Wednesday, February 4, 2015

A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray [Joint Review!]

3 out of 5 Robots!

A Thousand Pieces of You
By Claudia Gray
Series: Firebird, #1
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Release: November 4, 2014
Hardcover:  368 Pages
Publisher: Harper Teen
My Copy: Library
Reviewer: Shannon & Julia

Book Summary:
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.
(Courtesy of the Publisher)

Julia & Shannon: Joint Review!
1. A Thousand Pieces of You is literally all over the place - what was your first thought of it after finishing? 
Shannon: My first thought was "That was entertaining". But it was a superficial entertainment. I feel like this book couldn't decide between wanting to be a romance and wanting to be sci-fi thriller. It definitely had both aspects and I enjoyed both aspects...but I'm not sure I enjoyed them together. There was also a lot of cliches, convenient plot devices, and clunky pacing. 

Julia: A Thousand Pieces of You is satisfyingly entertaining, but it didn't seem to have any focus. There is a fine flow to the novel, but then it stops for a few weeks in one dimension and we're not really getting to know anyone and nothing notable happens there that propels the story forward. It all seemed a bit thrown together, I'm not sure how else to describe it.
2. Marguerite visits quite a few different dimensions, which was your favorite and why? 
Shannon: I like Russia...but that's because I liked some of the new characters who pop up. Marguerite actually spends quite a bit of time here, so we also get to know this dimension the best. But this is also where the book goes from sci-fi thriller to romance. It seemed very incongruous with the rest of the book. But I'm not sure about the rest of the dimensions because we never spend much time there. The Underwater world seemed pretty cool. 

Julia: I also loved the Russian dimension. And really that's because we spent time getting to know her family from that time. It sucked though because then she just bounces out like it's nothing and we never hear what happens to those characters. It's like, here is a few weeks of romance and intrigue, now lets run around trying to figure stuff out and forget about all that. The other dimensions needed more time or the Russian one needed less.

3. Major love triangle. Thoughts? 
Shannon: Oy. The romance. Ok, first let's talk about the love triangle between Paul and Theo. I never really got it. I never really bought into it. It seemed unnecessary. Now, let's talk about the other weird romance aspect. Marguerite takes over the body of the Russian dimension's Marguerite. She ends up falling in love with someone and has a physical relationship. She tries to justify it by saying that this other Marguerite was also in love with this person so she wouldn't have minded. But I found the whole thing a little skeevy. I'm not an easily offended reader, but this gave me pause. Essentially Marguerite took away consent from Russian Marguerite. She doesn't even know if Russian Marguerite was aware of it happening. But Marguerite leaves the Russian dimension and leaves Russian Marguerite to deal with the fall out. This is even more troublesome given the outcome of the relationship between Marguerite and her lover. Russian Marguerite got the raw end of that deal. I'm actually surprised more people haven't called this out. People are more offended by Jacob watching Bella sleep. I think we tend to be blinded by romance and pretty feelings sometimes and don't take a step back to think of the larger picture. Anyways, it put a real cloud over my feelings about this book and Marguerite as a character. 

Julia: Everything Shannon said. I thought it was gross that she essentially possessed someone's body, slept with someone while in said body, then left. The relationship between Theo and Marguerite seemed forced, I didn't believe it. And I was grossed out about what she does to the Russian Marguerite without and thought of the consequences for the body she was in. I don't know, it was just skeezy and I had a hard time overlooking it and not thinking about it every time she spoke to Paul- even in other dimensions. 

4. Is the book lacking anything you wish it had? OR is there anything you'd take away? 
Shannon: Well, as I mentioned in my answer above, I would definitely change some of the things Marguerite does. Or at least I would have liked to see the consequences of those actions. 

Julia: I think the book is lacking some resolve with the Russian characters. I'm crossing my fingers that maybe we get to revisit that dimension in the sequel.... though who knows if I will even read the sequel.

5. That ending. No cliffhanger (thankfully!) But will we be reading the sequel? 
Shannon: Uhhh, I don't know. I would probably read it if it was available now. But in a year? I'm not sure what my interest level would be. Plus...I can already see the direction it is taking and I'm not sure I am into another "bring down the establishment" trilogy. 

Julia: This really should just be a standalone novel. It doesn't need to go anywhere else and the characters weren't likeable enough to keep me coming back. I'm only reading the sequel if Shannon decides to so we can talk about it together. Haha. 
6. What's your rating? Who are you recommending this to? 
Shannon: I give it 3.5 stars. I would have given it 4 stars if the romance wasn't so icky sometimes. 

Julia: I'm giving this 3 stars. It wasn't bad and it is entertaining so if you like young adult scifi, read this.

1 comment :

  1. When the ARC first became available I tried to get it any way I could, but didn't succeed. Then I happened to win a finished hardcover and was overjoyed, but it just kept getting lower and lower in my tbr pile, so I put it in my trade/giveaway contest pile. Sometimes when I walk past that bookcase, I feel a little uncertain and want to put it back with the other books. Your review has me feeling a bit better about its current position. :)



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