February 8, 2013

Level 2 by Lenore Appelhans

Level 2 (The Memory Chronicles, #1)
Title: Level 2
Author: Lenore Appelhans
Series: The Memory Chronicles, #1
Source: Traded for
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Publication Date: January 15, 2013
Goodreads||The Book Depository
Three levels. Two loves. One choice. Debut novelist, Lenore Appelhans has written a thrilling otherworldly young adult novel about a place that exists between our world (Level 1) and what comes after life (Level 2).

'I pause to look around the hive - all the podlike chambers are lit up as the drones shoot up on memories ... I've wanted to get out of here before, but now the tight quarters start to choke me. There has to be more to death than this.'

Felicia Ward is dead. Trapped in a stark white afterlife limbo, she spends endless days replaying memories, of her family, friends, boyfriend ... and of the guy who broke her heart. The guy who has just broken into Level 2 to find her.

Felicia learns that a rebellion is brewing, and it seems she is the key. Suspended between heaven and earth, she must make a choice. Between two worlds, two lives and two loves.

I kind of feel like I skimmed most of Level 2, because as unique as the concept was, it honestly wasn't very well executed. I loved the idea of a dystopian world after death, where you could relive your memories forever and ever, but it lacked the imagination and prose that I was expecting. The only thing that I did like about this book was the premise. And it failed me.

The memories just weren't vivid enough when Felicia is reliving them, and I honestly didn't care for Felicia in general, even without her memory flashbacks in the hive. She just didn't jump out at me as a character, because she seemed so...shallow. I don't mean to put her down or anything, but...ugh. There's this big huge dramatic mystery just surrounding her, and so many bad things have happened to her...and I just didn't find her believable as a character. Plus her taste in love interests sucks!

I really disliked both of the boys in the quasi-love triangle. Which is really weird for me, because in the case of a love triangle, I usually like to pick a side. (For those of you wondering, the guy I pick always loses.) Anywho, as I was saying, I like to pick a favorite boy. But I can't choose someone that I don't like, so no one wins.

Neil was simply way too goody-two-shoes. To the point that I started to wonder if the boy ever had any fun at all, and we only see him through Felicia's memories. But he was way to clean cut. In a "never-does-anything-wrong-and-is-perfect" kind of way. Which just doesn't work for me, because everyone has flaws. Except Neil.

On another note, where Neil is way too good, Julian is way too bad. He's a total creep, and I can't reevaluate my opinion of him, because he basically lies and cheats his cold and calculating way to the top, so that he can get what he wants. And I just get a really bad book boy vibe from him, so I'm not a fan, because...*siren noise* CREEPER!

Now that I'm mostly done ranting about love interests, I can move on to...less green pastures, I guess. I didn't think that the plot had any real direction. Picture this: I'm trying to explain this book to my sister, so I'm telling her what I've gotten from it. After a long rambling speech about the book, she and I both realize that I've said almost nothing to give her a clue about the book, but I was telling her the entire plot. This is not a good sign, people. It is a very bad sign. It means that I didn't understand where I got from one point to the other sometimes. It means that I spent countless minutes examining plot holes...like how can they remember stuff that happens after their deaths? It seems really...I don't know, strange? Considering that they're stuck watching their memories for eternity, it doesn't seem like they would retain memories that happened while they were watching memories. And how did they learn how  to watch their memories with the hives? Do you see where I'm going with this?

If you don't, it's alright. I'm done now, because I hate tearing books apart. All in all, Level 2 just wasn't for me, for the reasons outlined above. But I'd love to hear your opinion!
Because maybe I'm not dead. Maybe I'm dreaming all of this. Maybe I am living my nightmares. ~ Pg. 151, ARC


  1. Great review! I have to agree with you on the "only liked the idea" part. I thought the idea and setting was awesome, but the story line was just SOOO slow and boring. I skimmed most of it as well and only barely stopped myself from throwing it across the room. But, oh well - good review, and I liked the points you made about the romance as well.

    ~Emily@Emily's Crammed Bookshelf

    1. Thanks, girly! (: I love knowing that I'm not the only one with an unpopular opinion, LOL! All I've been hearing about is how awesome this book is...sigh. It was BORING! Eh, I didn't feel the need to throw it at all, but I'm not a book thrower. ;) Aww, thank you! (:

  2. Ugh, I'm so glad I read your review. Depending on the book, I can go either way for a love triangle. But a love triangle where BOTH guys are not worthy to be in? Double ugh. I also hate creepy guys, so...yeah. Amaza-zing review :)

    Sunny @ Blue Sky Bookshelf

    1. Well thank you! ;) I know what you mean-- sometimes I like a love triangle, sometimes I don't...sometimes I want one guy, sometimes the other, right? He was TOTALLY creepy. Very. Ugh. Aww, thank you Sunny! (:

  3. 2 stars? Was it that bad? ><
    I had high expectations from this book but now I'm now even sure I will read it...
    Great review!!

    Sapir @ Diary of a Wimpy Teen Girl

    1. Unfortunately, I thought so. :(

      I had okay expectations, but I wasn't built up very high for it-- which I'm super glad about. Because it could have gone extremely badly on my end. o_O

      Thanks sweetie! (:

  4. Aw, sorry that it wasn't for you. The concept does sound great, but you have to be able to pull it off.
    Happy reading,
    Brandi @ Blkosiner’s Book Blog

    1. I'm sorry that it wasn't for me too. I totally feel the same way! You have to be able to pull off a concept; otherwise it just falls flat. :(

      I hope so!! (: