Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Inside Out & Outside In by Maria V. Snyder

Inside Out
By Maria V. Snyder
April 1, 2010
Harlequin, 384 pages

I'm Trella. I'm a scrub. A nobody. One of thousands who work the lower levels, keeping Inside clean for the Uppers. I've got one friend, do my job and try to avoid the Pop Cops. So what if I occasionally use the pipes to sneak around the Upper levels? The only neck at risk is my own…until I accidentally start a rebellion and become the go-to girl to lead a revolution.

— Amazon.com description

This book really took me back to a time (what up, '90s!) when I adored books like Sphere by Michael Crichton. I suppose you could call this dystopian, but to me Inside Out is a perfect example of science fiction.

It's been so long since I read a book like this that it took a bit of getting used to. Most of the books I read are very emotion heavy, and this just isn't. It's all about the suspense and the technicalities and science of Trella's world. The emotion and the romance seem like a bit of an afterthought.

But that's okay—I'm happy I tried something different, because, in the end, this book was completely gratifying. I'd definitely recommend it to anyone who feels like a little sci-fi to shake things up.

Outside In
By Maria V. Snyder
February 15, 2011
Harlequin, 336 pages

Me? A leader? Okay, I did prove that there's more to Inside than we knew.

That a whole world exists beyond this cube we live in. And finding that led to a major rebellion—between worker scrubs like me and the snobby uppers who rule our world. Make that ruled. Because of me, we're free. I thought that meant I was off the hook, and could go off on my own again—while still touching base with Riley, of course. He's the one upper I think I can trust. But then we learned that there's outside and then there is Outside.

And something from Outside wants In.

— Amazon.com description

So after I devoured the first book, I immediately picked up the sequel, which comes out today!

I didn't love it as much as the first book, but it really succeeded in terms of suspense. Reading this is like creeping down a dark hallway and not knowing what's around the corner. Maria V. Snyder knows her plot. She keeps you breathless, frightened of what's going to happen when you turn the page.

But I started to get overly frustrated with the adults in Trella's world, and that distracted me. They played a larger part in this novel than in the first, and while I realize this is an alternative reality, I still feel like the adults should have stepped in and done SOMETHING. Anything! Who leaves the fate of an entire society in the hands of a reluctant teenager?

Then again, without the adults and their ignorance and helplessness, there would be no plot! So, overall, this is a captivating, thrilling series. Glad I tried something different!

You might also like: Sphere by Michael Crichton (Old school!)

Anna Reads young adult book blog


  1. Go you for trying something different :) I'm not sure these are up my alley but I might give them a try.

  2. I did the same exact thing Anna! I finished the first one. I already had the 2nd one loaded up on the nook and I started it right away.

    Definitely a great story!

  3. I really enjoyed these two books as well and I looove her Poison Study series, which I think is better than this one.

  4. You should read the freakin' amazing Poison Study. I love that book so much, and it helped me how to remember Valence Electrons in science!

  5. I've been wanting read Inside Out forever, but I'm kind of glad I've waited until the sequel came out. Really looking forward to these, great review! :)

  6. I screwed up and started reading the NetGalley for Outside IN before reading the first one. The whole time I was thinking, "Wait, shouldn't there be a book before this??" I finally figured it out, but the second book was so good that I kept reading it anyway! Nice post!

  7. I second the Poison Study recommendation. Those books are freakin awesome.

    I mean, I liked Inside Out and Outside In, but they aren't Snyder's best, and well, I see it as the books only get better from here.


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