By: Melanie | March 9, 2013 | (6) Comments

Title: Level 2
Author: Lenore Appelhans
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Genre: YA, dystopian, paranormal
Series: The Memory Chornicles #1
Release Date: January 15, 2013
Pages: 281 (hardcover)
How I Got the Book: Borrowed it
For More Information: Goodreads Link

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.

DNF Naturally, I don’t review DNFed books, but there is something that needs to be said here.

“Don’t! Just don’t.” How dare he? Does he think if he touches me, I’ll give in? Tell him it’s okay that he’s a monster?
He puts his hands in a gesture of surrender and rocks back into his rigid pose. “Okay, clam down. I will not touch you unless you ask.” His eyes going with mischief. “Unless you beg.”
page 69

*gags* I checked my friend reviews on this book, several were positive, ranting on about it’s stunning premise and idea. I DO agree. However, I think it was poorly written and executed. Stopping at page 178, I am rather irritated. I was looking for this entrap urging world that seemed so unique and original at the time, instead I got a piece of horse manure. Multiple times, I wanted to close the book and give up completely, well, eventually I did (which I’m grateful for) but it was infuriating, the flaws were literally glaring at me on each page.

Level 2, a stark white afterlife limbo, where people spend their endless days replaying their memories. Felicia Ward is one of those people. She is dead. Her memories is her reality, her home, where she can see her family, friends, boyfriend and the one that broke her heart —- the one that broke into Level 2 to take her away. Rebellion is brewing.

Felicia is an annoying protagonist, I couldn’t relate to her in any way, shape or form, her characteristics seemed like they were created for a background character.

The story begins on a bad pitch. Info dumping. My favourite. In fact, this issue reoccurs several times during the read and it was frustrating. I am in Melbourne, on a bloody hot day and I’m trying to read this book that is confusing me with this information that also happens to have holes in it. Not literally, but it doesn’t make any sense when I think about it now. *faints in overuse of brain power* The world Lenore crated was fascinating at a first glance, I mean, it sounds pretty darn ingenious riiight?? Sadly, it takes a large turn into lame-old-poorly-executed-stories-that-could-have-been- so-much-better in-so-many-ways. *takes a quick breath*

Another element that worried and bored me was the plot line. There was no plot line, well not until 20 pages before I DNFed this thing. The first half was monotonous, uneventful and lacks description.

All in all, Level 2 was a large disappointment that saddens me each second I think of it. While there were flaws in Lenore’s debut, her writing style and idea was well thought. Maybe more tweaking and it would be my favourite book. Recommended to people who enjoy Neal Shusterman’s books.


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Owner (and crazy nut) at YA Midnight Reads
Melanie is one of the totally fabulous bloggers at YA Midnight Reads. She's a 16 year old student from Melbourne, Australia. She is normally found binge watching TV series, reading , blogging, procrastinating or fangirling about how Percabeth is the best ship ever. She's also a lover of caps lock and uses it excessively.

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6 Responses to Level 2 By Lenore Appelhans

  1. Esmarelda says:

    I had to google DNF to see what it stood for….I would have given it a chance in H*ll.

    • Melanie says:

      Sorry, I thought DNF was a common enough acronym among bloggers and reviewers. I didn’t know what it stood for until I read a negative review on a book…I figured out by then 😀 it means did not finish to all you other lovely people. Sorry for any inconvenience or confusion!

  2. Aww, too bad about the DNF. I hate when a book looks so promising and it ends up being terrible. I probably won’t be reading this if it’s this bad!

  3. Anonymous says:

    Thanks for the heads up love! *moves book into the deep long line of TBRs.* you are really thorough when you write your reviews, really appreciate it:)

  4. Dani Way says:

    Oh! I’m sorry about your DNF! I wanted to read this book because a lot of friends recommended it to me but… I hate monotony and poor plots in books. The idea of a limbo seemed interesting though.
    I hate when you know a book could have been better, when a book disappoints you! D:

  5. Sorry that this was a DNF for you…thanks for the honest review. I still think I’m going to check this out but thanks for heads up.

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