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The Matriarch Matrix is an unique science fiction adventure that pushes the boundaries of the genre in more than one way. Zara Khatum, the main character, isn’t your typical heroine, a far cry from it even. She was once a fighter for her Kurdish people, and went through hell at the hands of her captors, leaving her to seek vengeance first and foremost.
Yet, in another life, she was someone else entirely. A family matriarch, who led her loved ones away from the monsters of the north. She created temples and founded a dynasty with as main purpose to protect a powerful object that hides mysterious powers.
Back in the present day, Zara must work otgether with Peter Gollinger, a quirky Californian, and Jean-Paul, a former Jesuit priest, to solve the mystery of the artifact she swore to protect in her past life.
The book is science-fiction / fantasy in a certain sense, but the way Dan Brown’s books are, while still being firmly set in our contemporary world, the fantasy/scifi part involves an ancient mystery begging to be solved. I quite enjoy this set-up, and was glad to see it here too. However, while I generally enjoy Dan Brown’s books, I have to admit The Matriarch Matrix is of a whole different sort, much more complex, with a lot more layers, and an extremely complicated yet intriguing main character.
For me, even more than the plot, which is very engrossing all by itself, I was charmed by Zara, our protagonist, a woman who is complex and strong, who has her own code of morality, who went through hell yet fights for her beliefs.
While I liked Peter, the other main character, too, I didn’t like him as much as I liked Zara. He was more the stereotypical geek, extremely smart but also extremely clumsy and quirky.
Told partially in the present, partially in the past, this book pushes the boundaries of genre, as well as of time and space, and ultimately provides an outstanding reading experience to anyone who picks it up....more
In 5th Floor Below, Israeli scientists involved in space research accidentally stumbled upon the possible secret to eternal life. Dr. Naama Kashti, a beautiful physicist was exposed to an unknown subtance that made her body undergo very lengthy life cycles during a short period of time. While science can’t explain what’s happening, this doesn’t stop them from experimenting with what might happen next.
Of course, this news shakes the foundation of the government and when the media gets hold of the news, things get even worse. The Vatican is horrified that eternal life could exist. Intelligence agencies from all over the world are travelling to Mount Carmel to find out more about the scientific miracle that has occured. And it turns out that finding the secret to eternal life might not just be a miracle… It might also be extremely dangerous.
A futuristic thriller about the implications of a discovery so magnificent yet so terrifying it would rattle the world to its core. The characters are endaring, in particular Dr. Naama Kashti herself. Sometimes, the book gets a little science-y, explaining things in a rather lengthy way, but one can easily look over that and instead embrace the fast-paced writing and thrilling twists.
A solid read for fans of futuristic thrillers....more
In The Aeon Star, 19-year-old Jenny wants nothing more than a simple, normal life. With seven younger siblings to care for and working hard to start college, she barely has time for anything else. Her life is planned out. She even knows already who she plans to settle down with and start a family of her own – the boy next door.
But Jenny isn’t mean to have an ordinary life. She senses she doesn’t really belong here and if her nightmares are any indication, then the destiny awaiting for her isn’t as peaceful as she hopes it is. Her life is about to be turned by an ancient evil that seeks to destroy her. She’ll need allies if she wants to defeat her enemies, and one of those allies is Nick Grace, a researcher who wants to help her find answers. But can she trust him?
The Aeon Star reminded me of why I enjoy urban fantasy so much. The book is lengthy, at 500 pages, and it might’ve also worked as 2 books, but despite the length, it never really felt that long. I was so enthralled in the world the author described that I barely noticed how long the book was. It started off with action and a fast pace, and never slowed down. The romance was a good addition too, and it didn’t overwhelm the story but just added to it.
An intriguing, engaging read recommended to fans of urban fantasy and new adult books....more
First of all, 2036 The Proof has an amazing cover. I just need to put that out there, I’m in love with the color scheme, the font, everything. Amazing, and it’s what pulled me in to read the book even more so than the blurb did, while it’s usually the other way around.
So for the plot, a lot of things are happening at once. A huge asteroid is rushing toward earth, human DNA is going crazy in a lab, stars are exploding, and it all seems to lead to something terrible about to happen. Chicago police Detective Rick Heller and investigative journalist Will Thorne are square in the middle of the madness, and are trying to figure out what is going, and why scientists related to these discoveries keep getting into accidents.
The mystery seems to go back to an ancient sect dating back from 586 BCE, and humanity’s deepest secret, kept hidden for centuries. It reads kind of like The Da Vinci Code, with humanity itself at stake and a good amount of science fiction thrown in.
A fast-paced, engaging science fiction thriller about humanity and what it means to be alive....more
A couple of years ago, I reviewed Rook by S.J. Andrijeski. It was one of the first books I’d received as a reviewer on this blog, so it still holds a special place in my heart. I really enjoyed it, so when the author told me she had rewritten the book now that she’s grown and matured as an author, and if I wanted to read it again and leave a review, I was thrilled to get back into the world of Rook, reacquaint myself with the characters and the setting, and enjoy this fabulous story all over again.
