The Body Electric by Beth Revis

The Body Electric by Beth Revis“What if eternity is nothing more than me, alone, in the darkness?”

Ella Shepherd is able to enter people’s dreams and memories using the technology that her mother created. The government finds out what she can do and asks her to spy on a rebel group. The only problem is, the leader of the rebel group knows her and claims that he and she were once in love. Ella has no memory of this and realizes that somebody has been inside her head and erased her memories. Now she can no longer trust anything in her own mind because she doesn’t know if it was real or planted there by someone.

After reading the Across the Universe series, I will read anything that Beth Revis writes. This book did not disappoint me! Ella is able to use the machines that her mother built to go inside people’s mind and by doing so can access their dreams and memories. When the government recruits her to look into the mind a man suspected of being a rebel, she is a little nervous. When she sees a name in his head, it leads her to a boy who claims to have been romantically involved with her. When evidence in his favor begins to pile up, Ella realizes that she has to find out who erased her memories, and why.

I loved the world building in this book. Ella lives on a bridge between two islands. The bridge is miles and miles long, big enough that an entire city is built on it. Underneath the city is the lower class part of the city, which is basically a floating city that is made up of individuals boats. In this futuristic world people have androids, who do all sorts of jobs like cleaning, vending, and nursing. The rebel group is made up of the lower class, who are sick of living in decrepit conditions on their floating city while the upper class lives in luxury with androids doing everything for them. When Ella finds out about her memory being erased, she is suddenly thrown in the middle of a war she didn’t even know was happening.

I loved all of the medical elements of this book–Ella’s parents’ research, especially her father’s, and the ethical questions that both raise. I also really loved how this tied into the Across the Universe series–it’s actually set in the same world, but still on Earth.

Overall, The Body Electric was an exciting and interesting read. Beth Revis has definitely made me a fan for life and I can’t wait to read what she writes next!

The Body Electric was released on October 6, 2014.

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Shades of Earth by Beth Revis

Shades of Earth by Beth Revis

“We all die someday. Maybe the only thing that makes that fact bearable is the idea that death is the only way we can return to the stars.”

Amy and Elder have finally found a way to land on Centauri-Earth. With half of the population of Godspeed, they launch the shuttle and manage to crash land on the surface with hopes of building a new life on the planet. What they didn’t expect was that there would already be life forms inhabiting the planet, along with monsters in the form of pterodactyl-birds. They realize that in order to make a new life on the planet, they will have to find a way to cooperate with the frozens from Earth and fight to keep their new home.

The end to this fantastic series was definitely bittersweet! Across the Universe blew me away when I first read it back in 2011 and the second book in the trilogy, A Million Suns, was even better! Beth Revis is a master at world building, and what is incredible is that she not only built an entire world on Godspeed, but in Shades of Earth she builds another fantastic world on Centauri-Earth. The descriptions of the planet were so brilliant that I could vividly picture it while reading. Revis builds an incredible world of toxin releasing plants, glass that captures solar energy, and dinosaur-like birds that eat people alive. While the planet presents many problems, one of the biggest obstacles to overcome is the conflict that begins when Amy unfreezes the people from Sol-Earth.

The struggle for power between Amy’s father and Elder was very realistic. I would’ve been disappointed if the frozens woke up and suddenly everything was fine. It made much more sense for Amy’s father to try to take over as the leader of the people from Godspeed, and I was glad that Elder did not allow himself to be pushed away just because of his age. Amy annoyed me for awhile because at first she was completely insensitive to Elder and the way he was being treated by her father.  She seemed to ignore the situation because she was so happy to see her parents, but poor Elder was left trying to stand up to her father on his own. I liked the way their relationship progressed in this book though, so even though she annoyed me I think this conflict between Amy and Elder was necessary to push them in the direction they ended up heading in.

I loved the character development in this book. In each book of the trilogy there has been incredible growth in both Amy and Elder, but in this book especially I was impressed by how much they grew from beginning to end. Amy learned how to cope with loss and that her parents were not necessarily perfect people. I feel like she really grew up and was able to become more of a leader than a follower. Elder remained loyal to his people and grew up immensely, becoming the leader we all knew he was capable of becoming. He learned to have faith in himself and how to stand up to oppression.

