Title: Level 2 (The Memory Chronicles #1)
Author: Lenore Appelhans
Publisher: Simon & Schuster BFYR
Release Date: January 15, 2013
Source: Borrowed from fellow blogger
Everything Felicia Ward thought she knew about the afterlife was wrong.Killed in a car accident just before she turned eighteen, Felicia left behind friends, family, and the boy she loved, Neil. Now trapped in a stark white world known as Level 2, Felicia and the other drones spend the endless days in chambers watching memories from their lives.The interminable pattern is broken when someone appears in Felicia's chamber. Julian, a dangerously charming acquaintance in life, encourages Felicia to join a brewing rebellion against the Morati, the angels in charge of Level 2. Instead of shepherding souls to the next level, the Morati have been keeping the dead in Level 2 indefinitely, upsetting the delicate balance of the afterlife. Though Felicia is reluctant to trust Julian, he promises Felicia a way out and the one thing she wants most--to be with Neil again.Felicia can't resist the chance to find Neil. She joins the rebels, but there's more to this battle than anyone--even Julian--knows. Torn between what she's lost and what's at stake for Level 2, Felicia finds herself at the center of an eternal struggle--and at risk are the souls of all mankind.
When I first heard about Lenore Appelhans' Level 2, I had an idea of what I thought it was going to be. But then I read it and it turned out to be something completely different. And though it wasn't what I thought it was going, it turned out to be something I enjoyed all the same.
Felicia knows she's dead. She spends her days watching memories from her old life, wondering what has now happened to everyone that was part of that life. But one day, that peaceful afterlife is shaken up when all of a sudden, people can't remember who they are or where they are. And that's when Julian walks back into Felicia's life. Felicia knew Julian when she was alive and he wasn't very good news then so why would now be any better. But when he tells her that he can help her see Neil again, Felicia can't really do anything other than follow him.
The story in Level 2 was definitely something different. Right away when I started reading, I really had to pay attention in order to really understand the world this story was taking place in. I had to make good use of my imagination to picture all the hives where everyone was willing and how they all fit together to make up the level of afterlife Felicia was living in. But beyond just the setting, the story also dealt with something that I haven't really read that much about--the afterlife. It definitely put things in a certain perspective. In this afterlife people are still living, though that life is somewhat reduced. But the people there have a lot of time to think about things and reflect back on different aspects of their lives, something which was really interesting to read about, especially when it came to Felicia.
Felicia was interesting to read about. She really seemed to be the only person living in Level 2 that that questioned a lot of what was going on or the way things were, especially when weird things started happening. It was also really intriguing to read about how she seemed to be the only one unaffected by certain changes. But what intrigued me the most about Felicia was her relationships with Julian and Neil. It was interesting to see it all unfold, both in the past and in the present. With Julian, it was interesting to see the differences between him as he was when Felicia was alive, and how he was in the afterlife. And he definitely puzzled me because at time he seemed like two different people, but at the same time I could never seem to quite figure him out. Neil seemed to be the complete opposite of Julian, but at the same time that's hard to tell because I only really got to see Neil in flashbacks. And that more than anything is what made it hard to get a clear read on Neil as well. But despite the fact that I had trouble getting a clear understanding of either boy, they were both clearly important and almost integral to who Felicia was…and is.
Level 2 by Lenore Appelhans was definitely an interesting read. It is really unlike a lot of what is already out there in terms of YA books. There aren't too many books that deal with the afterlife, so if you are looking for something a little different that will also make you think, then I recommend picking Level 2.