Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for Gravity by Melissa West from Entangled Publishing. The tour is hosted by Itching for Books. This is the first book in Melissa West's The Taking series. There is also a giveaway going on associated with this tour, so be sure to enter that below. You can check out the rest of the stops on the tour here. Thanks so much for stopping by!
Gravity (The Taking #1)
by Melissa West
Expected Publication Date: October 30, 2012
Publisher: Entangled Publishing
In the future, only one rule will matter:
Don’t. Ever. Peek.
Seventeen-year-old Ari Alexander just broke that rule and saw the last person she expected hovering above her bed — arrogant Jackson Locke, the most popular boy in her school. She expects instant execution or some kind of freak alien punishment, but instead, Jackson issues a challenge: help him, or everyone on Earth will die.
Ari knows she should report him, but everything about Jackson makes her question what she’s been taught about his kind. And against her instincts, she’s falling for him. But Ari isn’t just any girl, and Jackson wants more than her attention. She’s a military legacy who’s been trained by her father and exposed to war strategies and societal information no one can know — especially an alien spy, like Jackson. Giving Jackson the information he needs will betray her father and her country, but keeping silent will start a war.
Of note: This was an eARC received by the publisher for review and may have some revisions in the final copy.
My Thoughts: Don't. Ever. Peek. When I saw that sentence, of course I knew I had to read this book. The year is 2040. The world as we know it no longer exists. After being destroyed by war, an agreement is established with an alien race, known at the Ancients. The earth no longer is able to produce food, but the Ancients have a special ability to make that happen. In exchange for this, each night the Ancients come in and perform "the taking," from the humans. Each human has one Ancient assigned to them. At midnight they come in and the "exchange" takes place, with the Ancient absorbing the necessary vitamins, energy, etc. from the human. There is one rule, a rule that is never to be broken. The humans are to wear a patch preventing them from seeing and moving, and they are to never look. As it happens, Ari Alexander breaks that rule and opens her eyes to see Jackson Locke, one of the most popular boys at her school, hovering over her.
Ari Alexander is the daughter of the military commander and is destined to take over that position one day herself. Her dad is tough, unrelenting, and highly demanding, so Ari has trained day and night in preparation for her future. Jackson Locke is hot, the girls fall all over him, he seems to be the best at everything, and he is Ari's biggest competition at school. Her best friends are Lawrence and Gretchen. Lawrence also happens to be the son of the President, and Gretchen's father works for Ari's dad. Lawrence and Ari also have prearranged destinies planned for them by their parents.
After Ari finds out who Jackson really is, he asks her to trust him and to help him, or everyone is dead. The whole goal of the treaty has been for the two races, the humans and the Ancients, to coexist together on the planet, after the Ancients acclimate to it. After agreeing to help, a series of events begin to unfold, a web of secrets is discovered, terrorist type attacks occur and escalate, and the agendas of both races are in question. Hints of war break out and Ari is forced to make a decision between loyalty the government or taking a stand against things that are wrong, as the threat of war increases. Ari and Jackson's relationship quickly turns intense, and though forbidden, they can't seem to stay apart. Jackson has secrets, big secrets, secrets including who he really is, who Lawrence really is, and the truth behind what is going on. Will these secrets destroy any chance these two have at a relationship? Ari must decide if her love for Jackson is strong enough to trust him, despite his secrets, especially when she finds out what is happening to her and what she must do to survive, and insure the survival of others like her.
I really liked this book. I love science fiction, especially when there is romance involved. Gravity also has a dystopian feel to it, which made me like it even more. I loved Ari's character. She was a kick butt heroine, tough, determined, yet willing to make difficult choices when it came to the welfare of others and the good of the entire race. I loved Jackson to. It says he is arrogant in the synopsis, and he comes off that way, but he's really a great guy despite all his secrets, and he really loves Ari, not to mention the fact that he is very hot. Lawrence seems sort of passive, but rises up and does what is right and necessary when faced with the truth, and he is a hottie to. Gretchen is Ari's best friend, who accepts her without judgement, even when she finds out Ari's darkest secrets. Once I got into this book, I was hooked, and couldn't wait to find out where the story was going. The plot kept building and escalating as the book went on, as did the romance, which was mixed in. The ending is intense, and leaves you dying for the next book in the series to see what is going to happen next, and I can't wait to find out what that is. If you love science fiction, romance, and dystopia, then his is one YA book you should check out.
Ari - Tracy Spiridokas
Jackson - Alex Pettyfer
Lawrence - Tyler Posey
Gretchen - Crystal Reed
Ari's Dad - Billy Burke
Ari's Mom - Maria Bello
I glance up at it and then to Jackson, the words tumbling from my mouth before I can remember that I'm not supposed to ask. "What's that liquid that's always in your hair when you come for the Taking? I mean, it's not water. It tastes too good to be water." He grins. "Tastes? Have you been licking me and I never knew it?"
His eyes rise to mine, broken, worried....afraid. I drop to my knees, lost for words. He bites his lip and shakes his head and all I want to do is make it better. Somehow make it better. He lifts his hands to my face, tracing a line down my jaw. His fingertips hesitate at my lips, and his gaze drops. I draw a breath, and then his lips find mine. It's an explosion of emotions - first warmth, then contentment, then fear, so much fear.
"You shouldn't love me, but assuming you ignore me, like always, know this: I am absolutely, mind-bendingly in love with you. In every way. Every ounce of my body. My entire being...it belongs to you."
Melissa lives in a tiny suburb of Atlanta, GA with her husband and daughter. She pretends to like yoga, actually likes shoes, and could not live without coffee. Her writing heroes include greats like Jane Austen and Madeleine L'Engle.
She holds a B.A. in Communication Studies and an M.S. in Graphic Communication, both from Clemson University. Yeah, her blood runs orange.
Gravity is her first novel.
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