run on the ship, he is still so quick to believe what he already knows. But, I guess it is easier to go with what you know rather than the unknown.  And I sometimes wanted to tell Amy to listen to the people around her.  She often just does what she wants without thinking about the consequences and how they affect others. But without this device it can be hard to move a story along.  These flaws didn’t hinder my enjoyment of the book at all, I just wanted to point them out.

The sequel, A Million Suns, was released in January of this year, so I need to get my hands on it because I had fun listening to this one. In fact, I hope the same two narrators (one for Amy and one for Elder) also read for the second book.  Because of some sexual language and scenes referring to “The Season” (oh the infamous season!!) is definitely YA not MG and I’d only recommend Across the Universe to high school aged readers and those like me, who may be a little older!

Author: Beth Revis

Publisher: Penguin Audio (January 11, 2011)

Format: Audiobook

Length: 10 hrs and 11 mins

Narrator(s): Lauren Ambrose and Carlos Santos

Series: First in the Across the Universe series

YA/MG: YA

Buy the Book:  Across the Universe