Narrator: Tavia Gilbert
Published by HarperCollins
Published on 3 November 2015
Genres: Science Fiction, Young Adult
Source: my local library
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Ten thousand worlds. Ten thousand enemies. One love.
Marguerite Caine has done the impossible, traveling to alternate dimensions with the Firebird—the brilliant invention of her parents, her boyfriend, Paul, and their friend Theo. But she has also caught the attention of enemies willing to kidnap, blackmail, and even kill to use the Firebird for themselves.
When Paul's soul is splintered into four pieces—pieces that are trapped within Pauls in other dimensions—Marguerite will do anything, and travel anywhere, to save him. But the price of his safe return is steep. If she doesn't sabotage her parents in multiple universes, Paul will be lost forever.
Unwilling to sacrifice her family, Marguerite enlists the brilliant Theo to help. The two forge a plan to save Paul and the Firebird, but succeeding means outsmarting a genius and risking not only their lives but also the lives of their counterparts in every other dimension.
Their mission takes them to the most dangerous universes yet: a war-torn San Francisco, the criminal underworld of New York City, and a glittering Paris where another Marguerite hides a shocking secret. Each leap brings Marguerite closer to saving Paul—but her journey reveals dark truths that lead her to doubt the one constant she's found between the worlds: their love for each other.
This whole series is proof that I just really don’t care about covers.
I’m really sorry, because they are legitimately gorgeous covers, but I didn’t even realise the first book, A Thousand Pieces of You, had two cities represented on it! I just didn’t look that closely because covers are not as important to me as the story inside. Sounds sappy but it’s true!
I did it again with this book. The first time I looked closely at the cover was when I was writing this review, and realised again it’s two different cities represented in the cover art. Oops!
As for the content of this book, well quite honestly it was brilliant!
Marguerite’s character journey was just wonderful to watch. She went from a naive, romantic child to a wiser young woman, now aware that maybe love doesn’t conquer all. In this novel, Paul has been splintered, and Marguerite and Theo have to travel to several different dimensions to piece his soul back together and get a cure for Theo, who is suffering from a travel-related illness. During this task, Marguerite is able to see different versions of Paul, some of whom she struggles to reconcile with the Paul she loves. After all, if she loves one Paul, shouldn’t she love them all?
I loved discovering the ways Paul and Theo were intertwined with Marguerite’s family. I found it really interesting to see different aspects of Paul’s character. I thought it was a refreshing twist on Paul sharing his background, childhood memories, fears and dreams with Marguerite: instead, she was experiencing them first hand. I feel that the dimension jumping is also a really cool twist on travelling to different time periods. We get to experience 16th century Russia, the Great War, living underneath the ocean, a futuristic London. The details that Gray sprinkles through these novels makes each one completely plausible.
There were some twists I didn’t see coming, but others some I did see well before they were revealed. I found the bad guy’s motivation really honest, although absolutely terrible and ruthless. Marguerite is right to fear the bad guys, because they are honestly really scary.
I’ve said before that I find Claudia Gray a really solid writer. Her plotting, characterisation, and technique are all magnificent, and her imagination appears boundless. Her romance is so swoony! There were also some completely hilarious moments in this book, when Marguerite leaped into a new dimension and found her other self doing things she thought she’d never do.
I also thin the audio narrator, Tavia GIlbert, is completely extraordinary! One of the absolute best narrators I’ve listened to in YA audiobooks. She changes voices for every character, her accents are spot-on, and she gets every inch of emotion into her reading. I kind of low-key love it when Marguerite gets upset because Tavia really makes you hear it and feel it, and it’s so easy to get absorbed into these audiobooks. It’s just such an enjoyable experience.
I’m so into this series that I borrowed the last book in the trilogy from my library before I even finished this book, knowing that I would want to dive into it right away!