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Gunpowder Moon

3.63  ·  Rating details ·  784 ratings  ·  160 reviews

“Interesting quirks and divided loyalties flesh out this first novel in which sf and mystery intersect in a well-crafted plot...Pedreira’s science thriller powerfully highlights the human politics and economics from the seemingly desolate expanse of the moon. It will attract readers who enjoyed Andy Weir’s lunar crime caper Artemis.” -- Library Journal, starred review

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Kindle Edition, 307 pages
Published February 13th 2018 by Harper Voyager
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Jeffrey Keeten
”Life is so tenuous on Luna’s desiccated expanse that staying alive is an endeavor practiced with almost religious fervor. No one ever deserts another man on the Moon. Race, creed, religion, flag---none of that crap matters. Dechert would risk his life for any Chinese digger in distress, as long as they were within range. And he knew they would do the same for him.

At least until what happened to Cole.”

 photo earth-moon-system_zpswvfmtzi5.jpg
The Moon---”Earth’s naked shadow.”

When survival is paramount, we are drawn together in the in
Will Byrnes
We are still the beast, and we always will be. And all this stuff that we fight over—power, money, territory, helium-3—it’s little more than a carcass on an African plain.
Serenity 1 most definitely deserved its name as a peaceful place. But things change. Dechert is in charge of this Level 1 Lunar outpost, and his death-free record at the base has just been liquidated with extreme prejudice, a shaped charge under a manual hatch on a lunar crawler. Ka-boom! Bad enough the damage from the charg
A murder mystery at the moon!


In a near future, the Moon becomes a key resource to get Helium-3 from the moon dust, vital to process fuel for fusion reactors.

Each major political power with space capabilities has its own facility at the Moon, like USA, China and Russia.

Caden Dechert, manager of the American one, is a war veteran and he can’t avoid to notice that the moon dust smells just like gunpowder…

…so it’s not so rare that a murder happens.

Not matter the
I received a free advance copy of this from the publisher for review.

They say to never judge a book by its cover, but if you show me a space helmet with a hole in the visor laying on the surface of the moon…..I’m gonna read that book.

It’s the year 2072 and Earth has just begun to recover from a global climate catastrophe. Part of that comeback has been based on using helium-3 as a fuel source, and since the moon has oodles of the stuff there are now large scale mining operations happening on it
Manuel Antão
Nov 04, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018
If you're into stuff like this, you can read the full review.

Old-As-Dirt-SF Prop: "Gunpowder Moon" David Pedreira

I used to like Asimov as a kid but grew out of him. All of his characters sound the same ('Now see here') with the worst example being his later "Foundation" books where Asimov-as-he-is and Asimov-as-he-wishes-he-was fly around the universe searching for Earth and meet a shared-consciousness lass with a nice bottom. All of his books are detective novels and end with the hero spending
Feb 12, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Moon has been a hot topic in science fiction lately. Ian McDonald has his elegantly overstuffed Luna trilogy; Andy Weir gave us an intricately detailed, but overly mechanical procedural, Artemis; John Kessel snuck under the radar with his magnificent utopian epic The Moon and the Other. The cover and description of David Pedreira’s debut novel, Gunpowder Moon, seems to promise a good old-fashioned murder mystery.
It’s a no-brainer, really. Humans have no earthly business living on the moon –
Mogsy (MMOGC)
3.5 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum

When I first found out about Gunpowder Moon, I knew I had to read it. I’m a sucker for a good sci-fi mystery in space, and the novel’s lunar setting further sold me on it.

But this is not just another one of your simple murder mysteries, and the main protagonist is not your typical detective. It is the year 2072, and Caden Dechert is a former Marine heading up a US mining operation on moon. He’s a good leader, drawing fro
I’m giving it 3.5 stars rounded up to 4. This is a murder mystery set on the moon. Moon related fiction seems to be a popular trend right now, but I’m not complaining.

The writing in this book was excellent. The author does a very good job of expressing the cold desolate landscape. He described various ridges, the way the moon dust levitates in the air as night turns to day, and let’s not forget the smell. Moon dust smells like cordite, or more simply, gunpowder. Hence the name, Gunpowder Moon, a
May 02, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 to 4 stars. Science fiction isn’t my thing at all. However this novel intrigued me. (Btw thanks to Harper Collins for the ARC).

It’s 2072 and people live on the moon and are trying to save Earth. When one of the Americans is killed, making history as the first murder on the moon the military shows up and tries to take over production of the HE-3 that Earth needs and to start a fight with the Chinese.

What turned me off was I couldn’t get a visual inside my head of what half these things or l
Mike (the Paladin)
I put this on my "Thriller" shelf...but that's being a little generous I think.

