Release Date: October 2012
Pages: 68 pages
Series: Under the Never Sky #0.5
Source & Format: Bought; Kindle e-book
Amazon | Goodreads
Summary (from Goodreads)
After a childhood spent wandering the borderlands, Roar finally feels like he has a home with the Tides. His best friend Perry is like a brother to him, and Perry's sister, Liv, is the love of his life. But Perry and Liv's unpredictable older brother, Vale, is the Blood Lord of the Tides, and he has never looked kindly on Roar and Liv's union. Normally, Roar couldn't care less about Vale's opinion. But with food running low and conditions worsening every day, Vale's leadership is more vital - and more brutal - than ever. Desperate to protect his tribe, Vale makes a decision that will shatter the life Roar knew and change the fate of the Tides forever.
Thoughts on Roar and Liv
I fell in love with Roar in Under the Never Sky, and I was dying to learn more about him. Despite the fact that it was almost $3 for 68 pages, I decided to actually buy this e-novella. I think this is a fairly recent phenomenon in Young Adult, but I've noticed more and more e-novellas released recently. While I understand the appeal for the publisher, I haven't been convinced to buy one until now. By their very nature, they aren't "necessary" to the story. It's a series extra - something that potentially fleshes out a certain character - but isn't going to affect a reader's understanding of the story if it isn't read.
While I wanted to love Roar and Liv, I really just wanted more at the end of the day. The pages just flew by, and I was incredibly disappointed with the novella when I was done. It's not that I didn't love the characters or the writing because they were just as great as I remembered from Under the Never Sky. It was more that I had the feeling like I'd paid for something that was extraneous and did little to nothing to further the story.
Roar and Liv was actually set before the events of Under the Never Sky, so it's really more of a prequel. The book gives you a little insight into Roar and Liv's relationship leading up to Liv being promised to Sable, the leader of the Horns tribe. It ends when Liv runs away during their journey to deliver her to the tribe. It gives you all the background that happened before Roar joins Perry and Aria in Under the Never Sky.
Since Roar's search for Liv becomes even more important in Through the Ever Night, I did appreciate that I had a little more insight into their relationship. However, it was really a surface-level type look at their relationship. You don't get their full history, and it left me feeling like it was just a teaser. I so wanted to love this novella, but I didn't really think it was worth the cost. If it had been $0.99 then I'd absolutely recommend checking it out before starting Through the Ever Night. As it was, I think it's safe to pass on this novella without missing out on much.
"I'd never seen a decent example of a husband. What I've seen are men who shine like silver at first, then tarnish and eventually disappear. Is marriage something that has to be taught, or can you learn it by ear?
"You're part of me, Olivia. Anything that involves you is always about us."
"My ambitions aren't grand. All I have ever wanted is to be there for the two people who mean everything to me. Maybe that's a small goal to others, but it's always felt like enough."