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Thursday, November 17, 2011

Book Review: Glow by Amy Kathleen Ryan

Reading Level: Young Adult
Publication Date: September 2011
Pages: 307
Series: 1st in the Sky Chasers Series
Acquisition: BEA 2011

If a violent battle destroyed the only world you’ve ever known, would you be brave enough to save who was left? Would love be strong enough to survive the fight? Either way, there’s no turning back.
The Empyrean is the only home 15-year-old Waverly has ever known. Part of the first generation to be successfully conceived in deep space, she and her boyfriend Kieran will be pioneers of New Earth. Waverly knows she must marry young in order to have children who can carry on the mission, and Kieran, the handsome captain-to-be, has everything Waverly could want in a husband. Everyone is sure he’s the best choice. Still, there’s a part of Waverly that wants more from life than marriage, and she is secretly intrigued by the shy, darkly brilliant Seth.
Suddenly, Waverly’s dreams are interrupted by the inconceivable – a violent betrayal by the Empyrean's sister ship, the New Horizon. The New Horizon’s leaders are desperate to populate the new planet first, and will do anything to get what they need: young girls. In one pivotal moment, Waverly and Kieran are separated, and find themselves at the helm of dangerous missions, where every move has potentially devastating consequences, and decisions of the heart may lead to disaster. (from publisher's website)

My thoughts:
There were a lot of aspects to Glow that I really found intriguing. Space travel has always fascinated me and the well used plot is always one I seem to gravitate towards. Humans taking to the stars in search of a new Earth - a new home where the human race can survive and thrive and begin again. Doesn't matter how many authors tell this tale, I'm always draw in. So Glow had that going for it with me.

The dual aspect POV was interesting but it didn't switch around enough for me. Too many chapters focused on one set of characters had me forgetting what the other set was doing and the timeline of the entire book was thrown all out of whack. I also never got a clear view on exactly what the ships looked like so the movements of the characters sometimes didn't seem to make any sense.

The characters themselves were enjoyable. All seemed pretty flawed from the start and when the trouble begins, these flaws served as catalysts. The way the characters interacted with each other, especially the boys, was a little predictable though and a lot of actions seemed inconsistent.

Overall, I can't say that I enjoyed the last 1/4 of the book. There was this underlying religious / God aspect running through the entire book but it took a strange turn. I got the feeling that I was suppose to agree with and feel sorry for a character that really did some horrible things to his 'friends'. Waverly's reactions at the very very end were so out of line in my opinion that I lost a little respect for her.

So I can't say that I loved this book but I am glad I read it. Loved the space travel and the dystopian feel but never really connected to any of the characters. An ok read for me.

Final verdict:
I can only assume by the ending, or really the lack of ending, that this is going to be the first book in a series. I wish more loose ends had been tied up in Glow and I wish it was a standalone book. I'm not sure if I'll pick up book 2 because even though I'm curious as to what happens to these characters I'm not really all that invested in their story. I don't know though.

A science fiction, young adult thriller that I couldn't help but compare to Across the Universe by Beth Revis while reading but without the same draw, for me at least. I would still recommend Glow to fans of sci-fi. There is a lot going on in this story and I hope my indifference doesn't turn you off because I do think there are a lot of people who will really enjoy this story.

Overall Rating:
3.5 / 5 Stars

Books in The Sky Chasers Series:
Spark (July 2012)

Linkage Love:
Macmillan / St. Martin's
Author's Website


  1. I have seen many so-so reviews on this one, but I am still interested in picking it up one day. Great review :)

  2. I still have my copy TBR from BEA and it makes me sad that you didn't love this. Like, I'm not a big sci-fi person, but I want to delve every once in awhile, so it's disappointing that this wasn't the best EVER. :-(


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