Thursday, December 24, 2015

[Review] A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray

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A Thousand Pieces of You
Claudia Gray
[Firebird #1]
YA, Sci-fi, Romance
Published: November 2014 (Harper Teen)
Format: digital
Pages: 368
Rating: ★★★☆☆
 
Marguerite Caine’s physicist parents are known for their radical scientific achievements. Their most astonishing invention: the Firebird, which allows users to jump into parallel universes, some vastly altered from our own. But when Marguerite’s father is murdered, the killer—her parent’s handsome and enigmatic assistant Paul—escapes into another dimension before the law can touch him.

Marguerite can’t let the man who destroyed her family go free, and she races after Paul through different universes, where their lives entangle in increasingly familiar ways. With each encounter she begins to question Paul’s guilt—and her own heart. Soon she discovers the truth behind her father’s death is more sinister than she ever could have imagined.

A Thousand Pieces of You explores a reality where we witness the countless other lives we might lead in an amazingly intricate multiverse, and ask whether, amid infinite possibilities, one love can endure.

Warning: Possible spoilers

I've never read a "time travel" story before, not that it is technically time travel. It's dimension hopping and it works pretty well, I think. I like the build of the world and the explanations as to why this dimension hopping works. It all flows rather naturally.

I liked the different worlds that Marguerite travels to. These different versions of the world are my absolute favorite thing! They are different and I would love to see so many more! From underwater worlds to the Russian Empire taking a different turn, you never know where Marguerite will end up. These new views are probably why I continued reading the book, if I'm being honest. They really fascinated me in a way that the plot itself didn't.

The plot it rather simple, which isn't a bad thing. Easy to follow, for one. Meg goes into the multiverse with intentions of killing her father's murderer. But of course nothing is as it seems and everything she thought she knew isn't always true. So through a series of events, she winds up helping certain people and there is a twist that I thought was pretty obvious, but needed.

The notion that a person's soul is connected throughout different dimensions is sweet and makes the book less of a sci-fi action and more of a romance. So please don't read this if you want action as a constant. At some point it takes a backseat, which is a shame, but if you read this book as a romance, you'll end up hating on it less. Even so, the plot still develops and the villain turns out to be someone with a lot of potential as a villain. It's not really a surprise, but I like what it turns into.

The characters are probably the hardest part for me to get into.

Marguerite is smart and artistically inclined, and I love the differences she notices between her art style and another Merguerite's. But for all her smarts, she can be really quick to jump to conclusions and find the wrong answer. She does some things that I don't agree with, and in the end she winds up regretting her choices and is more slow to the draw. She learns from her mistakes. But if she had thought it through to begin with, she wouldn't have anything to be sorry for. I like the relationship that she has with her parents. They are both extremely important to her and they are both their own vibrant characters. None of that generic YA parent junk here.

Paul is a very different sort of character for a young adult book. He is shy and not much of a talker. He's blunt, but not because he's trying to be mean. I liked him as a character when he was more fleshed out, but he wasn't fleshed out enough for my liking.

Theo is more the sort I think of when I think of a YA love interest. He's flirty and laughs a lot. He's a little full of himself, but not in a annoying way. He's basically perfect, and yet has his downfalls. I liked him and disliked him in a constant turntable the entire book. I just never knew how I felt about him (which has it's reasons).

In the end, I didn't really like any of the characters. They all felt so boring, which is a shame. Hopefully this is remedied in the second book.

There was a love triangle, and even though Marguerite made her choice fairly quick, it was still unnecessary, in my opinion. I didn't add to the story at all, but it's whatever.

Ohh, there was actually sex, and even though it was glossed over, it still happened. I liked that. Usually YA books have a blushing girl that will just die at the thought of a kiss or, gosh, holding hands! That is so unrealistic to me. Not every person is like that. At some point her period was mentioned as well. I just- Yes! Thank you!

TL;DR

Good:
+ pacing
+ variety of worlds
+ interesting concept
+ good villains
+ family relationships
+ overall premises

Bad:
- needs more action
- love triangle
- characters need development/seemed flat

Final Rating: ★★★☆☆