Review: Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi

February 5, 2014 Reviews, Science Fiction 13 ★★★★

Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi
Series: Under the Never Sky, Vero
Published by HarperCollins on December 1, 2011
Genres: Science Fiction
Pages: 376
Format: Paperback
Source: Gifted
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 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 finally read Under the Never Sky!  And at the time that I’m writing this review, I’ve already read Through the Ever Night, and I’ve got Into the Still Blue checked out from the library.  I’m making good progress with my Series Catch-Up!

Under the Never Sky is book that had some problems, yet the plot was exciting enough for me to overlook the flaws.  Let’s start with Aria, the pod-dwelling Ms. Snooty-Pants who considers Perry, a “Savage,” beneath her notice.  I couldn’t waste the energy to get irritated with her, because we readers have been down this path enough to know that Aria might as well have had a flashing sign over head that read, “I will transform into a likable person by the end of this novel.”  And how would that transformation occur?  Of course, it would involve that smelly Savage she disdains.  As for Perry, his sudden attraction to Aria was…unconventional in a YA book, to say the least.  But once these two get past their silly and artificial-feeling biases, it’s time to bring in a bit of a romance.  Not enough to detract from the exciting adventure in the story, but enough to ensure we don’t get annoyed by their previous sniping.

So, I’m feeling good about this story now that Aria has shaped up.  But I kept wondering about those pods.  How could the Dwellers be content to live their lives enclosed in a pod, spending their days in artificial realms?  They knew “the real world” existed just outside, and they knew that other humans lived there.  Even with the dangers present in the outside world, wouldn’t that be preferable to most people?

There were also some important terms that Rossi brushed over with very little explanation.  I knew that Aether was something in the sky, and it’s very, very bad.  But how and when was it created?  And is it any relation to this Unity thing, which sounds like a pleasant word, but in context here, we can tell it is also very, very bad.  (As I mentioned above, I just finished Through the Ever Night, and both Aether and Unity were given a paragraph or two of much-needed explanation.)

After all that, this is still a 4 star book for me.  The action (cannibals, fighting with Raiders outside Marron’s home), the surprising revelation about Aria, and ROAR!  Roar, who is, as far as I’m concerned, the star of the series.  All of the angsty, brooding male MC’s in YA need to take some lessons from Roar.


13 Responses to “Review: Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi”

    • Stephanie

      Thanks, Kristen! I have to say that I didn’t like # 2 as much as # 1, but I’m still very excited to read Into the Still Blue.

  1. Nikki @ Foil the Plot

    You’re not alone. When I first started UtNS, I HATED it. Seriously. I could NOT get down with Aria and her snootiness or constant complaining. But I dunno, once she got to the outside world, that all started to change and by the end, BOOM! I was hopelessly hooked. By book #2, you start to see a ton of character growth as well as endless action and heartbreaking devastation (as you’re probably already well aware). And yes. Roar is totally the star of the show. And he will continue to be. Forever. And ever. So glad you ended up enjoying this one!

    • Stephanie

      I think that if I had not seen this predictable type of transformation so often, I might have given up early on UTNS.

  2. Kelly

    Under the Never Sky was one of the first dystopians I read, after I started blogging. It’ll always hold a special place in my heart, for that reason.

    I don’t remember much, but love – I loved the dangerous world, I loved the characters and I loved the mythology! Glad to see you enjoyed it too!
    Kelly recently posted…Pretty Little Tips: Image Rollover EffectMy Profile

    • Stephanie

      I have the same feeling about The Hunger Games, which was my first YA dystopia. I still haven’t found a book that comes close to measuring up to it.

  3. Joyousreads

    I just finished reading Into the Still Blue. OMG. It inspired me to re-read Under the Never Sky! I’m glad you enjoyed it. Aria was a little hard to take at first, but then again, Perry gave as much as she doled out. Love this pair!

    I hope you’ll love Into the Still Blue. 🙂
    Joyousreads recently posted…Angel Baby by Richard LangeMy Profile

    • Stephanie

      That is so good to hear! I think I’m going to read Into the Still Blue this weekend. And it was nice that Aria’s pain in the ass phase was mercifully short.

  4. Kelly L.

    I still have to read this one!
    Hmm…hopefully I’ll be into Aria and Perry’s romance; I’ve seen everyone fawning all over them, but I just don’t know if I’ll like them.
    Ahh, I’m quite worried that Veronica never went into depth with the world-building. For me, world-building in dystopians is a must; otherwise, everything will just fall apart. Hopefully Through the Ever Night will have enough world-building explanations.
    Kelly L. recently posted…Life Of A Blogger: If You Could Live Anywhere?My Profile

  5. Wendy Darling

    I had soooo many questions while I was reading and after I finished this book, too! I really liked some parts of it, but I have to admit I had rather mixed reactions to it overall. I’m glad you ended up enjoying it despite a few issues, though, and that you’re moving on with the rest of the series. It definitely has a huge following.
    Wendy Darling recently posted…The Winner’s Curse: reviewMy Profile

  6. Sarah J

    I’m glad to hear that those questions were touch upon in the sequel. I haven’t gotten around to Through the Ever Night, but hopefully I will soon since the final book is out. I liked it, but I thought it dragged a bit. Plus like you I was always full of questions of “why was this happening?”.
    Sarah J recently posted…Vampire Academy Movie Review!My Profile

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