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3.67  ·  Rating details ·  1,196 ratings  ·  297 reviews
A Sci-Fi Thrill Ride Set in the Action-Packed Sports Arena of the Future

A rising star in the weightless combat sport of zeroboxing, Carr “the Raptor” Luka dreams of winning the championship title. Recognizing his talent, the Zero Gravity Fighting Association assigns Risha, an ambitious and beautiful Martian colonist, to be his brandhelm––a personal marketing strategist.
Paperback, 360 pages
Published April 8th 2015 by Flux
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Fonda Lee Zeroboxer is a stand alone. Perhaps a companion novel will make it's way into the world someday. …moreZeroboxer is a stand alone. Perhaps a companion novel will make it's way into the world someday. (less)
Fonda Lee I'm not familiar with esports, so any similarities are purely coincidental, or more likely, jumping out at you because Zeroboxer is based on the cultu…moreI'm not familiar with esports, so any similarities are purely coincidental, or more likely, jumping out at you because Zeroboxer is based on the culture of modern combat sports and sports marketing in general. (less)
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Average rating 3.67  · 
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 ·  1,196 ratings  ·  297 reviews

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Fonda Lee
Dec 27, 2013 added it  ·  (Review from the author)
Shelves: i-wrote-this
Zeroboxer is my debut novel, so it's special to me in a "firstborn child" kind of way. It's inspired by my love for science fiction, combat sports, and smart action stories, and influenced by my years of working in the sports industry and seeing firsthand the power of celebrity and marketing. The best part of writing Zeroboxer? Getting to create, envision and write about the sport of zeroboxing! What I wouldn't give to watch one of those matches. ...more
Apr 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing

Where to even start!? First of all, it is so kick ass. Literally, because it's about zero gravity boxing.

On that note, IT'S ABOUT ZERO GRAVITY BOXING. I mean....come on.

The world of this book is amazing. The sort of intense, all-encompassing scifi that feels complete and alive but never confusing. The action (which is comprised primarily of nail-biting fights) is interspersed with smart commentary on marketing and celebrity, a
Heidi The Reader
At first, I thought that Zeroboxer was just Rocky in space, but as the story developed, I realized that it was more than that. Zeroboxer is also an examination of genetic ethics and, like most science fiction, poses some serious 'what if's. What if humanity begins to settle the universe- will they divide themselves into different races depending upon their planet of origins? What if the settlers develop their own system of government- how will humankind negotiate the potentially choppy waters of ...more
Feb 28, 2016 rated it really liked it
"You've never been to that place...That place where you know you can't win...but you can decide not to lose."

Carr Luka is a rising star in the sport of zeroboxing, which is essentially a kind of MMA where participants fight in a zero gravity cube instead of a ring. His story is a fairly simple one and we see the rise of the small time fighter as he makes it big. So what makes Zeroboxer a little different then? Because if you're like me, you don't really care at all about sports, but you do want
Jun 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: best-of-the-best
Overall Rating : A+


BOXING. IN SPACE. Who in the world would've thought that this would be a great combination? Fonda Lee that's who.

Amazing doesn't even begin to describe what I read in this book. I felt impassioned by everything that was going on. The rookie boxer trying to be the best he can be, with a heart that just won't quit. His grizzled trainer, looking after him like he was his own son. And the girl from Mars who can look after herself thank you very much, but can find a place with Car
Claude's Bookzone
Aug 17, 2020 rated it liked it
CW: Suicide off page of someone who could no longer perform

Another book with the amazing world building that I have come to expect from this author. I loved the idea of mixed martial arts in a zero gravity cube. There were a lot of detailed descriptions of zeroboxing matches and I had to work hard to visualise what was happening in the fights. The book deals with some quite topical contemporary issues but in a futuristic sci-fi environment. The most notable are: genetic modification to enhance p
Nov 10, 2014 rated it really liked it
Fonda Lee sends us on a totally new extreme fighting thrill ride with an endearing romance to boot.

Luka Carr is the up and coming hopeful for the Zeroboxer championship. His talent is unsurpassed. He is assigned a brandhelm, a personal promoter named Risha. The attraction is evident immediately between Luka and Risha and sparks soon fly.

This is a very different world they live in. Mars is colonized. Space stations offer vacation retreats (hence the zero gravity) and old earth is now called Terra
Shaun Hutchinson
Jan 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This was a wonderful book to start 2018 off with. The short description is that this is sci-fi Rocky with an added kind-of thriller storyline added in. The plot is pretty straight forward. What makes this book so damn good is that the sport of zeroboxing is fleshed out in a really believable way. The way Lee describes it makes it feel every bit as real as MMA or boxing. The world building is simply phenomenal. The characters themselves are also well done and easy to root for.

