In the sequel to Abrey’s YA debut (Blue Sun, 2013), teenage Genny searches for a way out of the underwater world created by her own father.
At the end of the last installment, Genny’s scientist father did something unthinkable, plunging their home, the Isle of Man, underwater in an attempt to reunite with his late wife. Months later, the Isle remains underwater, protected by a force field generated by a magical, blue boy named Mannix. However, it’s becoming clear that life under the dome can’t last forever, as resources run dry and factions develop: the Keepers, dedicated to protecting the secrets of the Isle, seem to want the Isle to remain underwater, but the Free Atlantis movement, led by Darius from the first book, is picking up steam. Genny is now married to Ken Creer, who comes from a family of dedicated Keepers, and she’s pregnant with their first child. She’s determined to right her father’s wrong and return their home to the surface. She wants to make sure that her child grows up aboveground, where he or she will be able to see all that nature has to offer and not worry about fighting over limited resources. To that end, Genny spends more and more time in the lab looking for a solution and becomes increasingly distant from Ken, who, along with his family, seems to be hiding something. As in the first novel, the pace is suspenseful, and there are plenty of surprises as Genny struggles to figure out who’s right and what she really believes. The book offers engaging questions as she finds her beliefs repeatedly challenged and she learns more about the nature of Mannix and the culture in which she lives. However, readers may find the passage of time a bit challenging to determine; for example, the story only reveals in its second half that Genny is now 19 years old. She has more agency this time around, though, and her actions drive the story forward as they deepen its philosophical and moral questions.
An often great sequel that
maintains the energy and excitement of its predecessor.