Kayla’s Review of “Sky in the Deep” by Adrienne Young

About Kayla’s Review of “Sky in the Deep” on The Book Brontosaurus

“Part of what got us to create this blog was a group of people on TikTok who had decided to start a book club. I’d never heard of “Sky in the Deep” but it was chosen as the June book of the month for 2020. I was intrigued by the description and really wanted a community to discuss this reading with so I decided to give it a chance.” – Kayla


Book Information:

Title: Sky in the Deep
Author: Adrienne Young
Page Count: 352
Release Date: April 24, 2018
Publisher: Wednesday Books

Content Warning: Violence

Summary:
“Raised to be a warrior, seventeen-year-old Eelyn fights alongside her Aska clansmen in an ancient, rivalry against the Riki clan. Her life is brutal but simple: fight and survive. Until the day she sees the impossible on the battlefield—her brother, fighting with the enemy—the brother she watched die five years ago.

Faced with her brother’s betrayal, she must survive the winter in the mountains with the Riki, in a village where every neighbor is an enemy, every battle scar possibly one she delivered. But when the Riki village is raided by a ruthless clan thought to be a legend, Eelyn is even more desperate to get back to her beloved family.

She is given no choice but to trust Fiske, her brother’s friend, who sees her as a threat. They must do the impossible: unite the clans to fight together, or risk being slaughtered one by one. Driven by a love for her clan and her growing love for Fiske, Eelyn must confront her own definition of loyalty and family while daring to put her faith in the people she’s spent her life hating.”


Overall Rating and Review Blurb

3 Tree Star Rating
“Sky in the Deep” earned 3 Tree Stars from me.
I was disappointed by the ending and unfortunately, the journey just couldn’t make up for it.

Book Review for “Sky in the Deep”

Readability: 3 out of 5 Tree Stars

“Sky in the Deep” had a very strong, action-driven start. I enjoy a book that doesn’t ease you into the plot, but rather throws you into the fray before starting to build the world and characters who live in it. It had a fast-paced beginning and while you might not understand the motivations of the characters at first, I can say I was intrigued immediately.

“There was only a beginning. And its light hid everything else.”

“Sky in the Deep”, Adrienne Young

About midway through this book, I put it down for a while, read a bunch of books in between, and came back to it. Even though I was more than halfway through “Sky in the Deep”, I had no idea how the story would end. I didn’t feel like I could anticipate anything about the climax of the book and that was disappointing. It made me lose a little of my motivation to finish.

Plot: 3 out of 5 Tree Stars

The plot flowed well but most of the events of “Sky in the Deep” happened exactly how I would have expected them to. There wasn’t much that surprised me, although this book did evoke a lot of emotion. I’ll get more into that later.

The biggest mystery and surprise was where the story was going. About 30 pages away from the end, I felt like there wasn’t enough book left to give me the ending that I thought this book deserved. Unfortunately, I was right. I felt like a better ending could have made this book more memorable.

Characters: 4 out of 5 Tree Stars

One thing this book got right was Eelyn and her emotions. I felt really connected to her grief and her anger at the beginning of this book. I understood it and she learned to let it go over time and I thought her feelings were written beautifully. 

“But with Iri, it had never been that way. I still felt him. Maybe I always would.”

“Sky in the Deep”, Adrienne Young

Eelyn, however, was the peak of character development. I just wish the author had given her more. Truthfully, the romance felt inauthentic and I thought her love interest was a bit boring. He frustrated me throughout the entire book and I felt like he was fairly one dimensional. Eelyn deserved better, but I understand how the two of them could be emotionally compatible.

Wow Factor: 2 out of 5 Tree Stars

This book made me so mad. I felt like it had a lot of potential at the beginning; the plot was solid and the characters, at first, were interesting. By the end, I was so disappointed! I felt like there were a lot of things that could have gone differently. By the end of it, it seemed like Adrienne Young just wanted a way to wrap up the book quickly. I hate to say it but not much of this book stood out as different to me.

Final Thoughts: The End

I wanted so badly to love this book. And I liked parts of it. A lot. I was really frustrated at the end and I almost let that get the best of me when I gave my rating. My final decision was based on disappointment. I felt let down. 

While I was hoping for a better ending, the story was written really well otherwise. Instead, I was left with the unfulfilled potential of a book that could have been great. 

I can’t say I wouldn’t recommend this book to anyone. But I also can’t say that I’d read it again, or that I’ll read the companion/sequel. I don’t think this was a bad novel, I just expected something more from the story. 

I wanted to mention one last thing but it does contain some minor spoilers of the ending so please stop here if you still want to be in the dark. If you’d like to read on, just highlight the text below.

An ending can ruin a story. I don’t like books that have one-hundred percent happy endings. It’s a cop-out because that’s not how life works; I like feeling the sting of emotions in the books that I read. Sometimes, neat happy endings can rob you of the deeper emotion that comes along with the compromises that people make in order to be happy. 

This book upset me in the sense that everything was wrapped up with a neat little bow. There were no unkempt folds, no torn paper, no sense of the hardship that the characters had been through to achieve the ending they did. Frankly, I thought these characters deserved a little more.

To see what books I’m reading next, check out my goodreads!
To read my other reviews, you can check out my review list here.
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