Thursday, October 13, 2011

Glow by Amy Kathleen Ryan Review

By Amy Kathleen Ryan

Sept. 13, 2011
St. Martin's Griffin, 320 pages
Source: Publisher

If a violent battle destroyed the only world you’ve ever known, would you be brave enough to save who was left? Would love be strong enough to survive the fight? Either way, there’s no turning back.

The Empyrean is the only home 15-year-old Waverly has ever known. Part of the first generation to be successfully conceived in deep space, she and her boyfriend Kieran will be pioneers of New Earth. Waverly knows she must marry young in order to have children who can carry on the mission, and Kieran, the handsome captain-to-be, has everything Waverly could want in a husband. Everyone is sure he’s the best choice. Still, there’s a part of Waverly that wants more from life than marriage, and she is secretly intrigued by the shy, darkly brilliant Seth.

Suddenly, Waverly’s dreams are interrupted by the inconceivable – a violent betrayal by the Empyrean's sister ship, the New Horizon. The New Horizon’s leaders are desperate to populate the new planet first, and will do anything to get what they need: young girls. In one pivotal moment, Waverly and Kieran are separated, and find themselves at the helm of dangerous missions, where every move has potentially devastating consequences, and decisions of the heart may lead to disaster.

— description

I love science fiction. Do I go to conventions and watch Star Trek and all that? Heck no. (Not that there's anything wrong with that.)

But I think there's a lot to love about this genre. The concepts of settling a new world, of being enclosed in as regulated a society as a spaceship, of leaving behind everything you know and love...they're just ripe for teen angst. It can make some great YA literature.

Unfortunately, I'm not sure it added up in this book. I came into Glow expecting to read about the elements of sci-fi that I love, but instead came away with a strong feeling that this book's main theme was religion. Not my cup of tea.

Plus, the characters were quite unlikable. Granted, they are put in the middle an unexpected intergalactic war, in which case I'm pretty sure I'd be unlikable too. But, you know, it was hard for me as a reader.

Still, those who love this genre might want to give it a go to see for themselves. I'd also recommend checking out Across the Universe by Beth Revis.

Anna Reads young adult book blog


  1. Ahhh man. I am actually reading this one next and now I'm a little nervous. I'll keep my expectations low. CAN'T WIN 'EM ALL.

  2. I recently started this one and I'm having a hard time getting into it. I went in excepting a lot from it, especially since it's compared to another well known series (which I think has hurt this book a bit). It's hard when you sit down to read a book and you really want to like, and you end up walking away not liking it at all.

  3. I'm not sure I'd read this book, but I wanted to comment because I just checked out Across the Universe from the library yesterday and am super excited to read it!

  4. hahahaha, I might be a little unlikeable thrown into the middle of a galactic war as well! hahaha, that comment made my morning!!

  5. I'm sad you didn't like this one :[ I was really looking forward to the scifi-yness of it all.

  6. I struggled with the creepy factor in the beginning of this book but then about a third of the way through found it quite intriguing. It wasn't hard to see where it was going and where the next book will probably go as well.


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