Published: HarperTeen (January 3, 2012)
Series: Book 1
GR Summary: WORLDS KEPT THEM APART.
DESTINY BROUGHT THEM TOGETHER.
Aria has lived her whole life in the protected dome of Reverie. Her entire world confined to its spaces, she's never thought to dream of what lies beyond its doors. So when her mother goes missing, Aria knows her chances of surviving in the outer wasteland long enough to find her are slim.
Then Aria meets an outsider named Perry. He's searching for someone too. He's also wild - a savage - but might be her best hope at staying alive.
If they can survive, they are each other's best hope for finding answers.
My Thoughts: My thought process in the first 75 pages were repetitive variations of: "What the devil is even HAPPENING?" With all the technology and the jargon and the Aether (what IS it?) sky that kills people, I really didn't know what to think. Around the page 100ish mark, I got into the story. May I just state that I LOVE the alternative points of view? Because I did. I feel like if we just heard from Aria or Perry, there wouldn't be a fleshed-out feel of this world.
I liked the characterization in Under the Never Sky. Aria and Perry were so frigid toward another in the beginning. You know what this means: SLOW BURN. It's worth it. When the MC and her love interest are kind of afraid of one another, every little interaction becomes heightened. Such is the case. Rossi does not disappoint in the lovin' feeling department.
As much as I was confused by the technology at first: I LOVE the idea of SmartEyes. I have no idea what they actually consist of, but I like to imagine that it's like a tiny, non-stinging jellyfish that molds to your face. Also? Imagining yourself to be doing something or going somewhere and your SmartEye allowing you to do it? Uh, gimme one. Except that their SmartEyes are purely virtual. And life in Reverie is pretty isolated and sad.
Now that I've spent an entire paragraph on SmartEyes, let me say this was a fun book to read. There were cannibals, and that's pretty frightening, so there was a genuine feeling of "holy heck they could actually die at ANY MINUTE." The odds were against Perry and Aria on their mission to get Aria back to Reverie. Not to mention THE SKY. Is it a chemical? Is it electricity? Whatever it is, it can kill people. This entire book is a minefield!