To say I am a book nerd is a complete understatement. I’ve been a voracious reader since I was a mere little girl in preschool where I locked myself in the bathroom until I learned how to read Dr. Seuss (seriously, I can’t make this stuff up…I was quite the gem). In elementary school I used to devour Stephen King and Dean Koontz novels like candy while all the
normal other kids played kickball at recess. I worked at Barnes and Noble for five years to offset my book purchasing budget in high school and college. I was on a first name basis with the librarian at my local branch. Last I checked I had read over 300 books and marked over 200 books as “to read” on my Goodreads account. I love, love, love to read. Recently I’ve noticed that I tend to forget about books I have read pretty shortly after reading them. Not sure if I’m reading books too fast or if old age is kicking in but it saddens me when I can’t pinpoint specific details about a book I know I thoroughly enjoyed. So, one of my resolutions this year was to start writing book reviews so that I can create a reference of all the books I enjoy (or don’t). I figured why not review the books I read for the blog so I can also pass along recommendations to my family and friends. So without further adieu I present my first official book review!
I am stoked to start my book reviews with a review of the debut novel, Terra, written by fellow blogger Gretchen Powell. I have been a follower and fan of Gretchen’s other blog, Honey I Shrunk the Gretchen for quite some time.
Terra is a young adult dystopian/sci-fi novel. For the sake of brevity and because Amazon writers are way more qualified to summarize novels than I am I’ll go ahead and provide you with the plot summary from Amazon:
“A broken and desolate Earth. A young girl struggling to survive. A lost boy with a powerful secret.
A discovery that will change everything.
In the distant wake of a plague that has decimated the Earth’s population, humanity is split in two: The rich and powerful live in skycities that float overhead, while those who remain on the ground have gathered in settlements strewn across a dying planet. Eighteen-year-old Terra Rhodon is a terrestrial–a denizen of the barren groundworld–who makes her living as a scav. Long abandoned by her father, her caregivers gone, Terra supports herself and her younger brother, Mica, by scouring the earth for discarded scraps and metals to recycle for profit. One day, while on a routine scavenging run, she discovers something that shocks her home settlement of Genesis X-16. When the value of her discovery is revealed, Terra’s world is turned upside down.
Terra suddenly finds herself asking questions no one will answer. Her search for the truth leads her to Adam–a beguiling skydweller unlike any she has ever met. But Adam has secrets and a quest of his own, and with him by her side, the world Terra thought she knew begins to unravel. Soon her discoveries unearth a terrifying conspiracy that has the potential to shatter everything–a revelation that will test the bonds of loyalty, family, and love.”
When I first started reading Terra I felt a certain sense of déjà vu as visions of Katniss floated through my head. In fact my initial thoughts were that Terra seemed to be the lovechild of the Hunger Games and the Divergent series. However, as the story progressed Terra really blossomed into it’s own and I was hooked. Terra is incredibly well written and thought out. Seriously, the creativity in this novel is astounding. The level of detail in describing the environment surrounding the characters creates a complete picture for the reader.
The characters are well developed and loveable. I hate it when authors focus on making the hero/heroine tough and cool but so one dimensional they don’t seem real. Terra was real and perfectly flawed; I definitely had a girl crush. So often authors also focus too much on the heroine/hero relationship and fail to create connections between these main characters and the supporting ones. But I loved how Gretchen built an adorable relationship between Adam and Micah; it added tons of dimension to the trio.
The plot twists were also great; I certainly didn’t see some of them coming. Just when I thought the story was going in one direction something would happen that would derail my predictions.
Bottom line, this is a great read. I would never have guessed that this is a debut novel, it’s that well written and dimensional. I loved this book; more so than the Divergent series to be perfectly honest with you. I found myself flying through this book and it got me through many late night baby feeding sessions. Terra is part of a series and Gretchen has already started writing book two. I’m pumped to find out what will happen next to Terra.
Check out Gretchen’s blog to read the first couple of chapters of Terra. Terra is available on Amazon in both paperback and Kindle format. I really hope you all give this book a shot; it’s awesome. Bravo Gretchen, bravo…and hurry up with book 2, I can’t wait to find out what happens next.