Book Review: A Thousand Pieces Of You

A Thousand Pieces of You Claudia Gray3star

Title: A Thousand Pieces Of You

Author: Claudia Gray

Rating: 3.5/5 stars

Series? Yes, 1 of 3.

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I love the premise of this book, it had so much potential to be world shattering. However, I felt that the primary focus on romance really hurt the story. Nonetheless, it was still loads of fun seeing the protagonists hop between dimensions and world.

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Credit: Graphics made using FREEPIK 😀

“It’s comfort enough to know that there are infinite worlds. Infinite possibilities.

At the start of the novel, Marguerite’s life has been turned upside down.  Her father has been killed, her mother left devastated and her family broken. As her parents were renowned scientists in the field of dimensional physics, Marguerite begins a hunt across the multiverse using the Firebird device to find her father’s killer: Paul Markov.

Review-Thousand-Pieces-of-YouLIKED

1.  Parallel Worlds

“It’s comfort enough to know that there are infinite worlds. Infinite possibilities.”

I loved the idea of parallel universes, each differing by either minute changes such as the paint splatter on your favourite desk – to colossal differences such as technological advances being delayed by a century.  Through her travels, Marguerite experiences a futuristic London, an opulent Russian court, an under the sea post-apocalyptic station, and worlds that are just reflection of our current Earth.  Each world was its own character, and I love how Claudia Gray addressed the social issues that would give rise to each universe:  whether it’s global warming or a stalled Industrial revolutions.  However, this fantastic aspect of the worldbuilding was not given nearly as much attention as I would like.

2.  Souls and Destiny and Fate

“I would love you in any shape, in any world, with any past.”

So OK, I’m a freaking sap. Love that transcends dimensions gets me EVERYTIME. It’s not just romantic love, but also familial love. I like the idea of the human soul: how we are both the product of our environment (hence, each Marguerite is slightly different in character), but still essentially keeping the selfsame spirit across the different dimensions.Do we love the person because of who they are in relation to us? Or because they possess that kindred spirit we have been searching for all along? I believe in soulmate, There are questions of fate and destiny in amongst all of this theoretical physics tinkering, I just wish we got MORE.

3.  Awesome Parents

If your mother had any idea we were talking about this, she’d skin me alive. I’m not being metaphorical about that. I think she could actually, literally skin me.

For a book that is so focused on romance, it’s also really refreshing to see Marguerite caring so much for her family. Ever the cynic, I expected her father to be dropped like a hot potato once the plot got rollling, but to the story’s credit – Marguerite remains very much true to her goal of saving her family. I love her flashback to her mum and dad, I felt that theirs were quite a heart-warming story. I also LOVED that her mother got to be the awesome physicist whereas her dad was basically the assistant to feminine brilliance.

4.  Apple Parody

There’s an organisation called Triad in this universe, taking over the world one device at a time – they are EVERYWHERE in the multiverse – being all sinister-like.  I sort of loved this little social commentary aspect about Apple.  Says the girl who just dropped most of her book budget purchasing an iPhone 6s *cough*

Review-Thousand-Pieces-of-YouBOO

1. The Romance

“I have no need for a world without you in it.”

Every time I see a quote akin to the one above, my eye twitches a little. I LOVE a good ship, but unfortunately I could not be invested in the main romance. I felt that it was predictable, fuelled by idealisation and obsession rather than actual love. It also took centre stage when I would much rather be learning about the differences between all the worlds. I did like the romance between Marguerite’s parents, though.

Also, how Marguerite treated the body of her parallel selves? Have some respect for your fellow Marguerite, lady!  You are right, you should be ashamed!

2.  Uneven Pacing

The book was quite slow and direction-less for most of the plot, I understand that it was because Marguerite had no effing clue what she was doing – but I felt she was just hopping from world to world and blindly stumbling into answers? I also felt that the story ultimately had no climax as the plot twists could be seen from about a mile off.  There was no subtlety to the writing, which is a shame because descriptively it was quite beautiful.

3.  Cop-out SciFi

Now, I would NEVER expect a lesson in theoretical physics, but a lot of the technical explanations is swept under the rug in this book by sentences like:

 Long story short: the devices are REALLY hard to make.

For a daughter of acclaimed physicist, I am ashamed of Marguerite’s behalf for her poor as understanding of physics. She basically just went *handwave* dimension travel is possible!  No believability factor, I still do not have a clue as to the Firebird’s working or limitations or ANYTHING about it. If you want to write scifi, please try a little harder than this.


Overall, I am intrigued enough to check out the sequel. Just read knowing that you are getting into a romance, not a science fiction, and you should be suitably satisfied.

