The Dazzling Heights is the second book in Katherine McGee’s Thousandth Floor series. Therefore, in this review, there will be spoilers for the Thousandth Floor.
Following The Thousandth Floor’s steps, the book starts with a death scene and promises you that a character, probably one that you will grow to care for, will be dead by the end of this book. It follows a similar casts of characters (besides the one that died in the last book) and adds Calliope, a mysterious character with the background of a criminal.
In a far away future, a couple of kids are just trying to keep their secrets hidden, even though those secrets includes murder, an illegal supercomputer, romance with your sibling, and past criminal activities.
After the horrible events of the last book that the characters must recover from, it still provides fresh twists and turns, the forming of new relationships, and further world-building.
Never before has a book made me root for—and maybe even like—a character that I totally despised in the last book. Leda from the last book was horrible and I hated her, but I ended up rooting for her—even though she has done terrible things, which is pretty impressive writing on McGee’s part.
One of the areas where this book excels in is character development. Leda becomes a LOT more likable character. Rylin becomes a stronger character by no longer only being relevant as a love interest and actually doing fun and interesting things on her own. Watt and Leda’s relationships has some major changes—changes that are amusing to read about.
However, Avery’s character becomes slightly annoying and her relationship with Atlas is obnoxious and a little gross to read about. Calliope’s character seems like she is going to amount to something, but in the end she only slightly affects Avery’s relationship with Atlas. Her former cons are absorbing to read about, so I hope that she does more in the third book in the series, The Towering Sky.
Additionally, the book is an enthralling roller coaster ride that is a great guilty pleasure book. It’s a great book to read on the beach!