Review: Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi

From Hicklebee’s: 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.

In her enthralling debut, Veronica Rossi sends readers on an unforgettable adventure set in a world brimming with harshness and beauty.

Order now from Hicklebee’s.

Veronica Rossi delights with her debut Under the Never Sky. I wouldn’t say it is a quick read, but every moment is exceptional.

Firstly Rossi creates immediate strife by introducing Aria in desperate need to contact her mother. In her need to find out if her mother is okay Aria makes some really bad decisions, but they are decisions I also would have made in her circumstances. In a disabled part of the bubble Aria lives in the boy she wants to use to get info on her mom starts a real fire, to see what it is like. Things burn up faster than anyone could have imagined and Aria is barely saved by a savage outsider.

What Rossi does well is pit two separate societies against each other. You have the pampered folk who live in the domes who spend most of their time utilizing virtual reality simulations to stave off boredom and opposed to that the people who live outside of the bones who are quite savage with their genetic enhancements from living with the aether and their sharp teeth. The outsiders live more like intelligent cavemen in tribes.

Another thing I absolutely adored is that we get to understand what happened before the apocalypse! YAY information! Aether storms tore through (the world?) America and the storms killed. Acid like rain and other weather anomalies drove people inside the domes and drove the outsiders to live in tribes with a strange leader system.

The characters were believable even when not likable and I enjoyed the fact that the secondary characters had a layer of personality that you rarely see in YA fiction. They were not completely flat and had motives, love, and quirks of their own. Aria and Peregrine are very well written and I enjoyed their conversations, quirks, decision making skills and their humor.

The plot moves at a good pace and enough information is given in tastes to keep you coming back for more delicious plot.

All in all I was impressed with this debut and the fact that it strays from the cookie cutter dystopia that I have been reading lately. I am anticipating learning more about Perry, Aria and their world.

If you are in the San Francisco Bay Area, come to Veronica’s launch party at Rakestraw Books on Saturday January 7th at 4pm.

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