Overall, Shades of Earth was an incredible end to the trilogy and made me experience a rollercoaster of emotions from beginning to end. I’m sad to see it come to an end but I couldn’t have pictured a more perfect way to end the series!

Shades of Earth was released on January 15, 2013 and is the final book in the Across the Universe trilogy.

Favorite Books of 2012

2012 was a fantastic year for YA, filled with a ton of debut novels and some really great sequels! It was so hard for me to pick favorites because I literally read over 100 books this year, but I did my best! Here are some of the best books I read this year:

 

Insurgent by Veronica Roth

Insurgent by Veronica Roth

I didn’t think the sequel would live up to the incredible book that was Divergent, but Insurgent was actually even better than the first book! I loved learning about the different factions and I liked that Tris and Four’s relationship wasn’t all sunshine and butterflies. I can’t wait until the final book is released!

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

This was the first John Green book I had ever read and it definitely turned me into a die hard fan. The story was so moving and the writing was phenomenal. I literally wept after reading this and would gladly do it again because this book was just that good.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

This book really surprised me and I am so glad I gave it a chance. It had a cast of fantastically written characters and an exciting quest to find a lost king that brings them all together. I absolutely loved this and can’t wait for the sequel!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore

Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore

I was so excited to return to the world of Graceling and I couldn’t wait to see how Bitterblue had grown to become queen. She is such a strong character and throughout the book grew into an even better queen. It was eerie to read about the destruction that still lingered after her father’s death and how the sick things that he did still affected people years after. I only wish this weren’t the final book because I would love to return to this world for just a bit longer!

 

 

 

 

 

 

For Darkness Shows the Stars by Diana Peterfreund

For Darkness Shows the Stars by Diana Peterfreund

I absolutely loved this retelling of Jane Austen’s Persuasion. I loved how it was a retelling of a classic but had sci-fi elements mixed in. Elliot is such a strong character that single handedly runs her father’s estate and is willing to give up everything, including the man she loves, to save the estate and the people working there.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Scarlet by A.C. Gaughen

Scarlet by A.C. Gaughen

Scarlet is a retelling of Robin Hood in which Robin Hood’s fellow thief Will Scarlet is actually a girl in disguise, hiding from her past. Scarlet is loyal to Robin Hood and fights as well as any man. I loved Scarlet’s stubbornness and strength and her interactions with the other thieves were hilarious. This was such a great story and I’m anxiously awaiting the sequel!

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Million Suns by Beth Revis

A Million Suns by Beth Revis

This sequel to Across the Universe was absolutely fantastic. Elder and Amy are left to deal with the aftermath of shutting down the Phydus and figuring out the truth behind their lives on the ship. Both characters grew so much in this book and their relationship evolved as they discovered more about both themselves and their role on Godspeed. The ending was a huge cliffhanger so I am very excited to read the sequel next month!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi

Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi

I am so glad that I finally was able to read this book! I loved Aria and Perry’s story and the whole idea behind the evolution of the senses was incredible. I can’t wait to see where Rossi takes this in Through the Ever Night!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Angelfall by Susan Ee

Angelfall by Susan Ee

I was really apprehensive about this one because I figured it was another dumb romance featuring fallen angels but I was definitely wrong. Angelfall is in fact a post-apocalyptic story about angels that brought death and destruction to earth. I really enjoyed this book and I’m glad I gave it a chance!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Incarnate by Jodi Meadows

Incarnate by Jodi Meadows

This was such a fantastically written book. It was such an original story about reincarnation and a world where souls are reincarnated multiple times into different bodies. Ana is a Newsoul, living her first life, and she is shunned by everyone else because when she was born, another soul died and was never reincarnated. This was such an amazing story and I could not put this one down!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver

Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver

I really loved this sequel to Delirium. Lena became such a strong character in this book and decided to fight back instead of hide. The cliffhanger at the end was SO MEAN and I am super excited to see what happens next!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Selection by Kiera Cass

The Selection by Kiera Cass

This is another book that surprised me. I could not put this one down! It was very Hunger Games-esque because America has to be part of a televised competition to be the prince’s bride in order to earn money for her family, who are poor. She is forced to leave behind the boy she loves and instead is expected to try and win the prince’s favor. The ending of this book was great and I hope the sequel is just as good!

