Review: The Thousand Steps by Helen Brain

Title: The Thousand Steps (Elevation #1)
Author: Helen Brain
Genre: Fantasy, Science Fiction
Source: Publisher via Edelweiss
Publisher: Catalyst Press
Publication Date: September 6th 2019

Ebba has never even seen the sun but now must reunite four sacred amulets to save the earth from destruction. On the brink of execution, 16 year old Ebba den Eeden is unexpectedly elevated from the bunker deep in Africa's Table Mountain where she has lived all her life, believing--as do all the other teenagers who toil daily to make their food and power the bunker--that the world "Above" is uninhabitable due to a nuclear holocaust. Instead, she is heiress to a massive fortune—one that everyone wants to control. While dealing with the machinations of the High Priest, his handsome son Hal, and the rules and regulations of a society and religion she doesn't understand, she must also try and save her three friends, still stuck in the bunker and facing execution any day.

I was actually really excited about this book but honestly it was one of my biggest let downs of the year so far. Quite honestly I typically DNF books that I am not enjoying, but I did want to see how this book played out so I finished it. It was also really relativity short, 240 pages, so I didn't see the harm on finishing it out. (I also had slight hopes that it would end up getting better, it didn't.)

I feel like this was basically just Edda's day to day activities. Plus, she inherits a whole island and there is virtually no information regarding it. Like, what? I also feel that there was virtually no character development on Edda's end as well as the secondary characters. I found the characters to be super bland and I didn't really care much for them or this quest they were suppose to be on. 

Just like the no character development I feel like the world building was also severely lacking. Why are they in a bunker? What made the earth barren? What was the conflict that caused it all? I am still super unclear about everything. It almost makes me want to continue on in this series, but if the next books are anything like the The Thousand Steps then I am gonna pass on it. 

I typically save one star ratings for books I DNF, but I couldn't find anything that I liked about this book. The concept had a lot of potential but that was about it. In the end this one wasn't my cup of tea. I do wish I ended up liking it a lot more then I did. 


  1. I haven't heard of this book, but I think I'll skip adding it to my TBR! I don't like it when things happen without an explanation. Inheriting an ENTIRE island deserves some detail, haha. Sorry this one didn't work for you! Especially after you stayed with it. :/

    New follower on Bloglovin', Instagram, and Twitter! Lovely blog! <3

    Lindsi @ Do You Dog-ear? 💬

    1. This book had a ton of potential so I am sad to see it fall so short in the aspect. Even like a sentence or two of why she inherited it would have went a long way and there just was no explanation.

      Ahhh thank you so much!


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