It seems only appropriate that I’m writing this post as I’m watching Star Wars (the original trilogy, not the less-than-awesome prequels). Across the Universe by Beth Revis is a truly astounding piece of science fiction that brings to mind such epic stories as those in Star Wars and Star Trek–voyages of discovery that illuminate what makes a leader who he or she is and how much humans can endure for the promise of a better tomorrow. (If it’s not clear already, I’ll go ahead and tell you that I put A LOT of thought into science fiction.) The characters in Across the Universe are completely relatable despite the centuries that separate them from the Earth we know and love. They look at their surroundings and wonder if there is something more for them…and sometimes they learn that “something more” is not always something better.
In Across the Universe, we meet Amy and Elder. Both are passengers aboard Godspeed, a spaceship headed for a planet similar to Earth, but these two passengers are very different. Amy was cryogenically frozen before Godspeed even launched, and she’s been in a dreamlike state for centuries. Elder, however, was born on the ship, and he’s in line to be the next leader of Godspeed and all of its inhabitants. How could these two teenagers, who are seemingly different in every way, possibly be connected? Well, dear readers, that is where our mystery begins.
When Amy is unfrozen fifty years ahead of schedule, the first face she sees upon waking is Elder’s. She doesn’t know where she is, and, more importantly, she doesn’t know why she was unfrozen and left to die. Why her? And does Elder have something to do with her predicament? Just who is this boy who will one day lead this ship? And does he know more than he is telling her?
Elder is fascinated by Amy. On a ship where everyone looks the same, her flaming red hair is like a beacon of light to Elder. He wants to learn everything about her. Unfortunately, Eldest, the current leader of Godspeed–and a tyrannical megalomaniac–sees Amy as an unwanted distraction. He knows she is nothing but trouble. After all, difference is one of the primary causes of discord, and Amy is different from everyone else aboard the ship. But Elder does everything in his power to protect Amy, and, while he’s at it, he discovers that Eldest is keeping some pretty big secrets from him. How can he lead this ship one day if the current leader is hiding what’s really going on, particularly when it comes to keeping iron control of the ship’s inhabitants?
Elder and Amy must also figure out who is thawing and, in some cases, killing those who have been cryogenically frozen. What is so important about these people that someone wants them dead? Why was Amy so important? Is Eldest responsible for this, or is someone else, an unknown entity, sending a message through these activities? What is happening aboard Godspeed, and can Amy and Elder find out and stop it before the entire ship self-destructs? Find out when you read Across the Universe by Beth Revis.
Across the Universe is science fiction at its finest. It provides readers with a glimpse of what our future could possibly look like (and it’s kind of terrifying). I thoroughly enjoyed this book, especially the big revelation at the end. (No, I’m not going to tell you what it is.) If you enjoyed books like The Adoration of Jenna Fox or The Comet’s Curse, I think you’ll find another winner in Across the Universe.
Across the Universe is the first book in a trilogy. (Pause while jumping for joy.) The second book, A Million Suns, is scheduled for release in 2012, and the third book, currently untitled, will come out in 2013. For more information on this amazing series, including a blueprint of Godspeed, visit http://acrosstheuniversebook.com/#!/home. I hope you enjoy this journey as much as I did!