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Black Hole Sun (Hell's Cross #1)

3.55  ·  Rating Details ·  1,705 Ratings  ·  356 Reviews
Mars stinks

It’s hot. The air reeks of burning fuel; the rivers and lakes seethe with sulfur. In the shadows, evil men plot terror and beasts hunt the innocent. Out on the barren crags of the terraformed planet, there is nowhere to hide. No one to heed a call for help.

No one, except Durango.
Paperback, 368 pages
Published February 28th 2012 by Greenwillow Books (first published August 24th 2010)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Liza Gilbert
Sep 12, 2010 Liza Gilbert rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
Where is Joss Whedon, does he know about this book, and is he getting his fair share of profits, since the entire tome is constructed around the worlds and characters Whedon created in Firefly?

Although the book is set on Mars, the list of Firefly similarities is alarming -

1) Pithy, sarcastic male leader with a troubled past (Captain Malcolm Reynolds)
2) Supportive, female subordinate who is a little too> supportive and makes you question the nature of the relationship (Zoe)
3) Humanoid creature
Aaron Vincent
Jul 16, 2010 Aaron Vincent rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: scifi
Originally posted on Guy Gone Geek.

I have to admit that the Suzanne Collins blurb on the cover sold the book for me. An established young adult dystopian author pimping a new dystopian book really seals the deal. I am glad that I was lured by that bait because Black Hole Sun is one hell of a book dystopian fans shouldn’t miss.

David Macinnis Gill’s version of our dark future is on Mars. I would naturally expect that the story will take place when the society is still settling in their new home or
Aug 10, 2010 Stacy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Highly entertaining piece of sci-fi literature that will make you laugh, cringe, shout hooray and laugh some more.

Durango is the chief of a band of rouge Regulators. Together with his davos of motley crew Regulators they fight to protect a group of Martian miners from the evil, flesh eating Draeu led by an equally evil Queen.

This novel was entreatingly good (and fun) for so many reasons. For one thing, it is a sci-fi dystopian (I <3 dystopia) book. I liked the inventive world created by Gil
I must confess to finding this book rather awful. Durango was a sterotypical loner badass that we've all seen, from Han Solo to that guy with the harmonica in 'Once Upon a Time in the West'. His second in command is a beautiful girl, who is of course his love interest and, in a totally new idea, love between them is forbidden. Well give the author a prize-how'd he come up with that idea? Not only is it forbidden, but like most young people, these two blow the rules out the window and go for it a ...more
Feb 10, 2011 A.E. rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Jake did his review in song!

Yo, yo, yiggity, yo! This is mix master Jake "Jakey-Jake" Kirk and I'm going to do this review as illustrated by a series of graphical rhymes starting...NOW!

My Lyrically Advanced Review
(As Inspired by Ian Stupidhalder)

So our story starts out with with a boy named Durango.
He's 8 years old Mars Time(17 in Earth though).

He's a disgraced soldier just trying to get by,
And with the help of his friends Vienne and Mimi, he's doing just fine.

Until someone makes him an offer
Not my thing. And I say that through gritted teeth. So gritted, in fact, that there's a sand dune forming at my feet as I stand before a Shakespearean fireplace, red wine in hand, gazing into the flames that flicker and shine in my dark, despondent eyes.

I like the title. There you go, David. You did a really good job coming up with a title.
May 31, 2015 Andis/Slytherin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really enjoyed this book, more than I thought I would.
4 solid stars <3
Strong, traditional science fiction with a militaristic aspect. This should appeal to fans of Starship Troopers or Ender's Game, although in this case the rigid training is tempered with humanity. Set on Mars, there's a whole lot of backstory about terraforming and a plague on Earth and how this society came to be, where power rests in the hands of the CEOs of various family-held coporations. Mars' complicated past is shared in snippets throughout the ongoing efforts of Durango and his first, Vi ...more
Feb 23, 2012 Roxy rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Good GOD that book was awful. So many inconsistencies, such horrible dialogue, flat and awkward characters, a writing style that made me want to tear my hair out, and so much more.

Ugh. I'm going to go bleach my brain now.
Jul 15, 2010 Carrie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: YA & Adults
I won this signed ARC on first-reads.

When I started BLACK HOLE SUN, by David Macinnis Gill, I began taking notes, (as I do with all books that I win), but as I got into the story, I couldn’t stop to write because I was so hooked into the tale.

Mars is now our earth but nothing like the once lush planet that was abandoned. It is a dark and dirty place and the people that live there are very much the same, rough and savage like.

