While on a scavenging trip with her father, Amy is accidentally trapped in New Lithisle in Rondi Bauer Olson’s All Things Now Living. At first, her only goal is to escape, but when she meets Daniel, a New Lithisle boy, she begins to question how less-than-human the people of New Lithisle are. Amy’s feelings grow even more conflicted when she learns she didn’t end up in New Lithisle by mistake. Her father is secretly a sympathizer. Time is running short and Amy has to decide if she will bring the computer program her father wrote to his contact or save herself. Installing the program could prevent the dome’s collapse, but if Amy doesn’t find her father’s contact in time, she’ll die, along with everyone else.
Stay up all night reading this thrilling new book from Rondi and enter to win a Kindle Fire!
About the Book:
When I first picked up All Things Living by Rondi Bauer Olson, I was excited because it’s a Christian young adult dystopian. Unfortunately, this wasn’t for me. Writing negative reviews is one of my least favorite things because I understand how much work and time goes into writing a book. So nothing I write in this review is in any way meant to bash or be mean towards the author, but to provide some helpful insight as a reader on how the author can improve.
When I first read the blurb on what the book was about, I was intrigued about pig people being trapped in a dome (the aegis). I love the TV show Under the Dome so I thought that alone was interesting enough to pick this up. Instead, I found myself having a lot of issues.
The Plot. It was different and unique, but also quite a cliche. It is a quick read with quite a bit of action so I found myself finishing. However, it just seemed random and all over the place. The plot mostly focuses on shutting down the aegis, which is great. It needed to be shut down and was perfect for the book. Since it’s a dystopian world with people who were alternating themselves with animal mutations, I wanted to know what would cause humans to do this. Was there some kind of disease? Obviously, the dome was meant to keep them inside, but why? There was no explanation about any of this so I found myself confused as to what was happening most of the time.
The characters. While I did like Amy, I found her kind of annoying at the same time. She’s a sixteen-year-old girl, but quite often would do things that seemed younger than her age. She also seems to get distracted when it comes to Daniel. She’s thrown into some intense situations and all she can think about is him and does something dumb. It was also kind of odd that we’re in a neat futuristic world with neat gadgets and food and all she wants is canned spaghetti.
There are some good things that I enjoyed about her character though. While she was selfish in the beginning and only wanted to save herself, she chooses to do the right thing and tries to save the people living New Lithisle. She cares about the people she’s come to know. Overall, she just felt two-dimensional.
The worldbuilding. When I read a fantasy and a dystopian novel, the worldbuilding is a must. I was intrigued by a futuristic, dystopian and cool world, but there wasn’t too much description of it so I was often confused. It wasn’t consistent. Especially when we are told that there aren’t any animals in the aegis, but we Fin-head purchasing burgers at a drive-thru. I was also confused about how they have all of these cool gadgets and cool cars, but not know what helicopter is.
The romance. The romance seemed like it was the entire focus of the book. It felt rushed, forced, and unrealistic. Amy meets Daniel and instantly thinks he’s cute. Nothing wrong with that. What bothered me was that the characters were already kissing only a chapters into the book. Insta-love just doesn’t work and only annoys your readers. Allow the characters to develop a friendship and then let the romance develop naturally.
This wasn’t the worst book that I’ve read, but it wasn’t the best. I’m honestly not sure I’d even recommend this book. It wasn’t for me so please don’t choose to not read this book just because I didn’t like it. For all I know, you might. Although, it’s slow in the beginning, it’s easily a quick read. I found many parts of the book interesting even though they weren’t well executed. It has a ton of potential that I’d probably read the next book in the series.
Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher for my honest review, which I have given. I was not required to write a positive review and have not been compensated for it in any way. All opinions expressed are my own.
One grand prize winner will receive:
- A copy of All Things Now Living
- A Kindle Fire
Enter today by clicking the icon below, but hurry! The giveaway ends on December 14. The winner will be announced December 15 on the Litfuse blog.