Level 2 by Lenore Appelhans
Published: January 22nd 2013 by Listening Library
Format/Source: Audio CD from Cover2Cover Blog
Genre: Young Adult Dystopia
In this gripping exploration of a futuristic afterlife, a teen discovers that death is just the beginning.
Since her untimely death the day before her eighteenth birthday, Felicia Ward has been trapped in Level 2, a stark white afterlife located between our world and the next. Along with her fellow drones, Felicia passes the endless hours reliving memories of her time on Earth and mourning what she’s lost—family, friends, and Neil, the boy she loved.
Then a girl in a neighboring chamber is found dead, and nobody but Felicia recalls that she existed in the first place. When Julian—a dangerously charming guy Felicia knew in life—comes to offer Felicia a way out, Felicia learns the truth: If she joins the rebellion to overthrow the Morati, the angel guardians of Level 2, she can be with Neil again.
Suspended between Heaven and Earth, Felicia finds herself at the center of an age-old struggle between good and evil. As memories from her life come back to haunt her, and as the Morati hunt her down, Felicia will discover it’s not just her own redemption at stake… but the salvation of all mankind.
As I was listening to this book, I would tell people that I was enjoying it. They’d ask, “What is it about?” And the only way I could think of answering in some amount of brevity was by saying, “It’s about a dystopian heaven.”
Is that accurate? I think so if you don’t get too technical with it.
Felicia is dead, but not really quite dead. The angels that should be taking care of those in this purgatory place are instead up to no good. There’s an awesome fusion between what you would imagine this place being: an old fashioned, vaguely religious, reminiscent of stain glass windows; and what it is: machines, drugs, tag lines, and technology.
(What trends in purgatory?)
This book could have easily fallen into a cycle of teen angst, and while it is there to make it part of the ‘young adult’ genre, it doesn’t wallow in it. The alternating story lines of her memories and the present really help with that. Each time the story swtiched, I’d be upset because I would want more of the current one; it means that you’re constantly wanting to know what happens next.
They really couldn’t have picked a more perfect narrator either. The voice sounded perfect for a young girl. And when you’re sitting in your car on a hot Virginia day to finish it, you know it is deserving of the highest rating.
My rating: 5/5