Title: Ten Thousand Skies Above You
Author: Claudia Gray
Series: Firebird, #2
Publisher: Harper Teen
Release Date: November 3rd 2015
Ten thousand worlds. Ten thousand enemies. One love.
Marguerite Caine has done the impossible, traveling to alternate dimensions with the Firebird—the brilliant invention of her parents, her boyfriend, Paul, and their friend Theo. But she has also caught the attention of enemies willing to kidnap, blackmail, and even kill to use the Firebird for themselves.
When Paul’s soul is splintered into four pieces –pieces that are trapped within Pauls in other dimensions –Marguerite will do anything, and travel anywhere, to save him. But the price of his safe return is steep. If she doesn’t sabotage her parents in multiple universes, Paul will be lost forever.
Unwilling to sacrifice her family, Marguerite enlists the brilliant Theo to help. The two forge a plan to save Paul and the Firebird, but succeeding means outsmarting a genius and risking not only their lives but also the lives of their counterparts in every other dimension.
Their mission takes them to the most dangerous universes yet: a war-torn San Francisco, the criminal underworld of New York City, and a glittering Paris where another Marguerite hides a shocking secret. Each leap brings Marguerite closer to saving Paul—but her journey reveals dark truths that lead her to doubt the one constant she’s found between worlds: their love for each other.
– Blurb courtesy of goodreads.com
This review may contain spoilers for previous book(s) in the series.
My Thoughts On…
The Firebird series literally drops you right into the middle of the plot, the middle of the action. In A Thousand Pieces of You we meet Marguerite as she’s scrawling a message onto the wall ‘kill Paul Markov’. In Ten Thousand Skies Above You we see her running from a mob in Renaissance Italy; Paul has already gone missing, already been fractured, and she is struggling already to track him down.
When Theo collapses, feeling the effects the visits Other Theo made have had on his body, there is only one place Paul and Marguerite can go to to possibly find a cure. However after 24 hours have passed and Paul hadn’t returned Marguerite starts to worry, after 48 hours she’s tracked him down with the help of her parents and followed him to a multiverse where she is in Italy in the Renaissance era fleeing from a mob accusing her of witchcraft. However at the Castel Sant’Angelo where she expects to retrieve her Paul with a reminder and take him home he still has no memory of her dimension, and Marguerite comes face to face with Wyatt Conley.
Ever since Marguerite returned from her first trip to the multiverses Conley has been trying to get her to work for him, now he seems to finally have hit on something to force her hand. He has splintered Paul’s soul into four separate pieces, and if Marguerite wants him back then she will need to travel to each dimension, collect the pieces, and reunite his soul. However in order to get the locations from Conley she needs to do something for him first; she needs to destroy the Firebird research her parents are close to finishing in two other dimensions.
Marguerite is left with no other choice, not if she wants Paul back and the cure for Theo which Conley waves in front of her. Against her parent’s wishes Marguerite, with Theo by her side once more, travels back through the multiverses to complete Conley’s mission. However none of the universes she travels to are what she expects. Marguerite is forced to make some hard choices, not only about her parents Firebird research but also about everything she believes about the destiny between her and Paul.
Marguerite can’t look past what happened in the first book with Other Theo, and she lets it blind her towards her dimensions Theo’s actions. She seems to be very set in her beliefs about the multiverses and their version of destiny but while on her journey to rescue Paul she has to face some hard facts which really shake her confidence. She has always believed that her and Paul are meant to be after everything she saw and experienced in the first book but in the second she starts to realise that may not be the case.
I still really loved Marguerite’s character. She makes mistakes on her path, and when things get tough and she is at her lowest point she runs away. She has very set ideals and notions of the world and even when they are shaken she still comes back to them. She isn’t one to be controlled by anything or anyone, and she honestly wants to do what is best not only for her world but all the multiverses out there.
Paul is not a major character in this book, however we definitely see another side to him that was left unexplored in the first book. We learn a lot more about his past and the life he could have taken if things had turned out differently for him with his parents, but even with all the surface changes at his core he is still the same man. The dimensions where his soul has been splintered are probably some of the darker ones for him; the ones where his life is dangerous, hopeless, bleak. It affected who he is and how Marguerite sees him when she travels to those dimensions.
The relationship between Marguerite and Theo has always a possibility in this series and it was expanded on a little in this book but, don’t worry, I wouldn’t say it develops into a love triangle. Marguerite has always believed that her and Paul are destined, that no matter what world no matter what situation they will always find their way to one another, always end up together. However in this book she is faced with the possibility that everything she believed is wrong. When her and Theo arrive in San Francisco, their first stop in the journey to reunite Paul’s soul, Marguerite and Theo are together, and later when Marguerite moves onto New York she is faced with another side of Paul she can’t connect with her own.
After everything Other Theo did in the first book Marguerite has had trouble seeing her Theo as she once did. She believes at their core every dimensions versions of Marguerite and Paul and Theo are the same and she cannot get past what happened between her and Other Theo. She doesn’t blame her Theo for what Other Theo did but she can’t quite see past this new side to him. In this book Marguerite starts to face the harsh reality that there are parts of hers, Paul’s and Theo’s souls which may be the same but others which are very different.
The main thing that drew me to this series was the idea of all the multiverses that were explored (that and the covers) and I was just as excited to see even more of them in the second book. Marguerite visits an Italy stuck in the Renaissance era where her parents are slowly trying to bring about scientific advancement only to have their daughter chased down as a witch, a war-torn San Francisco where Marguerite and Theo are dating and where the Firebird is their only real hope for survival, a world where Marguerite’s parents live and teach in England, and a world where she’s in New York about to meet her sister’s fiancée. However there are still things I wish had been expanded on more; mainly the science aspect behind it all. I don’t want loads of pages of information dumps, but a little background would be nice. The whole theory of splintering was such a major part of this book, for more reasons than just one, but it felt like it had been added in at the last minute, nothing more than an afterthought.
I really enjoyed this book, even more than the first. There are still a lot of questions left about the science of it all that I would really like to see explored more but I felt Marguerites character grew a lot more in Ten Thousand Skies Above You and I’m really interested to see where she goes in the final book. After the ending (that cliffhanger, oh my god!) I need the third book more than I can really say.
What did you think of Ten Thousand Skies Above You? Was it a favourite of yours or could you just not get into the story? Let me know.