Oct 2, 2011

Review: Glow by Amy Kathleen Ryan

Title: Glow
Author: Amy Kathleen Ryan
Publisher:  St. Martin’s Griffin
Publication Date: 9.27.2011
Pages: 307
Genre: Sci-Fi, Dystopian
Series: Yes (Sky Chasers #1)
Source: ARC from publisher for review

Rating: B+

Summary (from Goodreads):
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.

I’ll be upfront and say that Sci-Fi novels usually aren’t my cup of tea, but there’s something about Glow that just drew me in from page 1. Maybe it’s because Amy Kathleen Ryan created a world so realistic, so visceral, that I couldn’t help myself. Maybe it’s because the characters are complex and the plot is powerful. It’s probably an electrifying combination of all of the above.

I loved Waverly as a character. When the girls are kidnapped, she becomes their leader as the oldest. They look to her, and she has the insight to not only realize something is very wrong with the way the girls were taken, but also the intelligence to know she has to play along while on board the New Horizon. She was a joy to read from start to finish. I loved her sections in the novel and was often fighting the urge to skip ahead and stay with her story instead of reading what was happening to those left behind on the Empyrean.

The other two leads, Kieran and Seth, were somewhat more … disturbing for me to read. I felt like Kieran was a weak leader, and he was very black and white. I also didn’t feel the chemistry between him and Waverly the way I did between Waverly and Seth. The problem with Seth is that I felt he went from shy, bad boy to crazy, psycho boy. I honestly have no idea who I’d prefer Waverly with—I feel Kieran is too wishy-washy and Seth is too unpredictable (and not in a fun way). I’m assuming that we’ll later learn more about their reasons for doing things in later books and that will help me make a better choice. But for this book, I didn’t really enjoy either.

The Sky Chasers series is definitely going to be big. You can tell that from reading the blurb. It’s futuristic, it’s dramatic and it’s insanely intense. While I don’t usually like to be as in the dark as I feel with this book, sometimes it’s good not to know where the story (and characters) are going. There were several plot twists in this book that left me breathless. I can’t wait to see what Ryan has in store for the rest of the series.


  1. I loved this book! I feel you described Seth perfectly, with his always-changing attitude! I don't know who I want Waverly with, either!
    Great review:D

  2. I'm looking forward to reading this one! I think I'll be getting it in audio for review, at least I was supposed to, haha.

  3. I loved this one. Glad you did too! Can't wait for #2... Hoping it is at BEA this year:)

  4. Awesome review! I hope to read this book soon!

    Rumana @ Relook the Book

  5. Great review! The more I hear about this book, the more I want to snag a copy. I love sci-fi so this is a perfect for for me. Thanks for your excellent descriptions!

  6. I really enjoyed this book but I was the same as you: I adored Waverley's story and had to keep stopping myself from jumping forward to her parts! I didn't so much like the story of the boys left behind and I didn't particularly like Kieran (I felt he became kinda psycho too!) or Seth. I loved how the author drew religion into the story though and how nothing was black and white as to who the real antagonists were! I'm really looking forward to book 2.

  7. I've been interested in this book. Thanks for the review!

  8. Sci-Fi isn't one of my favorite genres, but this book proved to be much better than I expected! I was a little hesitant at first, but thanks to your review, I checked it out. (And loved it :D)

  9. This book was kind of a weird one for me. I ended up enjoying it but something about was a bit off. I am excited to read the next one and see how I feel about the series then.


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