I waffled between three and four stars for this book, and finally gave it four. I had a few issues with it, but they weren’t terribly major things. One, I found some of the names a little predictable. Two, I found there were odd gaps in the narrative/action, where a character would set out to do something or go somewhere and suddenly–there they were. As if a chapter or so that dealt with the transition had been summarily cut, or the audio player had skipped ahead a section. I actually checked that a couple of times. Three–violets. The smell of violets is mentioned *far too many times.* Where, oh where, was the editor on this?
However, despite these troubles, I did enjoy the book and it kept me reading (listening). The world is not overly developed, but enough so that I can fill in the blanks, and I liked how the split societies had followed their different paths. I do hope that somewhere along the line we will find out exactly what the aether is, but for now I can go along with not knowing because the *characters* don’t know. Their romance is predictable but faces some nice obstacles. And really, you can’t help liking them, which is what you want in a YA dystopia–likeable characters who make you interested in their story. Good supporting characters, too, and a lot more going on most of the time besides the romantic element. I do expect to keep reading the series, at least for another book. If a few of the bumps are smoothed over as the story progresses, I’ll enjoy it even more.