Review–Terra (Terrestrials #1) by Gretchen Powell

Terra (Terrestrials #1)
by Gretchen Powell
Summary: A broken and desolate Earth. A young girl struggling to survive. A lost boy with a powerful secret.
A discovery that will change everything.

In the distant wake of a plague that has decimated the Earth's population, humanity is split in two: The rich and powerful live in skycities that float overhead, while those who remain on the ground have gathered in settlements strewn across a dying planet. Eighteen-year-old Terra Rhodon is a terrestrial--a denizen of the barren groundworld--who makes her living as a scav. Long abandoned by her father, her caregivers gone, Terra supports herself and her younger brother, Mica, by scouring the earth for discarded scraps and metals to recycle for profit. One day, while on a routine scavenging run, she discovers something that shocks her home settlement of Genesis X-16. When the value of her discovery is revealed, Terra's world is turned upside down.
Terra suddenly finds herself asking questions no one will answer. Her search for the truth leads her to Adam--a beguiling skydweller unlike any she has ever met. But Adam has secrets and a quest of his own, and with him by her side, the world Terra thought she knew begins to unravel. Soon her discoveries unearth a terrifying conspiracy that has the potential to shatter everything--a revelation that will test the bonds of loyalty, family, and love.
The first book in debut author Gretchen Powell's anticipated Terrestrials series,
Terra catapults you through a story filled with blood-pumping action, intrigue, and surprising twists that will both wrench and warm your heart. As the hidden truths of this world unfold, new dangers that loom on the horizon are sure to leave you waiting breathlessly for the sequel.

Source: I won a signed paperback from the author in a giveaway.



I loved Terra! It was action packed and the premise was incredibly interesting. I’m always looking for new dystopian worlds to read about and I thought the world in Terra was unique. A dying planet full of acid rain with safe skycities that only the privileged live in? Awesome. My kind of story!

Terra was a great character. I loved her strength. She was tough and did everything she could to take care of herself and her teenaged brother by scavenging for metal parts for money. She was particularly brave because scavenging was a male dominated field and there was a risk of running into raiders, who would beat up the men, but weren’t nearly as kind to any females they captured. The world was bleak, but Terra’s perseverance was amazing.

“Something clicks in my brain. My heart instantly plummets to the bottom of my stomach, and I feel my face start to flush with new color."

Parts of the world were sectioned off as part of the quarantine process that began after the plague nearly wiped out the population. Terrestrials, the people living on the Earth and not in the skycities, were warned about venturing off into quarantined areas. But when Terra found herself in the sights of a particularly nasty raider, she had no choice but to escape into a quarantined area. Just when she was out of escape options, she blacked out and found herself waking up to a beautifully green world and staring up at the unmistakable blue eyes of a skydweller named Adam.

I loved Adam. He was always saving Terra and asking tons of questions about the area she lived in as part of his research program. Terra was a bit rude, having a generally bad perception of privileged skydwellers in general, but Adam was nice, it was hard to keep her guard up. I loved the banter between them. I just couldn’t help but fall in love with both Adam and Terra and root for them even though skydwellers and terrestrials didn’t really mix.

“Don't you see? We were meant to save each other.” 

So much happens and the entire dynamic of the world in Terra was complex. It wasn’t one group of people oppressing another, but a cycle. The skycities needed the people on the ground and the people on the ground needed the skycities in different ways. I really loved the world building because it added to the depth of all the characters and I could appreciate them and the way they had to live in order to survive. The dynamic between Terra and Adam was complicated, too, not just the poor girl meets rich guy dynamic I’m used to seeing. There were layers to everything in Terra.

Terra’s younger brother, Mica, caused Terra quite a bit of stress, but I loved his character, too. When it mattered the most, he was there to save the day, especially when Adam couldn’t. The three of them were a great team and I loved how Adam and Mica bonded, adding to the whole Terra/Adam relationship thing quite well.

“You want to hide,” he says. “I know. Because you feel like you’re not allowed to think the things you think. Or feel the things you feel.”
“Welcome to the human condition,” I say wryly.”

I can’t give any more of the plot away, but I can say Terra was full of oppression, a wonderfully dystopian world, a harsh dying desert setting, acid rain, action, technology, violence, corruption, amnesia, space, bribery, strength, family, love, class, struggles, and redemption. It was just.. so awesome. I seriously loved the world, the characters, the conflict, and the romance. I cannot gush enough about it. I highly recommend Terra to anyone who loves a good story with a great plot. I cannot wait to read the next book in the series!
Terra is only $4.99 for Kindle!

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