When rereading my original review, my main complaint then had been the complexity of the book, and the world. I feel like part of that problem has been solved now in the rewrite. The world building is clearer, and while still a complex, multi-layered world, the explanations are clearer and take less time, which means that for the reader, it takes less time to fully fall into the world and setting.
Things that were vague the first time around are now clear, and the writing has improved too. I already thought it was pretty good, but I could see improvements still. Even the characters, Allie and Revik in particular, were better laid out and outlined, and were just overall slightly more interesting than in the first book (although I already thought they were pretty intriguing back then).
One of my favorite aspects of the book is still the ser mythology and prophecies and factions, and all the lore that comes with that. This was indeed an improved version of book one. I hope I find the time soon to read the other books in the series, because when re-reading this one, I’ve come to realize just how much I’ve missed this world and these characters.
PS: The new cover looks amazing too, and I like it better than the first one....more
Redfern is an unique kind of book, one that offers an original plot, a solid setting and an intriguing cast of characters, all combined in one. Once I started reading, I couldn’t put it down.
The book takes place several millennia in the future. Machines have taken over, mankind was cast out. Now, the inhospitable planet Redfern is being made habitable for the proposed rebirth of the human race. All is going well, but then a security breach occurs – Terraform Control spotted an intruder in one of the domes, a ghostly man who can walk through the Terries. A man who Ted recognizes, although it’s impossible, far beyond impossible even.
Ted and his superior, Lisa Carmichael, investigate further, but the more they find out, the more danger they find themselves in, and the more secrets they uncover that could change just about anything.
Ted Holloway and Lisa Carmichael were both intriguing characters. Lisa in particular was witty, intelligent, and had a strong personality. All the characters were well developed, even the secondary ones like Jason and Shandra, and they all added to the plot.
I don’t want to spoil things, but this book went in directions I never saw coming, and continuously kept me on the edge of my seat....more
I started reading When Blood Reigns right after I finished watching Van Helsing, a tv series about a zombie apocalypse with vampires instead of zombies. Both put me in the same mindset: slightly spooked, slightly paranoid, afraid a zombie might turn up any moment, feeling like I couldn’t trust a single of the characters besides the main character, and that not all survivors might have the best of intentions.
Alexis is an intriguing protagonist, and I particularly liked how she grew and changed throughout the book. The author’s combination of a zombie apocalypse with aliens and science-fiction elements is a huge bonus too. The Kryszka, as the aliens are called in this book, have a hand in the zombie apocalype now infesting earth, and that’s an unique spin. I don’t want to give anymore away about the relationships between the main cast, the zombeies, and the Kryszka, but it’s very compelling and entertaining.
As with all apocalypse survivor stories, you get a sense of hopelessness. Not only is the world getting destroyed, there’s also no one left to trust. Good guys turn into bad guys. People who should rely on each other, betray each other.
The writing is solid, and once I started reading, I kept turning page after page, curious to find out what would happen next to these characters. Not for the faint of heart (it is horror, after all) but definitely an enjoyable, suspenseful read for fans of horror and scifi....more
In The Visitor, Tak, an alien anthropologist, is charged with studyng the humans of the United States in an effort to determine if Earthlings present a threat. She’s only learned one Earth language, English, so the US is a natural choice to go to…except she’s detected when descending through the atmosphere and can narrowly escape capture by fleeing to Europe. She eventually lands in Poland, where she meets an international arms dealer, Baron Von Limbach, who becomes her guide and study object.
But the Baron isn’t exactly a good example of humanity’s kindness, love and compassion, as his latest plan is to stop the communist takeover of Tibet by creating a race-specific version of the Ebola virus. This was actually a very chilling part of the book, because it sounded like something that could be done in real life, if only you brought the right people together. Chilling, to say the least.
Tak is an intriguing character, and her mission is quite dangerous. The combination of a terrorism weapon and threat and science fiction, with the aliens and how they think about humans, is an interesting combination.
I loved this book, and finished it in one sitting. Recommended to fans of science fiction....more
What if you could explore other planets through virtual reality? What if you could travel beyond our solar system – albeit, in a virtual way? That’s the premise of The Great Connection: Worlds in Waiting, in which Raif Masters is forced to spend his last school holiday exploring extraterrestrial worlds through this virtual reality setup.
Raif is, thankfully, not alone in this endavor. Terry, bound to the service of the Masters family, joins him as they go explore words, and together they meet Cinder, who has discovered a secret that could change the future forever.
This was a daring, suspenseful adventure with relatable, easy to connect with characters. I particularly liked Raif, who is an intriguing protagonist. The writing was straightforward, not too flowery, but I didn’t quite mind, as it allowed room for the plot and characters to shine. It’s a very imaginative story, original and refreshing, and I would recommend it to all science fiction fans....more
Dystortions: 100 Hues of Purple tells the story of Addy O’Malibul, a former journalist who is convicted of murder and imprisoned on the planet Malaprop, which is strikingly similar to Earth. One of the differences is that Malaprop suffers from Dystortions in translations of data transmissions, with glitched up radio communications. The Dystortions are actually quite intriguing – while changing and twisting data, they often reveal underlying truths.
