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I really despise the fact that I have to wait a year in between books in a series. Sometimes it’s almost necessary to re-read the previous book in order to pick up on the little subtleties and nuances…and if it’s not necessary, it’s still advisable. I don’t like books that spend the first half of the book recapping the first novel, but a chapter devoted to refreshing the reader’s memory wouldn’t hurt. Not that Revis didn’t drop reminders…I’ve just read WAY too many books since Across the Universe, and I felt like it took forever to feel like I was on board Godspeed again. Anyway, that’s my problem, but I just had to vent.
That said, I thought A Millions Suns was even better than Across the Universe. First of all, I finally feel some connection between Elder and Amy besides “he’s my only choice because we’re the only teenagers on board this ship to nowhere.” They had passionate arguments, they consoled each other, they even kissed some…in short, they really started to care for each other. It was nice to see the relationship develop gradually, even if the impetus for Amy’s change of heart was others’ misfortune. (And maybe it wasn’t but that’s how it looked to me.)
Amy was still a little whiney with that whole Can we please unfreeze my parents-thing, but she’s definitely matured in the three months since the events of AtU. She’s trying to adjust to life aboard the ship, and she’s reevaluating everything she knows. She may spend the rest of her life on the ship, so she might as well make it home. And the more her thought process heads in that direction, the more she feels drawn to Elder.
Elder was rather surprising. He’s grown even more than Amy has, but he’s had a lot of responsibility thrust upon him all at once. Elder is now Eldest and must maintain order on Godspeed. He tries, but despite his best efforts, he’s undermined at every turn. But he still does what he thinks is right, regardless of whether he has any support. When I read AtU, I pictured Elder as Atreyu…young and ready to fight a battle he was sure to lose. Whereas after having read A Million Suns, I picture him more like Prince Caspian, picking up the pieces of the life he’d known and making something better with them, something better for all of his people. (Side note: I’d love it if Ben Barnes played every male protagonist from my favorite YA books. Yes, definitely Ben Barnes. Yum.)
And then you have the betrayals and in-fighting on the ship. Oh, you thought things were going to get better with Eldest gone? Ha. Haven’t you heard that old saying? Things are going to get worse before they get better. Things are definitely different now, but I don’t know if I’d say better. People who go off their meds suddenly are never the most stable…as is the case for those aboard Godspeed who’d been given Phydus all those years. Some are adjusting, and others…not so much.
I think that was kind of expected, but I found that this novel, unlike AtU, was rather unpredictable and kept me on the edge of my seat once it really got going. There were a lot of noooo’s and oh, frex’s (okay, and maybe some other expletives) shouted while I read through this one. I would definitely say I was shocked at times. Which is exactly what I expected from these books. Across the Universe built the base for the series, and A Million Suns catapulted the story into something truly captivating.