Sunday, April 7, 2013

{Review} Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi

Title: Under the Never Sky
Author: Veronica Rossi
Format: Hardcover
Publisher: HarperTeen
Release date: January 3, 2012
Date Read: April 5, 2013
Rating: ✭✭✭✭✭

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 energy storms will. 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 come together to survive. Their unlikely alliance forges a bond that will determine the fate of all who live under the never sky.

I owe this book so much.

For several months, I’d been a horrendous reading slump - the kind where you have a pile of books to choose from and read, but you actively avoid them all and spend your free time stuffing your face with junk food and watching Netflix.

I’d received a lot of advise for the slump: read novellas, read comedy books, and watch more television (which was a really bad idea, because then I watched all eight seasons of SUPERNATURAL in a row).

But I decided to pick up UNDER THE NEVER SKY because it just seemed like something that would interest me.

And oh, gods, did it.

This book bitch-slapped me out of my slump and set me on a ridiculous path to read as many books as I’d missed out while on my little... vacation.

UNDER THE NEVER SKY takes place in a world where the city dwellers live in a community known as the Reverie, completely excluded from the dangerous outer wasteland, where cannibals feast and the land is swamped with Aether storms. Our protagonist, Aria, gets into a bit of a fight with some very important bastards and gets thrown out of the Reverie, left to fend for herself.

However, she’s not alone for long. ‘Savage’ Perry is on a quest to find someone, and Aria goes along with him to seek out answers and look for her missing mother.

I’m going to be perfectly honest: the beginning of UNDER THE NEVER SKY was no picnic. It was confusing and I had no idea what was going on. I didn’t understand what Aria meant by Pods and the Reverie and Smarteyes and Aether. Hell, I still didn’t even know what the words meant by page one hundred! I would’ve preferred info-dumping to the lack of information in the first half.

But slowly, you began to unravel the meaning behind the words, and that’s when the world building got awesome. It was like someone had wiped and cleaned my finger-print ridden classes soon as I figured it all out.



The world Rossi had created for her characters was richly imaginative. The science fiction was so engrossing, but the outskirts, outside the enclosed city, was even better. I couldn’t put the book down. 

I literally considered skipping math class to hide out in the bathroom and continue reading.

but the bathroom is full of weave and dirty toilet paper and weird moth bugs so I was just like FORGET IT I'LL RUIN THE BOOK'S COVER

The characters all had these realistic backstories and personalities. I didn't like Aria at all for the first half of the book, but as soon as she got her shit together, I really started to appreciate her. Perry I loved as soon as I met him - he was kind of a badass awkward penguin that I couldn't help but adore.

And Roar.


okay, so a gif of my baby Castiel exploding probably wasn't my best move ever, but still

There was no insta-love in Perry and Aria's romance, though there was a bit of romantic tension after they became friends. Their relationship was so adorable and realistic, and equal. Perry snapped at Aria when she was being a bitch, Aria called out Perry when he was being a unknowing jerk, and it was all well and good. There were also hysterical moments in their relationship, like when Aria thinks she's dying because she got her period, and Perry is the one who tells her that she's menstruating.

I was crying from laughing so hard. 

Roar's relationship with Aria was fantastic, too, because even though he was a flirt, they were just friends, and they both knew it. Roar was in love with someone else, and I'm thankful Rossi didn't pull the dreaded love-triangle card on us.

I loved Rossi's writing. It was pretty and easy to read, going along with the intense world-building perfectly. UNDER THE NEVER SKY is indeed written in third-person with both Aria and Perry's points of view - but their voices were so varying and unique I never had to worry about mixing them up.

Veronica Rossi got me out of a damn slump with this amazing read, and I have her to thank for many months to come.

Also, I blame her for tearing my throats to shreds.

I honest-to-goodness screamed and snorted and squealed my way through this lovely work, and while my throat didn't enjoy the ride, I sure did.


Oceana is a French-blooded teenager who enjoys stalking British boys and asking them to marry her. She was diagnosed with severe fangirl disorder in 2011. Able to curse like a sailor with an angelic voice.


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  2. An interesting story, written skillfully. Good character development, and they are people I now care about. I'm looking forward to the 2nd in the series!
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