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa

The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa

I initially was skeptical about this once I heard it was about vampires, but this is so much different than any other vampire story. Kagawa reinvents vampires in The Immortal Rules and I really loved the completely different direction she went in. This book was a really pleasant surprise!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Defiance by C.J. Redwine

Defiance by C.J. Redwine

This book mixed fantasy, paranormal, and sci-fi elements to create an incredible story. Rachel is another strong heroine, determined to find her father, and Logan is quite possibly one of my favorite characters ever! He’s extremely intelligent and has a logical way of thinking but is also an excellent fighter. This was a really great one!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

I loved reading about Celaena, a female assassin that is able to take down nearly every man that crosses her path. She gets chosen to compete to be the king’s new assassin and has to defeat man after man all while trying to figure out who keeps brutally murdering the contestants in the middle of the night. This book had a little bit of everything and I definitely could not put it down!

 

 

 

 

 

So 2012 has definitely been a great year! What books were your favorites this year? What are you looking forward to reading in 2013?

January 2013 Preview

2013 is definitely going to start off with a bang for YA lit! I am declaring 2013 The Year of Sequels because nearly every book that I am eagerly anticipating for next year is a sequel to something I read in 2012, The Year of Debuts. I had hoped that next year I would finally be able to start reading the 60 or so books that I own but have yet to read but upon seeing the multitude of upcoming releases for 2013 I think this will be almost impossible. There are simply too many books being released that I absolutely MUST read first!!

Through the Ever Night by Veronica Rossi

Through the Ever Night by Veronica Rossi

I literally just started reading Under the Never Sky and even though I’m only about thirty pages in, I’m already hooked! I waited much longer than most to read this book but the good news is that I have less time to wait before the sequel is released! The even better news is that it is released the same day I am leaving for vacation, so I now have the perfect book to read on the airplane!

Release date:  January 8, 2013

 

 

 

 

 

Shades of Earth by Beth Revis

Shades of Earth by Beth Revis

This is the final book in the Across the Universe trilogy and I cannot even begin to say how excited I am to read this! Across the Universe was a stunning book about a space station in the middle of the universe and its sequel, A Million Suns was even better. I can’t wait to read the conclusion to Elder and Amy’s story!

Release date:  January 15, 2013

 

 

 

 

 

Level 2 by Lenore Appelhans

Level 2 by Lenore Appelhans

I’ve been a follower of Lenore’s blog for awhile now and I am very excited that her book has been published! Level 2 is the first book in The Memory Chronicles and is a story about a girl in the afterlife who spends her time reliving her memories from Earth. When she discovers that there might be a way to return to her old life and the boy she loves, she finds herself stuck in the middle of a rebellion. This sounds like a really interesting story and I can’t wait to read it!

Release date:  January 15, 2013

 

 

 

 

Asunder by Jodi Meadows

Asunder by Jodi Meadows

Incarnate was one of my all time favorite books of 2012 and one of the most original stories I’ve ever read. The whole concept of reincarnation over and over again was fascinating and I can’t wait to see how Ana’s story continues.

Release date:  January 29, 2013

 

 

 

 

 

Prodigy by Marie Lu

Prodigy by Marie Lu

Legend has been on my to read list for a very long time and I have heard a lot of great things about both Legend and its sequel, Prodigy. The series is a dystopian featuring a strong female protagonist, so I’m sure I will love it. I will definitely have to read both very soon!

Release date:  January 29, 2013

 

 

 

 

 

The Prey by Andrew Fukuda

The Prey by Andrew Fukuda

This book is the sequel to The Hunt, which is another one of my favorites from 2012. The Hunt was a completely different take on vampires and even though I thought I was over the whole vampire craze, I absolutely LOVED it. I can’t wait to see what happens next in The Prey.

Release date:  January 29, 2013

 

 

 

 

 

So it looks like a very exciting start to 2013! What releases are you looking forward to in the new year?