43 thoughts on “Book Review: A Thousand Pieces Of You

  1. Okay, I’m not gonna lie, I’m disappointed to see only 3.5 stars there – but I am a *massive* fangirl of the series, so you’ll have to forgive me, of course! I tend to agree with a few of your criticisms, probably not all of them – I thought the romance was heartbreakingly accurate, and the pacing was perfect; I didn’t have a problem with Meg (uh, Marguerite) not understanding the physics because she’s the proverbial black sheep artist.

    I do have to say that, having read Ten Thousand Skies, I encourage you to keep going with the series. There are some major plot twists and the romance opens back into a more traditional triangle. Plus a LOT of questions about destiny/fate are explained much better. Also – the Triad/Apple reference gets a MASSIVE nod, so you’ll like that. 😉

    Anyway – excellent review as always, and can I just say that Firebird has some of the best cover designs I have ever seen in my life – but your custom graphics for this post are INSANELY AWESOME! 😀

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Her flailing between Paul and Theon just put me off in a hurry haha – especially since she was all I WILL KILL HIM at first lmao. I understand that it’s because she’s had feelings for him from the beginning of the book. I did think anything less than 5 stars would disappoint thee hahaha. But I am excited to see the next book! Especially if you say the destiny question gets explored a bit more.

      Also the graphics was primarily by Freepik today . I usually try make my own but I was lazy for this one. Thank you though haha.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Okay you got me there, but hey, 4 or 4.5 I still would’ve been happy! 😛

        The Paul/Theo (not Theon, you’re thinking ASOIAF 😉 ) wasn’t handled perfectly, but I enjoyed it. The second book will completely change your opinion of Theo entirely, and I teared up like three or four times, honestly, with the second book. Takes a lot for that to happen for me!

        But thanks for giving the book a go! 😀

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      2. Ooops shows you how invested I was in that love triangle lmao. Theron, Theon, Theo, Theodore, why are all the protagonist named so similarly these days! The second book does sound brilliant though, I shall have to give it a go. Throne of Glass has taught me to never judge a series by it’s first book 😉

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      3. OOOH see that’s funny! I’m re-reading Throne of Glass for the EXACT same reason. I didn’t love it the first time around, but have been told – and you proved it – the rest of the series is amazing! (I’ll even be getting Queen of Shadows in a few weeks when I catch up with a fellow blogger).

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      4. ToG hits it’s stride for me in book 3, but that’s also the book it started alienating some earlier fans haha. I think it becomes more plot based and more conventionally ‘fantasy’ later on which is something more my comfort zone. The first book was just too directionless and filled with exclamation points lmao.

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      5. OMG YES. Okay see now I REALLY want to read further into the series. But I’m approaching my reread of ToG accepting that it’s basically a book about shipping two hot guys, and some political intrigue. I first read it expecting a solid fantasy and was disappointed.

        I still can’t shake the overlap between ToG and Red Queen. I fangirl over Red Queen the same way I fangirl over Firebird, but for the life of me, I can’t work out why RQ just *works* so much better for me than ToG. Maybe because RQ is straight up with more fantasy elements?

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      6. RQ also benefits from a more coherent and linear plot. RQ had the heroine frolicking in pretty dresses with hot guys, but there was always a clear plot and end goal. ToG ONLY had pretty dresses and hot guy, and Celaena is really passive in the book- she basically gets to make 0 decision about any major plot points: Dorian told her to enter the competition, Chaol did the killing blow, Elena told her to win etc. But she gets SO MUCH BETTER when she’s given agency! Anyway I am rambling so much lmao sorry!

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      7. Don’t apologize! I like rambling book discussions – but you have absolutely got it right there. Mare has her goal the whole time in RQ! Anyway – I’ll still keep pushing through ToG and see how CoM makes me feel!

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    1. Brett did say above that the book improves with the sequel, so maybe wait until more reviews for book 2 comes in before making up your mind 🙂

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    1. Glad to hear that you’ll try the book, Nicolette! I didn’t want to put people off it because I found it enjoyable. But I also wanted to be honest to my readers. Thank you!! 💗

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Ah thank you so much! Also my graphics was mostly courtesy of freepik this time, I highly rec their website 🙂 loads of bloggers on pw have started using them lately!!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I’ve been using them lately too but I don’t have photoshop so I’ve been using Inkscape and regardless of whether or not I had photoshop I have zero classes or skills with it so my learning curve is massive! I’ve been using Inkscape to remove the layers from the freepik images and import the vectors into canva because I know how to use canva best, lol! Sort of round about and inefficient but until I learn Inkscape better that’s where I’m at! 😊

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  2. “Love that transcends dimensions gets me EVERYTIME.”
    ARE YOU ME, AENTEE!? If this motif ever pops up – I’m dead. Gone. In tears. Weeping. Fetal position. And parallel worlds – hnghghgnghghghhH!!!

