Shiirleyy's Bookshelf has migrated to Dear Shirley ! I will continue to post book reviews but there will also be a lot of personal and travel-related posts :)

Book Review: Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi

1 Jan 2012

Title: Under The Never Sky
Author: Veronica Rossi
Publisher: Murdoch Books Australia
Release Date: January 3rd, 2012/December 2011 (Aus)
Format: Paperback
Source: Publisher for review (Thank you!)

Aria is a teenager in the enclosed city of Reverie. Like all Dwellers, she spends her time with friends in virtual environments, called Realms, accessed through an eyepiece called a Smarteye. Aria enjoys the Realms and the easy life in Reverie. When she is forced out of the pod for a crime she did not commit, she believes her death is imminent. The outside world is known as The Death Shop, with danger in every direction.

As an Outsider, Perry has always known hunger, vicious predators, and violent energy storms from the swirling electrified atmosphere called the Aether. A bit of an outcast even among his hunting tribe, Perry withstands these daily tests with his exceptional abilities, as he is gifted with powerful senses that enable him to scent danger, food and even human emotions.

They come together reluctantly, for Aria must depend on Perry, whom she considers abarbarian, to help her get back to Reverie, while Perry needs Aria to help unravel the mystery of his beloved nephew’s abduction by the Dwellers. Together they embark on a journey challenged as much by their prejudices as by encounters with cannibals and wolves. But to their surprise, Aria and Perry forge an unlikely love - one that will forever change the fate of all who live UNDER THE NEVER SKY

The first book in a captivating trilogy, Veronica Rossi’s enthralling debut sweeps you into an unforgettable adventure

Wow. That was exactly what I thought immediately after I finished reading Under the Never Sky. I had high expectations when I dived into this, but I never expected myself to love it so much! Under the Never Sky is a story where romance takes a backseat to the plot and the survival of the characters. (Thank goodness, since so many YA books right now focuses heavily on romance and the actual plot is forgotten!) It's a story with courageous and responsible characters who know their priorities and who will sacrifice their lives for those they love. So basically, Under the Never Sky is a must read for 2012!

Let's start with the fantastic and unique world-building. Aria lives in Reverie, an enclosed city, where she is protected from the raging energy storms (Aether storms). She is able to access different virtual Realms through her eyepiece, called a Smarteye. The Smarteye allows her to be anyone, anywhere and at anytime. The world Aria lives in is one that is so unique and completely different from anything else I've read before. However, as much as the world fascinated me, I have to admit that I was confused with a lot of the terms used; for example, the book never directly explained what Aethers were, but I guess as I read on, it became easier to understand what they were.

So, what happens? Aria is exiled from her home after she is accused of a crime she did not commit and is left to die on the Outside. Perry, an Outsider is in search of his nephew who was recently kidnapped by Dwellers. A chance encounter results in an unlikely alliance between the two as each needs the other in order to find their family member - Perry to find his nephew and Aria to find her mother. They embark on a dangerous journey and must overcome all the obstacles in order to reach their destination and achieve their goals all under the never sky. I loved how throughout the book, the story never wavered from the plotline and the characters never forgot their priorities and what they set out to do in the first place.

Perry. I can't write this review without gushing over how amazingly kindhearted, loyal and even a little mysterious he is! He was always taking care of everyone around him, even Aria, when he barely knew her and hated her for what her kind did to his nephew. He was also willing to sacrifice his life for the person he loves most, knowing that by rescuing him, it would probably mean a death sentence for him. Oh, and the guy also has a sense of humour as well! What's not to love?

There's also Aria, our protagonist, whose character develops immensely throughout the book. I remember she was this frightened little girl, out by herself in a completely foreign environment, knowing she only had days left to live. But once this spark of hope ignited in her that she'll eventually find her mother, she started doing everything she could to survive and help Perry as well. During her time in the wild, she really changed to a strong, and independent woman who knew how to fight and even use knives to kill her enemy! And one thing I loved about her - she never gave up hope!

Oh, and how I loved the sweet romance! Thank goodness it wasn't insta-love, but in fact, quite the opposite. Aria and Perry's relationship develop as time passes, going from two strangers who ignored each other, to allies, and then, finally do they realise the feelings they have for one another is love. It's been a while since I've read such a satisfying romance that has the effect of even making my own heart start beating faster.

And, oh my goodness. THAT ENDING. It was so, incredibly heartbreaking. That cruel revelation at the end was also unexpected and unpredictable (at least, I never saw it coming!).Yet that ending, while heartbreaking also seemed so PERFECT. Now, I have to *try* to live through one whole year, all the while waiting impatiently for any news on the second book! Which basically equates to : I NEED THE SEQUEL NOW!!!

You know what? UTNS has made it to my favorite books read in 2011. Wait, scratch that. It's one of my all-time favourite books!


  1. I am so glad to see you liked it! I'm reading this one at the moment though I'm only a couple pages in. I have heard amazing things about it. Great review :) Thanks for stopping by my blog!

    Amy @ Following The Reader

  2. YAY. When you told me you loved this book, I was totally encouraged and I wasnt disappointed at all. Thank you! =)

    I loved the small details that the author has included in the story. This book has also made it to my favourite books! Great review girl! x

    Happy new year.


  3. My face split into an instant grin the moment you started your "Perry" paragraph haha <3 I adored him SO much and Aria was such an incredible heroine, I loved watching her growth. Your review is PERFECT, Shirley!! Everything I felt about this book and all my frustrations over THAT BLOODY LONG WAIT UNTIL THE SEQUEL!! *whines loudly* Why don't we just kidnap Veronica? It would make our lives a whole lot easier *plots*

    I love this book so much. Sigh. Brilliant review :)

  4. I haven't had the chance to read this one yet. I want a copy of this SO bad. I am DYING to read this book. I've seen a few reviews of it and I don't think I've seen a bad review of it so far. Great review! =D I am dying for this.

  5. You HAVE TO READ THIS! It's INCREDIBLE! You'll love the guys in it <3
    Thank youu! Hope you get a copy soon!!!

  6. Wow you really loved this! I had a hard time with it myself but it seems like I'm theblack sheep everyone is loving it haha. Oh well! Awesome review my dear!

    Xpresso Reads

  7. Yesyes I did <3 Oh, I remember reading your review & I have to admit, I did agree with the aspects that you didn't particularly like. However, I guess I was able to overlook those and ended up really enjoying it!
    Thank you Giselle <3

  8. I haven't read this one yet- but it sounds fantastic from your review! I love the plot and the characters sound interesting. Your review is excellent and it is obvious that you really enjoyed it! Thanks for sharing!


  9. I haven't had a chance to read it yet. :( It's on the tbr list though. Thanks for the review!

  10. Hope you get a chance to read it soon! It's so amazing <3 Thanks for stopping by :D

  11. Hope you're liking it so far! Thanks <33

  12. OMG! ALL TIME FAVOURITE BOOK? I feel like the only one who haven't read this book! I AM DYING DYING DYING to read this. Another amazing review, Shirley! So happy you enjoyed it! :)

  13. Awww, thank you Jess <33
    You should definitely try it - it was so, so amazing!!! I'd recommend it to everyone!

  14. LOL what a coincidence; I was just commenting on your blog when I received an email showing a comment from you!
    YESS <3 Definitely one of my all-time fav. books! You should definitely read it!!! (Although I admit it may not be everyone's cup of tea :S) Still, YOU HAVE TO READ IT!!!
    Haha, thank youuu <33


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