Check out what I thought abouT A Thousand Pieces of You and Ten Thousand Skies Above You by Claudia Gray!
Every Day meets Cloud Atlas in this heart-racing, space- and time-bending, epic new trilogy from New York Times bestselling author Claudia Gray.
Marguerite Caine’s physicist parents are known for their radical scientific achievements. Their most astonishing invention: the Firebird, which allows users to jump into parallel universes, some vastly altered from our own. But when Marguerite’s father is murdered, the killer—her parent’s handsome and enigmatic assistant Paul—escapes into another dimension before the law can touch him.
Marguerite can’t let the man who destroyed her family go free, and she races after Paul through different universes, where their lives entangle in increasingly familiar ways. With each encounter she begins to question Paul’s guilt—and her own heart. Soon she discovers the truth behind her father’s death is more sinister than she ever could have imagined.
A Thousand Pieces of You explores a reality where we witness the countless other lives we might lead in an amazingly intricate multiverse, and ask whether, amid infinite possibilities, one love can endure.
Last Christmas, one book on my wishlist was the beautiful and highly anticipated A Thousand Pieces of You. I’d read Claudia’s Evernight series and her standalone novel Fateful and was really looking forward to this book. The premise blew me away and OH MAN, that cover should have been illegal. Also, I was totally hooked on Orphan Black, so I was excited to see a lot of nature vs nurture at play in all the alternate dimensions and alternate Marguerites.
I was convinced this book could not fail.
And then it did.
I can’t even explain to you how sad I was. The pacing totally died for me once Marguerite ended up stuck in Russia as a princess with no explanation of how that happened. But even before the book fell apart there, I was letdown with all the alternate worlds. Marguerite was basically the same person in all of them. Nothing really felt alternate. But then we got to Russia and the plot diverged into a sappy love story, which I was not expecting at all. This super cheesy ‘Every me loves every version of you’ developed and overtook the entire story.
I know I’m in the minority based on the glowing Goodreads reviews (and even my Reading Twin liked it more than me). Basically, on every level, book one did not work for me. But I was curious about book two and with a pretty cover like that, I couldn’t resist. And I’m so glad I did!
This book was a massive improvement on book one. Like, it undid all of the cheesiness of book one and subverted a lot of tropes and also dug deeper into why the alternate versions of the characters stayed pretty similar to the main character versions. There were even consequences of decisions made in the long slog through Russia of book one–which is amazing because I didn’t expect to ever see that world again. But there are consequences! I really love when books actually address consequences or the fallout of breaking world building rules, and it’s sadly rare in books (or at least in books I’ve read).
I also felt like the alternate worlds were better drawn this time. They came alive in a way they didn’t in book one, for me. I’m still massively annoyed at the heteronormativity of this series, and hopefully that will change in book three, but as far as world building goes, this book was an improvement.
I pretty much tore through this book. The voice exploded from the pages. Maybe I just don’t remember one well enough cause I was so disappointed by it, but I felt like I really got Marguerite in this one. Pacing never really died for me like it did before and I read this in like a day or two compared to the week it took to read book one. I didn’t have that same feeling of dread of having to push myself through a book. I was totally on board and so hooked by this book.
There were a few scenes I thought could have been cut or shortened, but on the whole, I really enjoyed this book. I was a little dismayed with the ending though. There’s no real payoff for the stakes in this book and I needed a little more to be satisfied as a reader. The overarching plot also got a little unwieldy, but I’m still hanging on!
I’ll definitely be reading book three. I’m so happy book two was a much better reading experience: deeper world building, actual consequences from book one reverberated throughout, and the cheesiness of book one was deconstructed here.
“I would love you in any shape, in any world, with any past.” <– I know I said it was cheesy, but I like the sentiment! 🙂
Marguerite of book two was so amazing, but I also love Theo! Real Theo, not *spoiler spoiler*