Genre: YA Fantasy/Dystopian
Series: Under The Never Sky #1
Publication Date: 3rd January 2012
Book Source: HarperCollins & NetGalley
Synopsis: Aria is a teenager in the enclosed city of Reverie. Like all Dwellers, she spends her time with friends in virtual environments, called Realms, accessed through an eyepiece called a Smarteye. Aria enjoys the Realms and the easy life in Reverie. When she is forced out of the pod for a crime she did not commit, she believes her death is imminent. The outside world is known as The Death Shop, with danger in every direction.
As an Outsider, Perry has always known hunger, vicious predators, and violent energy storms from the swirling electrified atmosphere called the Aether. A bit of an outcast even among his hunting tribe, Perry withstands these daily tests with his exceptional abilities, as he is gifted with powerful senses that enable him to scent danger, food and even human emotions.
They come together reluctantly, for Aria must depend on Perry, whom she considers a barbarian, to help her get back to Reverie, while Perry needs Aria to help unravel the mystery of his beloved nephew’s abduction by the Dwellers. Together they embark on a journey challenged as much by their prejudices as by encounters with cannibals and wolves. But to their surprise, Aria and Perry forge an unlikely love - one that will forever change the fate of all who live UNDER THE NEVER SKY
The first book in a captivating trilogy, Veronica Rossi’s enthralling debut sweeps you into an unforgettable adventure.
Under The Never Sky has a lot going on and I was quite simply captivated. It's a fascinating genre meld; part fantasy, part scifi, part dystopian, part post-apocalyptic, but as a whole it's a fast paced read set in a world that had me awestruck.
Aria's a Dweller, she's grown up in the protection of a dome, where everything pointless (like nail growth & periods) has been eliminated, where virtual Realms are as much a part of life as living and breathing. Peregrine is an Outsider, a Savage, one of the Tide tribe living in the very real, very dangerous world outside the pods. A world that deals with Aether storms, cannabilistic tribes, disease and starvation. To make it even more fascinating Perry can scent "tempers."
When Aria is forced out of Reverie, Aria and Perry form an unlikely partnership for mutual benefit - the boy of few words and the girl of many.
"Do the clouds ever clear?" she asked.
"Completely? No. Never."
"What about the Aether? Does that ever go away?"
"Never, Mole. The Aether never leaves."
She looked up. "A world of nevers under a never sky."
She fit in well then, he thought. A girl who never shut up.
Ooh I enjoyed this pairs' journey from mutual dislike and animosity to grudging respect and friendship almost as much as the physical journey fraught with danger. I guess it helps your case when your significant other stops smelling like something at the "brink of decay."
The whole "scent" thing ultimately makes umm ... sense, something my thoughts aren't making but don't let my lack of eloquence put you off.
Ms Rossi has penned a story with amazing world building, a plot that makes your heart race and she doesn't scrimp on character development. Not only did I love Perry and Aria, Peregrine's relationship with his nephew Talon pulled at my heartstrings and I'm hanging out for more Roar.
Bring on Through the Ever Night!
Visit Veronica Rossi's blog to find out more.