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Infinite Satellite

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Across the Universe - Beth Revis Concept: A
Plot: B-
Character Development: B
Writing: B-
Pacing: B+
Ending: A+
Cover Art: A+

If you've read one dystopian novel where the main character is slowly figuring out what's wrong with his/her screwed up world with the help of an outsider, you've read them all. This book offers few surprises. The only thing setting it apart from the slew of YA dystopians glutting the market is that it's set in space, but actually, that saved it for me. Trapping your characters on a space ship with a dangerous tyrant, a genetically engineered populace who worship him, and a murderer running loose does create a suspenseful atmosphere and helps the reader spend more time worrying about how the heroes will survive and less time thinking, "Geez, I've heard all this before."

The science end of the science fiction is underdeveloped. Usually I don't like a lot of technical jargon, but here it seemed like a few things didn't make sense. For instance, after Amy is thawed, they don't want to refreeze her because it could kill her. Apparently your cells get damaged in the freezing process and redoing it is dangerous. But don't we constantly grow new cells? Right? So what's to stop them from giving her time to heal up and refreezing her in a couple years? I feel like if the frozen people were in charge of a project as huge as colonizing a new planet, the backers would have wanted assurances they'd get there safely, like a backup in case someone got thawed early. There are a few other instances of this, like this book could have been longer and more detailed but instead, someone said, "Well, it's just marketed to teens. It needs to be short and have making out, and everything else is secondary."

But, I liked it enough that I will read the next one. While I figured everything out as far as what had happened to create the civilization, who was the murderer, etc, there was one small, nasty surprise at the end that I did NOT see coming. Hopefully the next book will have its feet under it from the get-go.