Chapter 12 was where things started to get good. Amy receives a message from Orion, the “mystery antagonist” from Across the Universe, and through a series of clues, she and Elder try to solve a mystery and discover even more secrets surrounding Godspeed’s existence. After that, the next 60 chapters breezed by, and I was never once bored, annoyed, or unhappy with A Million Suns.
Okay, let me just say that A Million Suns is still predictible, but unlike Across the Universe, this predictibility is because Revis did everything right in setting up her mystery. There were suitable red herrings, interesting side detours, appropriate foreshadowing moments. See, if you write a good mystery, the reader should see the plot twist coming, just not 300 pages in advance.
Also, I’m really, really digging the romance that Revis puts out. Number one, there’s no love triangle. Number two, the relationship between Amy and Elder is the complete opposite of insta-love, and it’s fantastic. Amy’s an awesome female protagonist. Multiple times, she tell Elder that she doesn’t want to choose him just because there’s no one else their age to fall in love with. To me, that speaks of a rational young woman with a good head on her shoulders.
Oh yeah, and all the secrets! Just because I can see a big reveal coming doesn’t mean it’s not surprising or anything. If you look at it from Amy and Elder’s standpoint, you think you know something, but that’s a lie. And then you find out the person who told you a lie was being lied to, and that even then, those lies were being covered up because the truth was “too scary.” Very, very complex plot weaving here.
Verdict: I thought Across the Universe was pretty good for a YA debut, and I expected A Million Suns to follow along in the “prety good” vein. But A Millions Suns completely blew everything else out of the water; it was really fantastic, and it’s obvious that Beth Revis has learned from past mistakes and made an attempt to improve.