“Four Stars: A thrilling, heart pounding beginning to a series.
Ari panics, she can't find her patch. Her Ancient is coming for the Taking and if she doesn't have the Patch over her eyes, serious repercussions will follow. It is too... late he is coming. She flings herself on her bed, terrified to move or breathe. The Ancients come every night to take the necessary nutrients from their human counterparts. As he takes from her body, she can't resist a peek, and she is shocked to find the handsome
Jackson Locke hovering over her. Instead of turning her in, he shushes her and promises to explain everything tomorrow. But tomorrow brings a tumult of problems. Soon Ari finds herself mired in a treacherous situation. Who does she trust? Jackson the Ancient or her father? Is everything she has been taught her entire life a lie? Are the Ancients out to destroy humanity, or will humanity destroy itself?
What I Liked:
*I loved that this book took me on a terrifying, heart pounding adventure. We are thrust into a future society in America that has rebuilt after the fourth world war. This civilization has a strange symbiotic relationship with the Ancients an advanced species on another planet who need Earth's water to save their dying world. The Ancients bailed out Earth after the last world war and in return humans must enable them to habituate their bodies to Earth so they can cohabit the planet. Of course, having two different species vying for the same resources creates a whole host of problems. Ari finds herself forced into opening her eyes and questioning everything she knows. Are the Ancients really the bad guys or is her father and the rest of the leaders at fault? Do you go against everything you know to be true and betray your friends and family or trust the boy who stole your heart? I loved that this book presents so many hard decisions.
*This book shows us the dark side of the human nature. How we are so quick to mistrust and hate people who are different. We are exposed to some horrible situations where the Ancients are tortured and experimented on and abused. My heart hurt for these victims and as I tried to reassure myself that it was just a story, I knew it was a lie. For as much as we want to deny that their is much darkness in the human heart, there is and situations like the ones in the book have occurred countless times in history. Ms. West forces us to face the evil nature of man and reminds us the consequences of our actions. The humans so quick to destroy the Ancients may instead end up decimating their own population. I appreciated that this book is thought provoking.
*I liked that this book presents a strong, capable and intelligent main character in Ari. She has trained her entire life to be a warrior so she is quick and deadly. Yet, she takes time to think things through and realizes that not everything falls into the category of right and wrong. She finds herself questioning all of her father's teachings. Ari shows tremendous courage in going against all she knows. Would you be brave enough to step up?
*The romance in this one is difficult...It is a forbidden romance and so that makes it all the more sweet. Of course, it is fraught with complications and the reader is left teetering wondering whether it will work out from one chapter to the next.
*I enjoyed the suspense and edge of your seat feel in this one. It isn't one where you are clutching your book in fright, but it does put you on edge and you have a subtle sense of anxiety throughout the book. I love books that keep me eagerly turning the pages and this one does just that!
And the Not So Much:
*I was perplexed that there was not more explanation regarding the Taking. In the beginning, the reader learns that the humans are subjected to this ritual every night. They must lie on their bed with a special Patch over their eyes while the Ancients come and draw nutrients from their bodies. What are they taking and why? Is it to help acclimate them? Do they need to do this every night? Do the humans feel anything after this event? Are they weakened by the Taking? What happens if The Ancients don't take? This event was confusing and definitely needed more detail.
*The other area where the story was lacking was in the details on the Ancients. So little is known about this species and their world. I kept thinking that details were forthcoming and was disappointed that there was so little to go on. It was apparent at the end of the story that the next book would give us more information on The Ancients. It is frustrating, though when it is missing in the first book.
*The villain, Zeus, remains a mystery. He plays such a little part in the book and I wanted to know more about him.
*Finally, this book ends on a cliffhanger so I was left with a bunch of questions after a nerve racking ending. After a violent episode, I didn't even know the repercussions and who survived. I detest cliffhangers and this definitely lowered my final opinion of the book since that is the last impression I had of the story.
Gravity is a compelling dystopian book that forces us to examine the evil side of humanity. Would you have the courage to stand and fight against popular thinking, against your family and friends and push to do the right thing? Ms. West thrusts us into a world where a girl is forced to make these difficult decisions. It is a thought provoking and suspenseful read. I enjoyed Ms. West's debut and can't wait for the continuation of this story!
"Now...I’m not sure how I feel. While fear is part of it, if I’m honest, completely honest, there is something deeper than fear inside me for this thing that climbs in my window."
“Danger lies with those who ignore the signs.”
"I don’t know. I feel like I’m losing myself. He’s all I can think about. It’s like gravity disappears when he’s around and I’m floating, lost. I think...I think I might be...” I tug at my ponytail, twirling it around my finger again and again."
"I’ve never understood why we send our future into the fight, but that’s how it has always been, and how it will always be...if we survive this."
"I try to look anywhere but at him, knowing that if I allow myself to look into his eyes, I’ll melt. The reservoir will spill over, exposing just how wrecked I am inside."
"I’m sure going to training today will be hard, but that’s what being an adult is, dear. We have to face things that frighten us head on."
"Real is loving someone with so much passion that they anger you as much as they excite you. Real love grips you in a way that never releases, and while you may hate that person in one breath, one look from them melts your heart."
"Sweetie,” she says, taking my hand, “there is a lot of gray between life and death. Life isn’t worth living if you aren’t with the ones you love."
"Another time, I would have called them cowards, but I was ignorant then, not understanding that war is about a lot more than courage. It’s about what’s right, separate from expectation or orders."
A big thanks to Entangled Publishing for the review copy in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own and I was not compensated for this review.
Posted@ Rainy Day Ramblings