I’m a sucker for a good cover, it’s true. So, when I saw the cover reveal for the second in LeighAnn Kopan’s One Universe series: Two, I just had to race on over to Goodreads and check out what this series was all about. From there on, I was pretty much sold, and even more so when One went on special offer.
Needless to say, I nabbed it up, and finally got around to reading it just last week.
So, the big question now is: does the inside match the outside for awesome?
Well, yes … and no.
You see, I have some slightly mixed feelings on One. Because there were some things I really liked about it, and others not so much.
Let’s take a look at the good stuff.
Merrin. I REALLY liked Merrin as an MC. I found her believable. Relatable. Likeable. And a good lead.
Elias. Another great main player. He’s cute and persistent, and I really liked his gentle approach of trying to persuade Merrin to give him the time of day (even if his intentions aren’t exactly cut and dry). I like how he’s geeky hot, veering away from the stereotypical muscled ToughGuy-come-AttitudeKing. And I … well, I just basically liked him very much.
Their friends. Elias’s friends become Merrin’s friends, and I really enjoyed watching that relationship grow, even if Merrin was a little judgemental toward them before she’d even had chance to say hello. But, in all fairness, this just adds a little credibility, because at that age, girls pretty much run a psyche analysis on every single person they see let alone meet, right?
The concept. One has a very cool concept, and for the most part the world building was pretty clear, even if some of it became fairly predictable. However, I did wonder for a while if the captured and saviour roles might have been the other way around for a little while. It was refreshing to see them portrayed the way they were.
Okay, now onto what has me questioning why I wasn’t clapping my hands in glee as I hit the last page, because in all honesty, I kind of felt a bit deflated and somewhat relieved to have reached the end. And this is confusing to me because I was okay about keep picking the book up to reach the end, and I didn’t at any point want to quit, but for some reason, I didn’t feel wowed about it all. Here are a few thoughts on what I think may have caused my lacklustre-ness.
The voice. Yes, Merrin is a 16 year old girl, and her voice needs to stay true to that. But I think there were occasions when this spilled over a little too much, which resulted in the story and narrated thoughts being overwritten, and also somewhat repetitive at some point.
The pacing. The opening of the book, possibly up until around the 40% mark, had great pacing. I flew through it no trouble. But then, for reasons I can’t quite pinpoint, the pacing seemed to slow quite drastically down. I don’t know how much of the overwritten parts issue contributed to that, or how much was to do with it taking too long to get to the good stuff. But definitely in the second half of the book, there was something slightly off with the pace—which may be what contributed to my being glad to reach the end.
The mastermind behind the evil. He was a little predictable. He was also almost stereotypical. I don’t know how much of this was intentional. After all, Ones are pretty much like superheroes to the human world, and in every superhero movie/comic out there, the baddies are often stereotypical, right? However, part of me wanted this to have broken from the mould to give me something fresh.
However, that being said, I still did enjoy One on a level that has left me curious by the ending. And that curiosity, combined with a willingness to spend more time with Elias and his totally beautiful cover, might just spur me into reading Two.