Series: Firebird #1
Published by Harper Teen on November 4, 2014
Genres: Romance, Science fiction, Young Adult
Length: 9 hours, 18 minutes
Narrator: Tavia Gilbert
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*This book was provided by the Publisher for review. No compensation was provided and all opinions are strictly my own.
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.
Based on the book description I thought A Thousand Pieces of You would be more of sci-fi thriller but it was essentially a romance. If you’re in the mood for traveling thru a few alternate worlds all from the perspective of a teenage girl who might have the hots for two guys then this may be right up your alley.
The who’s who and what’s what
– Marguerite (aka Meg) is the daughter of two prestigious scientists who have invented a device called the Firebird that allows the wearer to cross into alternate realities as long as they also exist in that reality. When they go into that other world they occupy and can take over the body of their alternate self. Hers is the only perspective we get from in this novel. I think she’s maybe 17, she is supposedly very intelligent but her more dominating characteristic is being very hot headed emotionally. She is an artist and other than that her art and hot headed-ness are to main defining characteristics.
– Paul, 19 and one of her father’s research assistants. He is a big hulking guy but very quiet, sweet and introverted. He is a genius that, if I remember right, started attending college at age 13 and comes from a troubled family / past so Marguerite’s family has pretty much taken him in as one of their own. Supposedly he killed her father and has stolen the Firebird and jumped their reality into another one. She and Theo set off on a revenge hunt after him that spans several worlds.
– Theo, 20, the bad boy / playboy flirtatious type. He’s another genius young research assistant that was also essentially adopted into her family from years of working so closely with her parents. He wants to go chasing after Paul and get revenge for the murder of Meg’s father. For being so smart he seems to make brash decisions and has a substance abuse problems. He at one time considered Paul to be like a little brother to him and he and Paul both have feelings for Meg.
– We get to see four alternate realities in addition to some short time spent in her home reality. She is from California but in the first reality she lives in England, in the second she is Russian Royalty, the third is almost exactly the same as her reality except slightly more advanced and the last she is living under the sea in a science station (I assume much of humanity lives in these sea cities). None of these realities are gone into much detail on, except the Russian one, which is the reality she spends the most time in and where she has a completely different family. But Paul is there but he can’t remember that he’s jumped there from another reality because his Firebird isn’t with him. She becomes VERY close to Paul in this reality and Theo doesn’t come into play in this one because he’s stuck in another country.
– Ultimately, the focus in all of the realities is on her and the guys that were her dad’s research assistants. The one she is chasing (a love interest, Paul, whom she thinks betrayed her family but she had developed feelings for prior to all that madness) and the other guy Theo that she left with on this revenge escapade in the first place who she has also been developing feelings for at the onset of their trip into the alternate realities.
I don’t want predictability to be my reality
– I guessed almost all of the major plot points by the time I’d reached the 12% mark in my reading. This is a major sticking point for me. There are mystery novels where I expect to start guessing and where I like knowing by the end that I’ve guessed right. But then there are novels such as this that makes things so obvious that I can’t find any enjoyment in them because I don’t think they should be so easily guessed.
The Spoilers of what spoiled this read for me (don’t read if you don’t want to be spoiled!)
View Spoiler »– I knew who the bad guy was going to be…It doesn’t even matter that there was an extra bigger bad guy (who’s always the bigger badder guy? Corporations of course!). But I called the main bad guy pretty much before they even left on their trip, because Hello! If two world renowned scientists couldn’t fix two prototypes and yet their research assistant who was supposed to dispose of them, but didn’t and was just miraculously able to get then working after….yeah makes things a bit obvious don’t you think?
– I knew which guy she would ultimately fall for, heck I’m sure everyone could tell that right from the book description so I was ok with that for the most part.
– I also had a guy feeling he was going to die in at least one of these realities and of course have her see him again in another reality.
– There were a few other smaller things I guessed at as well. Obviously that there would be a love triangle because it seems like that is the most essential ingredient to a young adult novel these days. I didn’t however anticipate the sex scene, but then many mainstream YA books don’t have sex scenes yet. At least that made things a bit more realistic.
– So really the only big thing I didn’t see coming was the ultimate fate of her father, who ended up being relegated to a side plot as the romance took full center stage. See how all of this would detract from my enjoyment? « Hide Spoiler
My gripes aside I think avid YA fans may very well enjoy A Thousand Pieces of You a lot if they are after a sci-fi light, romance heavy plot that changes scenery and deals with alternate worlds / realities. I just had a hard time with it because I felt as if I already knew the story and it’s outcome by the time things had hardly gotten underway.