Maria V. Snyder's site
Series: Inside Out #2
Copy obtained: e-ARC from NetGalley
Publisher: Harlequin Teen (US) / Mira Ink (UK)
Release date: Feb 15th (US) March 18th (UK)
Spoiler Warning! Spoilers for book 1, Inside Out ahead.
Me? A Leader? Okay, I did prove that there's more to Inside than we knew. That a whole world exists beyond this cube we live in. And finding that led to a major rebellion - between worker scrubs like me and the snobby uppers who rule our world. Make that ruled. Because of me, we're free. I thought that meant I was off the hook, and could go off on my own again - while still touching base with Riley, of course. He's the one upper I think I can trust. But then we learned that there's outside and then there is Outside. And something from Outside wants In.Outside In picks up shortly after where Inside Out left off. Chaos seems to reign as Inside attempts to sort itself out after the discovery of all the extra space and the revolt to take control from the Travas'. But that is the least of the problems as things start to blow up. Someone seems intent on destroying Inside, and something Outside, wants in. Trouble and danger is coming from every direction and Trella is less sure than ever about who can be trusted.
I completely loved Inside Out and so I was very excited to get my hands on Outside In early after that ending. I wish I could say Outside In lived up to expectations, but it just didn't for me. I loved Trella in Inside Out, but here I found her very irritating. She took a very definite step back from the stronger girl she'd become through book one and spent a lot of time running from responsibilities and reality. I can understand some of her fears and why she was like that, but it went on too long and I got very frustrated with her.
I think my irritation with Trella and her personal issues made the plot feel like it was moving a lot slower than it actually was early on. As the action took over from the personal issues, that's when the story picked up for me. I didn't find the pacing as smooth or constant as Inside Out, because as soon as the focus was back on Trella and more personal issues, I didn't really want to know, until she started growing up again and dealing with things. Through the first half of the book it seemed like it was a constant switch, action/Trella physically hurt, then emotional angst and back again. The second half of the book was much stronger, plot wise and character wise. It was faster, smoother and a lot more intense.
The ending though let it down for me again. The last two or three chapters felt rushed, and then very neat as everything got tied up. Too neat for my tastes. Overall it's still a decent read. There is some good action and I do love Riley! He is my favourite character from both books. I love his strength and passion, and he's very smart too. I did really enjoy his interaction with Trella, even when I didn't like her, because it was intense and honest. I just found that it was lacking compared with book one. I found this very easy to walk away from and it actually took me a few days to finish it. It does have some great moments, and a reasonably satisfying conclusion, but I thought a lot more of Inside Out. Still, if you read that, you'll want to read this one, you may well get more out of it than I did if you can look past some of Trella's actions.