*I received a copy of two books in this series from the author in exchange for an honest review.*
**I will be reviewing these two books together, as I feel they could have been edited into one.**
First Impression: Post-apocalyptic sub-aquatic living? Count me in!
Characters: I couldn't get past the character's ridiculous overuse of what I will dub 'aquatic lingo'. I'm all for trying to relate to the young adult crowd, but this felt forced. The characters didn't connect for me, even into the second book.
World Building: Having just finished twp excellent dystopian books from another series (check my page), I felt the world building in the Surface series thus far to be lacking. Besides a few interesting tech items, I didn't feel submerged. The beginning of the first installment drags on through a battle scene meant to be reminiscent of "Ender's Game", but reads more like an instruction manual for Blitzball in Final Fantaxy X for PS3.
Writing Style: I think Mr. Hebert has great potential as an author, and a great imagination. Unfortunately, over-describing every little detail can be just as bad as leaving the reader wanting more. I feel if these two first books were pared down into one it would be a much better first installment or standalone novel.
What I Enjoyed: I don't want to give the impression these are bad books, they're just not for me. If you want every detail handed to you on a silver platter this might be the series for you. Everything from character facial expressions and intonations is thoroughly described within. The premise and story elements are a great idea not fully realized.
Deal Benders: The weird lingo, over-descriptions, and slow pace made these books a miss for me. Again, I would like to see what the story would be like if combined into one novel.
Overall Rating: I give 2 stars because it was okay, but didn't strike me as something I had to keep reading. When you adore a book you can't wait to come back to it like a lover. Unfortunately, I must return to the surface and leave the Elephant's Guild behind.