Review Friday: Glow by Kathleen Ryan

Sky Chasers #1

Goodreads Blurb:
What if you were bound for a new world, about to pledge your life to someone you’d been promised to since birth, and one unexpected violent attack made survival—not love—the issue?

Out in the murky nebula lurks an unseen enemy: the New Horizon. On its way to populate a distant planet in the wake of Earth’s collapse, the ship’s crew has been unable to conceive a generation to continue its mission. They need young girls desperately, or their zealous leader’s efforts will fail. Onboard their sister ship, the Empyrean, the unsuspecting families don’t know an attack is being mounted that could claim the most important among them…

Fifteen-year-old Waverly is part of the first generation to be successfully conceived in deep space; she was born on the Empyrean, and the large farming vessel is all she knows. Her concerns are those of any teenager—until Kieran Alden proposes to her. The handsome captain-to-be has everything Waverly could ever want in a husband, and with the pressure to start having children, everyone is sure he’s the best choice. Except for Waverly, who wants more from life than marriage—and is secretly intrigued by the shy, darkly brilliant Seth.

But when the Empyrean faces sudden attack by their assumed allies, they quickly find out that the enemies aren’t all from the outside.”

This book was fine…  There were several things that kept me from truly enjoying it like I would have liked.  The one thing that comes to mind right away is the complete lack of background information.  I’d have loved the book to have a prologue from another person’s perspective that was from when the ships first launched and what things were like.  I understand that the main character, Waverly, doesn’t know much about it because the adults don’t talk about it but it left me in the dark and some things were really confusing because of it.   For example, there was no background about the ship and how it worked.  I was picturing something totally different and all of a sudden they’re talking about securing the farm equipment!  How on earth do you get farm equipment on a space ship?  How is it even big enough for that?  How could they have possibly built it on Earth and launched it?  All unanswered questions.

I did like the storyline and how it was incorporated.  The world building left something to be desired but the action and motivations were great.

Speaking of the plot, I’m not quite sure how I feel about the way religion is portrayed.  I hope that in the next book, the author shows that religion can have a good side.  So far, all that’s been shown is the ugly side of religion and what happens when people corrupt it for their own motivations and goals.  Religion can be a beautiful thing that makes the world a better place as well as an ideal that can corrupt lives.  I feel like it’s really important for the author to show both sides in this case and she hasn’t so far.

Also, a word about the characters.  They were so gullible that sometimes I just couldn’t stand it.  I understand that you’ve spent the past 50 or so years but still!  And then, suddenly, they’d have some common sense or display some extraordinary smarts before reverting back.  It just was slightly out of the realm of realistic.

A quite note about the romance as well.  It was fine really.  It wasn’t extraordinary and I’m already forgetting the details but I did like seeing how the two boys (Kieran and Seth) affected and brought out different sides of Waverly.  It kind of reminded me of the Legend series (most specifically Champion) and how Day and Andren brought out two different sides of June.

Despite all of that (I’m sorry this is really negative….) I did like the idea and I will be reading the next book to find out what happens next (and if they ever reach their destination).

The Final Verdict:
All in all, I was rather disappointed in the execution of this book although it is a brilliant idea.  The plot was very good and suspenseful but the way the world was built as well as how religion is portrayed irked me a bit.
2 stars

“You’re so naïve.” Felicity laughed scornfully. “Don’t you see what people are? They’re animals. Every one of them.”
“Felicity.” Waverly grabbed hold of the girl’s hand and squeezed hard enough to hurt, until Felicity lifted her eyes to Waverly’s. “We’re animals, too. We can fight back.”
Felicity yanked her hand away. “You idiot. It doesn’t matter how hard you fight.”
“It matters to me,” Waverly said quietly.
“So fight, then,” Felicity spat over her shoulder.
Waverly stood up, fists clenched. “I will.” 

“We do matter. To believe that our lives are meaningful is the essence of faith. We are not as large, or as bright, or as eternal as the stars, but we carry humankind’s message of love across the galaxy. We are the first. We are the world makers. Our nourishment is hope. Like the tender reed shaking in the wind, we will reach up to a new sun.” 

“There is a design working behind the curtain of the stars, and we are fulfilling it, drawn toward the future on the tide of time, toward our destiny as the first settlers of a new world.”
The room was still. He has them, she thought.” 

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