I saw this book "touted" and read the synopsis which says (quote) "this debut novel combines the inventiveness of The Martian, the intrigue of The Expanse, and the thrills of Red Rising."

I'm sorry, it isn't and doesn't. This is a fairly standard political story with a slight mystery rolled in (who's behind the bombings and other "disasters" on the Moon at the Moon Base). Are the villains the Chinese...or is the culpri
Apr 07, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A solid political hard scifi that has does some things well but wont set the scifi world on fire. The plot is pretty standard, with a resoltuion that seemed pretty cliched. It was resolved relatively easily. I however like the science behind the moon and its mining. The novel is getting some comparisons to Artemis. I feel like they are completely different in style and structure. Only common feature is the setting being the moon.The characters are a little one dimensional and didnt really captur ...more
Feb 20, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
That was fun. Highly recommended for fans of Cormoran Strike and military fiction: Dechert leads a team of quirky alpha men (and one clever not too girly woman) in a constant battle against the lunar elements. Now he has to try and keep them safe from a murderer, and possibly, a war.

A strong space mystery, the tone and cast are reminiscent of the first book in The Expanse. A tad broody, but it's mostly fast paced and cynical and a promising first novel.

ARC from publisher
Mike (the Paladin)
I put this on my "Thriller" shelf...but that's being a little generous I think.

I saw this book "touted" and read the synopsis which says (quote) "this debut novel combines the inventiveness of The Martian, the intrigue of The Expanse, and the thrills of Red Rising."

I'm sorry, it isn't and doesn't. This is a fairly standard political story with a slight mystery rolled in (who's behind the bombings and other "disasters" on the Moon at the Moon Base). Are the villains the Chinese...or is the culpri
Mar 07, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: didnt-make-it
DNF. Took three chapters before we met a non-male character. Three sentences into that, one of the men is staring at her ass. A couple paragraphs later, we get a detailed description of her appearance (the only other character with such a description was the token POC, naturally) culminating in the main character reflecting on her beauty. Sigh. Goodbye forever. It's 2018 and I don't want to read about white men anymore. Don't @ me.
Jamie Collins
2.5 stars. This is billed as a murder mystery set on the moon, and isn’t that a great cover image? I found it an okay read, but I suspect other fans of science fiction will enjoy it more.

The setting is great, even if the author is too much in love with the technology he has invented. The writing in itself is quite good, except that there was something lacking about the characterization. I didn’t think there was much heart to the story, and the characters never felt like real people.

The plot tech
Peter Tillman
Mar 08, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sf-fantasy, at-bg-pa
Good, gritty near-future novel of mining, mayhem and murder on the moon, which morphs into bad political stuff. Well-written, good character sketches, nice touches of moral ambiguity. Well, sort of. I particularly liked the ending. A worthy debut, and one of the better novels on living and working on the moon that I've read. Recommended reading: 3.8 stars.

Linda Nagata liked it:
"An excellent near-future thriller. This one’s got it all — realistic technology, an all-too-b
Apr 01, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
**** Review to come. ****
Mar 18, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: scifi
I received an advanced copy from Harper Voyager in anticipation of a fair review.

Gunpowder Moon started out slow and was heading for a 2 Star level but it picked up about a third of the way through and the final third was excellent, exciting, edge-of-the seat -- really showed the potential of this new author. I'm giving it 4 Stars with the expectation he ups his game on the next one.

Strong point: I really liked his attention to detail on the challenges and everyday living on the moon. You get a
Beth Cato
Dec 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017, science, mystery
I was provided a galley of the book by the publisher.

A murder mystery on the moon. It's as simple as that, and as awesome as that. Dechert is the chief of a lunar mining operation. He's not young. He's had substantial military experience. He's on the moon to get away from that past and to be the gruff father to his eccentric crew of misfits. But when incidents of sabotage crop up and one of his miners is killed in an explosion, the higher echelons of American forces blame a rival Chinese mining
Wieder ein Roman, bei dem es um den Helium-3 Abbau auf dem Mond geht, ein Polit- und Military-Thriller in einer unmenschlichen Umgebung.
Der Spannungsbogen beginnt mit der Beschreibung des IST-Zustandes auf Erde und Mond. Die politische Situation hat sich auf der Erde durch die Zuspitzung der Energiekrise (hier Energiemaximum genannt) und der Klimaerwärmung gewandelt. Die Chinesen haben mehr oder weniger die Technologieführerschaft von den Amerikanern gewonnen. Der Helium-3- Abbau auf dem Mond gi
Samantha (AK)
Mar 08, 2018 marked it as did-not-finish  ·  review of another edition
DNF at Page 58


The premise is fine, if not terribly original. Typical cast set-up, cookie-cutter protagonist, and it might still have been an ok read for a brain-fried evening but for Lane.