Because of his father’s past, Durango is an outcast. He is a regulator
Apr 05, 2011 Sesana rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
Well, it's a fast read, and there's some good action. But it's very derivative of Firefly, and not in a terribly creative way. Gill seems to have put a great deal of thought into his worldbuilding, but he has a hard time conveying it to the reader. He's gone for the minimal exposition route, which left me vaguely puzzled over things that ultimately didn't matter all that much. I expect that, if I kept reading the series, I'd eventually get a fuller idea of what this society looks like, but that ...more
Feb 14, 2011 David rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This genre isn't known for being great literature but Black Hole Sun ... wait. I don't remember Black Holes or the Sun being particularly important to ... Androids Dreaming of Electric Sheep. Okay fine. Titles aren't important to the genre. Review to follow after meeting I suppose.
Apr 09, 2010 Cindy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
wow. what a crazy ride gill takes us
on with Black Hole Sun. the action is
adrenalin-rush non-stop, the dialogue
is laugh out loud funny, and durango
is one hot yet sensitive hero. i hope
there's a sequel!! would love to continue
on with durango's adventures on mars!
Aug 18, 2010 Erika rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am reviewing an Advance Copy provided by the publisher.

When a plague ruined Earth, it was up to the United Corporation of America to reestablish the population elsewhere. Naturally, as the next closest planet, Mars would have to do. But after the terraforming was finished, the miners originally sent to create a viable atmosphere weren’t rewarded for their efforts. Trapped inside of their mines, the workers were helpless to stop the calculated invasion of chigoes released by the government—nati
Mitchel Broussard
One hell of an adventure story. It's one of the most successful books I've ever read at combining really REALLY well-written action scenes, brilliantly realized characters, and more than your normal violence and body-count than your normal young adult outing.

It's set about 150 years in the future where Earth practically killed itself off with pollutants and whatnot *gasp*. But the twist here is that mankind set sights on Mars, and with the very pollutants that killed Earth, they created a breath
Aug 31, 2011 2sergioc rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The main character is Durango he is a regulator which seems to be a mix of a policeman and mercenary.Durango has a computer like device on his brain that has a wise cracking personality and seems to be a female named Mimi.Mimi constantly mocks and insults Durango in a child like manner. Durango seems to be the leader and one of his favorite workers named Vienne.According to Durango she is perfect in her aim,machine like action, and ability to follow orders.

Durango and his davos (team or crew) a
Cheri Williams

I was in such a state of euphoria after reading BLACK HOLE SUN I forgot to add it to Goodreads when I read it earlier this year--making up for it now!

The action, the pacing, the characters (Oh, Durango--there'll never be another like you) the world, the concept... the whole enchilada (not to be confused with the author's other book SOUL ENCHILADA) I loved it all!

Honestly, it's one big bundle of literary awesome! I don't think I took a full breath till I finished. In fact, don'
Mar 29, 2013 Ron rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Gill drops us right into the story--and his improbable characters--with a ten kilometer free fall over Mars and the pace (and improbability) never slackens. The back story--and a third of the story is back story--is rationed to the reader meagerly, which is good. A data dump at the beginning would have been a complete turn off.

The characters are more caricatures, except for the bad guys. The mutants and their queen are as mysterious as they are evil. Only in the last pages does Gill fill us in.
Feb 13, 2011 Hirondelle rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult, sf
Catastrophically badly written. A recommendation from an author I love, and I feel like a total sucker I bought this and in hardcover, because the style and writing is of very different tones (and IMO quality levels!).

The dialogue is unbelievably annoyingly snappily unlikely. Leading to abuse adverbs, but its all applicable. Character depth, pfh, what is that.
Jan 08, 2014 Sarah rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I liked this one more than I thought I would. It actually reminded me a lot of firefly, which was neat. The main character, Durango, was funny and not at all as annoying as I initially thought. Also, his female sidekick was awesome! Not a damsel at all, which is always appreciated. Overall,a very fun, surprisingly enjoyable read.
Leah Clifford
Sep 17, 2010 Leah Clifford rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Normally sci-fi isn't my thing at all. In fact, I was actually pretty leery, but this one blew me away! Very highly recommended!
First Look: I honestly have no clue why I picked this up.  It's never been on my to-read list and the blurb tells me absolutely nothing about the plot.  And the cover...awkward text placement, anyone?  Okay, so maybe I thought that guy was Liam Hemsworth at first.  I have no idea why I thought this, but...okay.