    OKAY I HAVE ERAD ENOUGH, I’m convinced to read this book, despite your forewarnings about the sci-fi and romance.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. DOESN’T IT JUST? I feel that you might be even more put off than I am by the romance since you are a thinking woman hahaha but I hope I am proven wrong and you love it!

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  3. I’m reading this right now and I’m struggling so much with it. I don’t really like Theo and Meg isn’t the most likable person in the world either. I’m really hoping this turns around sometime soon because I LOVE time/interdimensional travel soo much. And I want to buy the next book because the covers are gorgeous. If I don’t like the first book, buying the second book would be kind of pointless…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know, I really want to adore these books as well as they covers are flat out amazing haha! Brett tells me above that book two is a huge improvement, so fingers crossed for us! Also, the plot does get better even within book 1 so I hope you end up liking it!

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  4. I have been wanting to read this book for a while now. But I tend to stay away from physic type books for the sheer fact that I hate physics with a passion. But I will definitely be giving this one a good read. If only just for the cover and the pretty graphics you created to perfectly match it 😛

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Rest assured, then, Jesse, as there’s pretty much no physics in this. It’s all just ‘oh some complicated stuff happened and now I have a necklace that lets me traverse worlds :D’ so it might be worth checking out!

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  5. Okay, I’m not a fan of romance-focused novels, but damn that concept! If you want a love story that tracends time, I would recommend Midwinterblood by Marcus Sedgwick. I really liked it. 🙂 Bo hiss for the poor sic-fi aspect. I wouldn’t expect to learn anything from the book, but if it’s sci-fi, it has to have at least some little explanations!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yesss! I saw your review of Midwinterblood sometimes last month? and it looks AWESOME. I might check out The Game of Love and Death as well because Cait mentioned on her blog she loved it. I am so after these concepts haha.

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  6. I really REALLY loved this book when I read it last year (doesn’t hurt that it’s easy on the eyes). But yeah, I really want more science in YA full stop, because I don’t understand it and books seem to help with that occasionally 😛 The sequel is sitting patiently on my TBR so I can’t wait to get to it!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m glad you enjoyed it so much, Emily! Science is scarce everywhere because it seems to turn people off reading XD; I can’t even think of a book in YA off the top of my head where it was employed in earnest *sadface*

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  7. I agree with all of this! Like, I loved the places that they went and everything, but this could have been executed MUCH better. Like you, I am going to give the second book a chance, but I am worried about the romance stuff because I didn’t really care about any of them! I feel like there’s a pretty good chance I am just convincing myself to kind of like the book because of the pretty covers 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yess I convince myself I love things because of cover lust very regularly 😉 I hope we both enjoy the second book much more haha. Brett assures me it will get better.

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  8. Ooh, I’m not so sure about this anymore. And that cover looked so gorgeous, too 😥 Buuut, I’ll still give this a try, because overall it looks like a promising series despite the not so fabulous execution. Lovely review!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Nirvana! Maybe wait for more reviews of book 2 to come out before you make the decision to dive in? I think the concept was well-executed, just not as fleshed out as I would have liked.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. When I first read the premise, I thought it would be some sort of fast-paced and action packed revenge story through parallel worlds, but I so didn’t get that with the book. After I got over the disappointment of that, I actually still enjoyed it. I agree on most points you wrote! 🙂

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  10. The whole idea and exploration of parallel words is so up my alley, and I’d love to explore more books that delve into the workings and magicality and the wonder, the possibility of it, only I’ve heard mostly not so great things about this. Especially the kinda insta-romance and then the sex scene in a different body, which is really not something I (or any other reviewer I’ve read) am happy with. So all round sounds like I’d be in the same boat as you.
    I do like fate and destiny and soulmates, in romance, but at the same time- the world will end without you, I will end without you, those things really annoy me, much more than I am willing to put up with. And a sci-fi cop-out! NOOOOO.
    Awsome review, but I’m sorry this was not a good read for you. xx

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  11. And as usual, your reviews blow me away! Not to mention your lovely graphics!
    This book definitely sounds like a good read! Having a main character who is the daughter of a physicist and not even giving some of that physicist knowledge into the story? Such a shame!
    xoxo 💋

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  12. Oh noes. You didn’t love *sniffles* lieutenant Markov? Even I wanted to jump into the book at that point. I really loved this one, but it had a little too much going on so the world building, storyline, even character development wasn’t as strong as it probably could or should have been. Completely agree. I’m just starting book two and have high hopes for this series. ADORE that graphic Aentee! Brilliant review my lovely ❤

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