My rating: 3 of 5 stars
I started Level 2 with high hopes thanks to the awesome sounding premise. I enjoyed it, but unfortunately there were a few respects in which it fell short.
As I said, the premise was awesome. I haven’t read anything like it, and I felt like the angels and the dystopian world were blended together seamlessly. Additionally, there was a well-defined structure for Level 2 as well as clear reasons for why things are the way they are. That being said, I did feel like the way in which Felicia – and through Felicia, the reader – learns about the world was a bit too passive at times; she learns most of the essentials about the world by being told by others rather than interacting with the world and discovering it for herself.
One of the big things on which the book hinges is Felicia joining a rebellion, and this also happens to be one of the biggest areas in which Level 2 fell flat for me. When some guy Felicia knew in life shows up, she goes with him, and her motivation – using him to find her boyfriend – is clear and believable. However, she ends up joining the rebellion, and that is where my problem was because I didn’t really understand her reasons for that. To me, Felicia would’ve put up more of a fight – especially because her activities would interfere with her quest to find Neil – but instead she joined them without questioning them too much, instead accepting their explanations at face value. This struck me as strange, since she hadn’t met most of them before, and the one person she did know was someone she knew wasn’t trustworthy to begin with.
A lot of people didn’t like Felicia, and I can understand that because she does some pretty horrible things, especially to Autumn, her best friend. What redeemed Felicia in my eyes, though, was the fact that she is aware that she isn’t a very good person, and makes efforts to change that both before she dies and afterward. In this case, I feel like having an unlikeable character worked.
Level 2 was an enjoyable read, and it was quick. It just didn’t wow me like I was expecting.