Or, more precisely, Pedreira's portrayal of Lane through Dechert's gaze.

I've read a fair bit of SF. I'd like to think my tolerance for eyeroll-worthy descriptions of The Woman™ is alright. But here it's just the nail in the coffin. Neither the plot nor the writing are strong enough to keep me rea
Patricia Bergman
I won this uncorrected proof from Goodreads.

The year is 2072 and both the US and China are mining helium-3 on the moon which provides assistance to earth due to climate change damage. A murder happens and the Chinese are suspected. Although I finished the book, I have a problem recommending it to others. Sci-fi enthusiasts willl probably love it. I can give the author kudos for a creative novel that may eventually become more true that we think.
Mar 05, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's way too easy to die on the moon, and terrifyingly easy to start a war. These are the two thoughts that dominate the reader's mind throughout Gunpowder Moon.

A mining operations commander and his crew get caught up in an international crisis when drilling equipment is sabotaged and a young specialist is killed.

An intense, disturbing read.
Oct 25, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Miners trapped between their own consciouses and international greed. A scary and compelling story of a future on the moon that seems all too capable of becoming true.

For my full review:

For all my reviews:
Ian Luther
Alright, let's distill this book down to the main points and save everyone some time:

-war is bad
-non-soldiers don't know war is bad
-sometimes war is kind of fun though
-but it's still bad
-people who are in war are sad
-people who used to be in war are still sad
-people die in war and its sad
-softy bureaucrats do bad stuff with war
-women are magical creatures
-space is dangerous

That's the bulk of it. This book seems like what you get when you enjoy sci-fi and war novels so you try and write your own,
Apr 20, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This was a rough journey. Where do I start? The story, the characters, or the "science"?

Its a tough choice. I'll be brief for each.

Lets start with the writing (not even listed above since it is just bad).
"Missiles certainly were." That was a complete sentence from the book. That is all I will say on this matter. The book is full of incomplete thoughts.

The story was lack luster. There was a very tenuous plot which seemed to be very forced so the authors political views and stances could be winded
Thanks for the free advance copy!

This was no The Martian. Interesting, but way more sciency and not written as well. Like The Martian, I had to skim and just keep reading even if I wasn't quite understanding, because I wouldn't and just needed to get through. It was intriguing in thinking about space exploration/business and ongoing politics in the future. It is set in 2072 - which I love since I'll be 100 years old then - and hopefully still able to grasp what's going on in the world and beyond
Apr 08, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love Pedreira’s near-future, horrifying climate collapse, economic crisis and all. His central hero is a memorable one, Lew Archer broken by modern war and endless wartime, slowly building himself back into someone recognizably human. I do wish Pedreira had spent a bit more time on the mystery, since once things kick up they just do not stop. Consequently, the central question’s resolution feels the wrong kind of abrupt. And outside of his hero, Pedreira’s cast tend more towards interesting sk ...more
Jan 25, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I don't read a ton of sci-fi, and I really enjoyed Gunpowder Moon. This is a book about resource mining on the moon, and the first murder that occurs up there. It was intriguing and had some good suspenseful parts. I think there were a few too many characters to keep track of, but it was manageable enough. Some of the science was a bit over my head, but it wasn't too bad - this book is definitely readable for a science dummy like me. This was a good read, and I would definitely read more from th ...more
Apr 27, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I've been a fan of science fiction stories taking place on Luna since I read Tongues of the Moon. Moon-based science fiction is seeing a bit of a revival lately. Between the recent Artemis and New Moon (Luna #1) series (my reviews) there have been more books with the Moon as a setting in a shorter period of time than there have been since The Moon is a Harsh Mistress. This book is one of the recent crop.

Writing was OK. I found a couple of sentence fragments. The book would have benefited fro
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A former reporter for newspapers including the Tampa Tribune and the St. Petersburg Times, David Pedreira won awards for his writing from the Associated Press, the Society of Professional Journalists, the Maryland-Delaware-DC Press Association and the American Society of Newspaper Editors. He has also served as a corporate communications director for enterprise software and telecommunications comp ...more
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“If you ever do something as cosmically stupid as that again, at least get it on video. You'll need a keepsake of this place when I fire your ass, and nobody will ever believe this one when you get back on the beach." 

Cole Benson grinned. "Right. I can't even screw up good." 

"Then don't screw up at all.” ”
Even grief can be selfish. 1 likes
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