Author: J. A. Souders
Publisher: Tor Teen
Series: The Elysium Chronicles #1
My opinion: a surprsingly realistic underwater-dystopia
In a nutshell: a tension-filled book by a kick-ass author with a wonderful couple
Since the age of three, sixteen-year-old Evelyn Winters has been trained to be Daughter of the People in the underwater utopia known as Elysium. Selected from hundreds of children for her ideal genes, all her life she’s thought that everything was perfect; her world. Her people. The Law.But when Gavin Hunter, a Surface Dweller, accidentally stumbles into their secluded little world, she’s forced to come to a startling realization: everything she knows is a lie.Her memories have been altered. Her mind and body aren’t under her own control. And the person she knows as Mother is a monster.Together with Gavin she plans her escape, only to learn that her own mind is a ticking time bomb… and Mother has one last secret that will destroy them all
I was more than surprised and almost shocked to see how action packed the book was. Because Ms. Souders doesn’t mince her words when it comes to describing violations and violence. She totally blew my mind with many surprise twists and a well-conceived plot as well as with the cruel system in Elysium she created. With her writing style, it’s one of the most cinematic books I’ve ever read! Another interesting aspect e.g. was, when she wrote a chapter twice in order to underline Evie’s cofusion. Very clever, Ms. Souders. Very clever.
I really really liked Evie’s special development throughout the book. Evie at the beginning of the story is not comparable to the Evie at the end. She undergoes a more rapid conversion, but still, she’s an authentic character. She is a fighter and kick-ass!
Gavin, on the other hand – who triggered Evie’s “awakening” after all – was a character you have to emboson. In my opinion he portrays the bit of reality that Evie holds on to, the person on who she can count when she feels insecure.
The book is like a big mystery or riddle. Every so often we get some clues from the author until she drops the bombshell in the final showdown: Most questions are answered but new ones are raised.
However, I didn’t always quite understand why Mother was so evil or why Elysium has undergone its abstract development. Yes, I do understand that Mother is power-crazed, but in my view, her attitude and motivation was oversimplified.
But overall, it was a very entertaining read. I’m looking forward to reading more books in this series!