Author: J.A. Souders
Series: Elysium Chronicles, #2
Released: November 5th 2013
Publisher: Tor Teen
Hardcover, 352 pages
Source: Publisher for review
Buy: The Book Depository
Six weeks after her arrival on the Surface, Evelyn Winters is no closer to unlocking the memories lost in her subconscious than she was when she first came. Isolated in a strange new society, Evie has only Gavin Hunter to remind her of who she once was.But even with a clean slate, it’s easy to see that Evie doesn’t fit in on the Surface. And as her differences make her feel more and more alone, she can’t help but yearn for that place she doesn’t remember: the isolated city hidden in the depths of the ocean. Elysium. Home.But she can’t exactly tell Gavin what she’s feeling. Not when he’s the one who helped her escape Elysium in the first place, and has the scars to prove it. Though the doctors say otherwise, Gavin believes that Evie just needs time. And if her memories don’t come back, well, maybe she’s better off not remembering her past.But the decision may be out of their hands when Evie’s ever-elusive memories begin to collide with reality. People and images from her past appear in the most unlikely places, haunting her, provoking her…and making her seem not only strange but dangerous.Evie and Gavin can’t wait around for her memories to return. They’ll have to journey across the Outlands of the Surface to find help, and in the end, their search may just lead them back to the place it all started…
Revelations was very high on my list of most coveted sequels in 2013. I was encouraged to read the first book Elysium Chronicles by some of my most trusted friends and I never regretted the decision – Elysium, the world Souders created under water, is seductive and frightening, beautiful on the outside and rotten and dangerous on the inside.
In Revelations, Souders succeded in transferring that same feeling of dread above ground. Evie, Gavin and Gavin’s former best friend Asher travel to the city in hopes of finding a cure for Evie’s memory loss and her inexplicable sleepwalking. Desperate for answers, they embark on a journey through forests full of predators and other dangers, armed with nothing more than a gun.
Evie and Gavin get separated for almost half of this book – a good thing, since it gives Evie a chance to grow and make her own decisions, wrong as they may be. As much as I like him, in trying to protect Evie, Gavin tends to behave patronizingly towards her, hiding facts from her and outright telling her what to do. This is the sort of behavior that can turn me against a character in a heartbeat, even one as kind and well-meaning as Gavin.
While entertaining and easily lovable, Asher is a character we’ve met many, many times before. He is the hero’s former best friend, now despised due to some error/misunderstanding on his part. He is mischievous, he takes everything far too lightly, but when he’s needed, he always comes through. I would have enjoyed meeting him more had he not reminded me of Puck on every corner.
Contrary to how it may sound, Revelations does not have a love triangle. I can’t deny the fact that Asher has feelings for Evie, but the nature of those feelings is still unclear, and Evie never for a second thinks about responding to them. She is utterly devoted to Gavin and Gavin to her, and while Asher poses a nice distraction for us readers, he is never a real threat to the relationship between our POV characters.
As a villain, Mother lacks details and motivations that would take her from merely scary to truly memorable and petrifying. There is so much potential in this character, but in order to reach it, Souders has to give her just a touch of humanity to make the awful sides of her stand out in even sharper contrast. This is not a person to mess with, that much is clear, she is deranged and delusional, completely incapable of feeling remorse, but I can’t stop myself from wishing for more from her. Hopefully, Souders will deliver.
Revelations does suffer from a middle book syndrome just a tiny bit, and I didn’t appreciate the cliffhanger in the least, but overall, it is a worthy sequel and it left me desperate for the conclusion of the series.
A copy of this book was kindly provided by the publisher for review purposes. No considerations, monetary or otherwise, have influenced the opinions expressed in this review.