My main thoughts on the setting basically sum up my entire reaction to this book: what is going on here?  It was set on Mars.  That's the only thing I could pin down for sure.  Ev
Kristin  (MyBookishWays Reviews)
You may also read my review here:

Black Hole Sun starts off with a bang (lots of them) when Durango and his crew of one, Vienne, save the children of a very rich, very influential (and as it turns out, very nasty) woman. There’s much more to this ransom “rescue” than meets the eye, though, but that comes later. Black Hole Sun takes place on a far future Mars, after Earth has been ravaged by plague, and Durango and Vienne are Regulators (sort of like our po
Sep 12, 2011 Joey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
David Macinnis Gill
Black Hole Sun
New York: HarperCollins Publishers, 2010
340 p.p. $16.99

With Earth now trashed and unlivable, Mars is humanity’s new home. David Macinnis Gill’s Black Hole Sun, a new favorite of Suzanne Collins (author of the best-selling Hunger Games trilogy), takes the reader to this futuristic Martian land in this gripping thriller. Durango, (the protagonist) though one of the few survivors of his original regulator crime-fighting crew and currently a mercenar
May 12, 2013 Kelly rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Kelly Garwood

Gill, D. M. (2010). Black hole sun. New York, NY: HarperCollins Children’s Books.

Genre: Sci-Fi

Award(s): Booklist starred, School Library Journal starred, Voice of Youth Advocates (VOYA) starred

Format: book

Selection process: Nilsen, A. P. (Ed.). (2013). Literature for today’s young adults. (p. 172). Boston, MA: Pearson.


Durango is a 16 year-old Regulator whose disgraced father marks him as a dalit or outcast. He struggles to find jobs that pay much and he just tries to keep hi
Cyndy Aleo
I had high hopes for David Macinnis Gill's Black Hole Sun . It was a combination dystopian/sci-fi; it was young-adult; and it came highly recommended with a five-star rating by a friend whose opinion I trust. Unfortunately, it fell far short of the mark.

The premise of the book starts off fairly well: mercenary Durango and his team of rag-tag misfits accept a mission for far below their usual pay to defend a mining outpost on Mars from a band of cannibals who demand children of the miners. Of co
Mar 29, 2013 Droewyn rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
This was a Free Fridays book.

I was starting to think that the title was a fluke. Like it was a "Bimbos of the Death Sun" thing where a publisher took a serious novel and saddled it with a completely inappropriate title out of a weird misplaced idea that it would drive sales.

I mean, it wasn't a great novel. Halfway decent space opera with a cast of cardboard cutouts but some interesting if unoriginal worldbuilding. And as some other reviewers noted, it's basically "Seven Samurai" on Mars. But it
Dec 06, 2011 Robyn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Black Hole Sun reads like a movie, so I will not be surprised if I find out the rights to produce have been bought. There are a lot of things to like about this book. Tons of action paired with comical dialogue, little tidbits of science, and yes, even some of the characters. I thought for sure Durango was going to be the typical 'chief' self-obsessed and absorbed, or the opposite and perfect down to his machismo shoelaces. (I don't think the symbiarmor had shoelaces though.) But he wasn't. In f ...more
Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
The book moved along at a good pace with a lot of action (gun fire, explosions, cannibals, snowmobile chases). The characterization is weak, but perhaps the book is meant to appeal more to a crowd that prefers the aforementioned action to knowing much about the backstories of the characters. Despite that, I did rather like the chief and his davos, even though I knew little about them. The action scenes are well-drawn, allowing me to draw a decent picture of the scene in my head, which some books ...more
Rachel Witt
May 29, 2015 Rachel Witt rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This one gets a 4 star, even though I think it should probably be a 3.5. The background of the story is decent, what with the capitalist martian colony and the privatized army/assassins/police/ninja warriors know as Regulators. That was kind of cool. So even though it's a bit overdone, I give it points for the world building.

I have mixed feelings for the rest of the story. The majority of the books is built up of fight scene after fight scene filled with sarcastic quips and comments. Not really
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David Macinnis Gill is the author of the award-winning novels Black Hole Sun and Soul Enchilada, both from Greenwillow/Harper Collins. His short stories have appeared in several magazines, including The Crescent Review and Writer’s Forum. His critical biography of young adult author Graham Salisbury, Graham Salisbury: Island Boy, was published by Scarecrow Press. He holds a bachelor’s degree in En ...more
More about David Macinnis Gill...

Other Books in the Series

Hell's Cross (3 books)
  • Invisible Sun (Hell's Cross, #2)
  • Shadow on the Sun (Hell's Cross, #3)

Share This Book

“My old chief taught me three lessons: Never believe anything you hear and only half of what you see. Never go into debt because you will never get out. And never pat yourself on the back because karma will bite you in the ass.

Karma, I think, meet ass.”
“It is the thinnest lines that define us.” 9 likes
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