: Julie Bertagna
Genre: Dystopian, Young Adult, Teen
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
Exodus tells a unique, interesting and compelling story. However it is a story that should be told in 2-3 books ~200 pages each, instead of the 368 pages it is.
We are taken to a time on Earth when the ice caps have melted and much of the Earth is under water. To a small community in what was once England/Stonehenge who are looking ground to the ocean every year. This portion of the story is very well developed and gives us a solid base for our main gal to develop her character and cleverness.
From here we travel to one of the 'sky cities' that are a marvel of engineering built way up above the ocean. But of course, as is always the case with dystopian fiction, there is not enough room for everyone and so any newcomers are condemed to remain outside of the seawall that protects this sky city.
I won't go into details after this as that would ruin the progression of the story. But at one point our lead gal meets with Treenesters (who are easily my favourite of all the group she meets). This group of people has so much literary potential to work with and Julie Bertagna only barely taps into it. I could easily have read a whole book about this group, it's challenges, beliefs and construct.
Really a story outline
With the exception of the opening few chapters on the small island and the occasional chapter throughout Exodus feels like a story outline that deserves, if not begs, for more to be revealed about it. Bertagna has all these wonderous characters in extreme situations and instead of really looking at those characters and their way of life she rushes us through a (albeit interesting) dystopian plot that at times feels so convenient you'd think you bought the resolutions at a convenience store. This is a sign of under developed writing. Authors should be able to make you feel like the characters survived because they deserved to, or made that future happen; not just because someone opened a door at the perfect time.
I'd definitely read Julie Bertagna again in the future as I think she has lot of potential as a writer. Unfortunately Exodus just is rushed and doesn't do justice to the elaborate and interesting world she has built.
|Please note: I received an eARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley. This is an honest and unbiased review.|