A Thousand Pieces of You
Author: Claudia Gray
Series: Firebird #1
Release Date: November 4, 2014
Publisher: Harper Teen
Genre(s): YA, Science Fiction, Romance
Review Spoilers: Mild
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This book had me hooked from the moment I first read the title. A Thousand Pieces of You. It’s just one of those titles that sticks out. The fact that it dealt with science fiction and alternate universes was really just the icing on the cake. This right here was just my kind of book all around.
Plus it looks gorgeous.
I will say this, though. You have to be okay with the book being primarily a romance. I know that the general plot summary says it’s about Marguerite seeking revenge on Paul – her father’s graduate student – after he kills her father. But in reality it’s more about her relationship with Paul across universes. (With a little bit of her relationship with Theo because no YA book can exist without a love triangle.)
While I’m usually not into YA romance at all, this one drew me in. Part of it, I’m sure, is the science fiction element. Another part, though, is just Claudia Gray’s writing. She’s a great writer. I can honestly say I thoroughly enjoyed this book and I appreciated that – besides the romance – it wasn’t that predictable.
I would have liked for Marguerite and the others to have used the Firebird devices to hop into a few more parallel universes, sure, but the ones they did find themselves in were really cool. The bulk of the book focuses on a Russian setting where Marguerite’s life is vastly different than it is in her reality.
But that was okay. It was nice to settle in and explore the rules of inter-dimensional travel and the risks and consequences as she had created them.
Marguerite was a great character whose motivations and understanding of things shift and change throughout the book. She’s your usual, average teenager for the most part (just with extraordinary parents and a very different upbringing) so she reacts a lot like you might expect. I’m looking forward to seeing her grow more in subsequent books and seeing how the other characters change and develop as well.
That said, I probably would have preferred that this book stay a stand-alone. Not because I don’t want to see what else she has to offer but because the story was great and it could have easily been wrapped up nice and neat in one book.
Over all, this is a must read for fans of YA fiction. It’s especially great for those who aren’t too into hard science fiction but want more than what cookie cutter dystopian series have to offer. Marguerite isn’t a scientist either, so the story relies more heavily on the human aspects and her understanding of the work her parents did.
Anyone – who enjoys YA romance at least – can enjoy this one. I highly recommend it!