Jan 02, 2016 rated it liked it
Would you like an extremely quick breakdown of this book? I'll oblige. Zeroboxer is Rocky, in space. Oh yes, my friends. Complete with the craggy, but ultimately lovable coach, and all the related drama. That's not to say that this isn't a good book. I'm simply telling you exactly what to expect. This was most definitely a different kind of Science Fiction than I'm used to, and I'm still not quite sure how I feel about it.

First off, credit where credit is due. The sport of zeroboxing is so well
3.5 stars. Fast-paced story with believeable fight descriptions in the zeroboxing ring, as well as a credible future that includes space travel, gene modifications for health as well as cosmetic purposes, and interplanetary tensions between Earth and Mars. Carr is a young zeroboxer who is incredibly focused and determined to win a prizefight. He's given a new brandhelm, Risha, who ensure Carr's profile is raised. Carr, of course, falls for her. (I had some problems with the relationship between ...more
CW (The Quiet Pond) ✨
I don't give a damn about sport.
But, this book is all about a fictional sport called 'zeroboxing' - essentially boxing in zero-gravity. Yeah, it is definitely as cool as it sounds. And this book was definitely cool.

- An incredible, compelling, and fun science-fiction that combines futurism, sports, and intense action.
- It's about zero-gravity boxing, called 'zeroboxing'. Yeah, it's definitely as cool as it sounds.
- Set in future Earth/Terra and Mars, the book has incredible ideas and concepts a
Lee Kelly
Aug 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This is quite simply one of the best science fiction novels I've ever read.

As a reader, I was totally swept away: I found myself rooting hard for Carr, thought the rich world of the future that Lee imagines -- Mars/Earth tension, Luna, space station "vacation" colonies -- was completely immersive, and I gobbled up the thrilling zeroboxing scenes. But as a writer, I might be even more impressed if that's possible. Fonda Lee has not only built a world in ZEROBOXER, she's created a sport -- from th
I.W. Gregorio
Jan 21, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This book is, I kid you not, the most engrossing sci-fi book I have read in years. It has EVERYTHING - action, complex world building, characters that you feel completely invested in, and even a lovely element of romance.

In some ways it is just as much of a sports movie as it is a sci fi book, but I love how Lee makes the competitive conflict and makes it so, so much more.

Desperately hoping for a sequel...
Bogi Takács
This was exactly my thing. More about it in a bit. (IY"H) I am piled under Transcendent 3 stuff, but I want to review it later. Just a few notes -

Note that it is more NA-ish, with a 18yo pro athlete character who is already contemplating things like career and marriage. (This is not a problem!!) It is hard to find NA that is not entirely a romance, and this has a plot about sports and performance enhancement (and a really good one!!). So you might want to check it out if you're interested in som
Megan  (thebookishtwins)
I received this free from the publishers via NetGalley

*I really shouldn't leave it so long to write my reviews as I'm never any good at them when I leave it so long but too much work...*

Carr Luka is one of the best at the weightless sport of zeroboxing. He dreams of winning the championship and after a great fight he gets a new contract who want to make him a star. He is assigned a marketing strategist Risha, and the two soon fall in love. Carr becomes an inspiration on earth but his life is soo
Oct 01, 2019 rated it it was ok
Zeroboxer is largely a futuristic sports story with a crime/suspense element that touches on celebrity, genetic engineering, and marketing. Although I thought the sport of zeroboxing was interesting (despite not being a fan of boxing/fighting sports in general), I thought the book was an average read with its one dimensional characters and abrupt ending, plus it didn't deeply explore the aspects I found most compelling (marketing, genetic engineering, and the rift between Earth and Mars). It's n ...more
Yeah, uh, not for me.

I like fitness and for some reason I thought I would enjoy reading about sports, but overall zeroboxing (boxing in space) was just about aggressive dudes punching each other and the story had (mostly) a predictable plot.

Don't get me wrong, I love Fonda Lee and her writing? me likey. This was just a miss for me.
Sep 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2015-ya-debuts
Studies show I hate boxing even when it’s in space
Aug 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: own, 2015
I first heard about Zeroboxer from my Lightspeed book review editor Wendy Wagner last November, but I was like, I don't care about boxing. When the book came out, it got a lot of good buzz, so when I went to Sasquan, Fonda Lee was on my radar. Turns out she's a very cool person, and I bought the book and started reading it on the way home.

Fonda Lee describes Zeroboxer as "Rocky meets Gattaca" and that is actually an accurate description.

In the future the coolest sport is zeroboxing, which is box
Dark Faerie Tales
Feb 23, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviewed-by-zed
Review courtesy of Dark Faerie Tales

Quick & Dirty: Gravity-defying solar sports contests and a life altering secret.

