Shades of Earth by Beth Revis
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
What a way to finish! I have to admit that I was a little nervous for how this third book was going to go, but it didn't disappoint! Revis picks right up where the last book left off--which I kind of like--no need to rehash everything. Shades of Earth is about Amy and Elder as they land and begin to settle on the new planet. And if dealing with life on an unknown planet isn't enough, they also have to deal with the rift between shipborns and Earthborns, surviving, and oh, facing hostile "alien" life that is trying to kill everyone.
I was a little wary of the whole landing on a new planet/alien thing, and thought, oh great--this could be weird and just awful . . . but it wasn't! It has both familiar and otherworldly elements, which gives it an overall realistic feel, with still some of the fear and mystery of the unknown . . .
Secrets, secrets, secrets. This book is full of secrets. The clues are there if you look for them, but even if you do pick up on a few things, you will still be surprised when all of these secrets come to light, and you are totally blown away (or at least far enough away that you can get a look at it all) and think, wow, I didn't see that coming. Also, there are character fatalities. Like, a lot. I don't know how she could have realistically told this story without some death (they are going from space to a world of unknown danger, after all) but Revis sure isn't scared of letting her characters die.
I'm so glad that the narrative was written in the two perspectives of Amy and Elder. Not only does it allow a lot of depth, but it allows for you to see these multiple perspectives and question whether a decision is really right or wrong. Maybe wrong from one person's perspective, but right from another. This play with ethics/morality is something that Revis did in the first book, and I love the extra dimension it adds, and how it also allows for the romance between Amy and Elder to actually seem realistic, and doesn't neglect real issues like race and prejudice.
One final note: I think that the cover change is a good thing, because it will appeal to a wider audience. The sci-fi-ness of it will attract boy readers I think, but don't let the sci-fi look of it turn you away! There is so much more to it than that! SO good!