Opening Sentence: Carr Luka woke from a nap three hours before his fight.

The Review:

I am not a fan of any kind of sport, whether it’s football, basketball or golf, and although this book is based on a sport called ‘zeroboxing’ it had me hooked. Zeroboxing isn’t any sport you’ve heard of before, it’s an inter-planet sport that is like boxing but without gravity! This story is set on
Angela Blount
May 07, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya, sci-fi
Originally reviewed for YA Books Central:

3.5 Stars

This sci-fi debut steps boldly into the YA ring and puts on a compelling show.

Set an indeterminate number of years in the future, the story is told entirely from the third-person point of view of Carr Luka, a 17-year-old "zeroboxer" of exceptional gifting. His career has just taken off, and he’s attracting a lot of attention—some good, some jealous, and some potentially dangerous.

The worldbuilding is en
Sophia (Bookwyrming Thoughts)
Jun 28, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: on-the-blog
Zeroboxer is obviously a book farrrr from my range. In fact, it's literally out of bounds. A sports-themed book is the last thing I'll ever read – I'll read contemporary romance any day over that.

But Fonda Lee's book is something different. Something completely different and out of bounds from what I usually read, and I didn't think I would actually enjoy her novel as much as I did. It's about boxing in zero gravity! On the moon! And Mars! Happy dance ensues – I'm a space nut.

Zeroboxer focuses o
An Electronic Advanced Reader Copy was provided by the publisher via NetGalley for review. Quotes have been pulled from an ARC and may be subject to change.

Carr has boxed in zero gravity since head just seven years old. He started zeroboxing professionally ever since then and now he's eighteen. Quickly gaining wins he becomes the most popular zero boxer on Terrain (Earth). He catches the eye of a brands elm who wants him to be a star and with that comes an attraction he has never known. When he
Zeroboxer is a seriously cool sports story set in a seriously cool sci-fi setting. It’s got a Rocky III meets Real Steel feel with a touch of M.T. Anderson’s Feed thrown in for good measure, but it definitely has some stuff that’s all its own, too. Carr Luka is a rising star in the sport of zeroboxing (just what it sounds like - boxing in zero gravity). When he wins match after match, it is decided that he will become the face of zeroboxing - the guy that will boost the sport’s popularity on Ear ...more
Apr 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sci-fi
Okay, if this book isn't made into a movie, I will be one unhappy camper!

World building is hugely important to sci-fi/fantasy, and Zeroboxer more than delivers on this front. Everything, from the sport and Earth/Mars political relations to a myriad of future technologies and practices, it's all here and beautifully envisioned. There's tons of detailed observations but they never bog down the action, which comes fast and furious, especially during the fight sequences. Car is also a great characte
Nov 14, 2014 marked it as to-read
Shelves: 2015
zero gravity prizefighting ...?
Rocky meets Gattaca ...?

Damn, that sounds like it might be just THE BOOK for me.
I spent a long time waiting for something to happen in this book. There's not so much a plot as a collection of the essential narrative beats of an inspirational sports film.

Carr Luka is the zero-gravity equivalent of a boxer (MMA fighter?). He's a teen prodigy, 17 years old at the start of the book (by the end of the book he was 19. Which still felt weirdly young for his personality). In Carr's world, global warming and overpopulation have wrecked Earth. Mars was settled by scientist pioneers
Feb 15, 2021 rated it it was ok
It wasn't my favorite book but it was OK. ...more
Beth Cato
Mar 05, 2016 rated it really liked it
This is a 2015 Andre Norton Award Finalist. I read it as part of the Nebula reading packet.

Lee has created a fascinating science fiction young adult novel in Zeroboxer. Carr is a teenage prodigy, a boy from Earth who busts into the world of weightless boxing. Tensions between Earth and Mars are high; poverty is rife on the homeworld where children are still often made by traditional means, whereas Mars has genetically engineered its population for survival and success. Carr's growing popularity
Jun 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book is really fantastic, a fresh and engaging science fiction read. I found the plot to be highly original, the world building sound and the characters suitably complex. Having a scifi novel set around a fictional sport, in this case a zero g mma sport called zero boxing, isn't something I think I've ever seen in a science fiction story. I also loved how diverse the cultures and the characters were, a refreshing change from a traditionally somewhat white dominant genre of fiction. I read t ...more
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Fonda Lee is the World Fantasy Award-winning author of the epic Green Bone Saga, beginning with Jade City and continuing in Jade War and Jade Legacy. She is also the author of the acclaimed science fiction novels Zeroboxer, Exo and Cross Fire.

Fonda is as a three-time winner of the Aurora Award (Canada’s national science fiction and fantasy award), and a multiple finalist for the Nebula Award, the

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