I enjoyed the parallel universe of Malaprop, and how they want to be like Hearth, and how everyone, politicians and media alike, twist words to rewrite history and change facts – not that very different from earth, if you look at the core of it. Addy was an amazing character. She started out as your every day protagonist with a pretty regular life, until things turned south for her, and she had to adapt to her new circumstances of life. I especially liked the way she changed and grew throughout the story.
The plot also has a good amount of humor, and the writing is good too. This is an excellent scifi mystery for fans of the genre....more
S.H.A.Y is science fiction romance at its finest. Shay, our protagonist, has just turned eighteen, which means she has completed phase one: developmental, and that she no longer requires assistance of her optional human parent. She’s a synthetic hominid assumed youth (S.H.A.Y.) created by science… but that doesn’t mean she wants science to define her. She has morals, she has feelings, and when phase two : experimental, means she has to experience loss, in the form of losing Darla, her parent, she is determined to make sure that doesn’t happen.
Shay has formed an escape plan, but it all goes south very soon. She crashes into an island off the coast of Florida, and is rescued by E.R.I.C, a boy whose adaptation skills she’ll need if she wants to keep Darla safe – but he is created by the same scientists who want to kill Darla. Can she trust him?
This was an amazing read. The story was so original, and so fast-paced and thrilling that once I started reading, I couldn’t put it down. Since this is a novella, it’s a short read, but an intriguing one all the same. I’m excited to learn more about the characters in the second book....more
The Moreva of Astoreth is an interesting blend of fantasy and science fiction. For me, the only downside to the book would be the cover. I just don’t connect with it. I know a lot of fantasy authors like these kind of 3D renderings of characters – and granted, finding stock images or something for a character looking like Moreva, is impossible, but still. I would’ve preferred an illustration above the current graphic on the cover.
That aside, they say don’t judge a book by its cover, and the contents of this book are pretty solid. The story goes like this: Moreva Tehi is the granddaughter of a powerful goddess. Because she refuses to do as the goddess says, she’s temporarily banished, and send to the far northern corner of the planet as punishment. There, she learns more about herself than she ever thought possible, tries to find a cure for the Red Fever tormenting her planet, and even falls in love.
A lot of things happen in the course of the book, but I don’t want to spoil them, so I kept the synopsis brief. Moreva is a strong character. At the beginning, she was quite annoying, and it felt like she was being rebellious just for the sake of it. But, as with all interesting characters, she changed and grew a lot throughout the book, and I started liking her more and more.
The author did a phenomenal job crafting worthy secondary characters too. Often, authors pour all their energy into crafting a well-rounded, three-dimensional main chareacter and then end up having boring, bland secondary characters. Here, the author obviously put a lot of effort into every single character, with strengths, weaknesses, and their very own personalities.
The world building was impressive too, especially since so much happens – and it all makes sense. Not once does the book venture into territory of the impossible – of course it’s fantasy so things that happen are impossible in real life, but I mean that it’s never impossible for the rules of this world.
It’s a truly impressive book. I would give it a 4 star rating, if not for the cover and for how the writing could be a little tighter in some places (for example, sometimes we do get a rather lengthy exposition of daily tasks that could be left out or shortened). But seriously, I really enjoyed this, and I think it would be a great read for every mature science fiction / fantasy fan....more
Murder in the Generative Kitchen has got to be one of the most original scifi books I’ve ever read. First, imagine it’s not a perosn who kills another person – it’s a kitchen. Then, jury duty basically being a beach holiday where you watch the trial via virtual reality. Suddenly jury duty sounds a lot more interesting, doesn’t it? That’s what happens to Julio, who after a bad break-up with his girlfriend, finds himself interested in one of his fellow jurors. But talking to her is strictly forbidden.
The question on whether the kitchen did the killing, or the person did, was what intrigued me the most about this book. The characters were well-developed, in particular Julio, and the writing was engaging. An intriguing view on a high-tech, futuristic world. ...more
The Athena Operation is a unique, spellbinding novel that is refreshing yet manages to stay true to the more classic tropes of science fiction. One of the highlights for me was that the story didn’t get too technical – one of the things I often find off-putting about science fiction is getting lost in technical explanations. Here, the story and plot flowed well, and I found any explanations were short and to the point, and easy to understand.
Seraph Aydrian, our main character, is tasked with leading an army of soldiers, mercenaries and civilians against the assault of the seythra – a race of strong-willed aliens that have declared war against the rest of the universe. Because of the large number of seythra and the fragility of trust between factions, races and planets, it will be the toughest battle of Seraph’s career.
I really enjoyed Seraph. He’s not perfect, in fact he has quite a few flaws, but I found him all the more enjoyable because of those flaws. The writing was fast-paced, and the plot held quite a few surprises.
I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys science-fiction, and I look forward to the sequel....more
In Irina’s Cards starts with Irina Proffer seeing strange visions, inspired by a deck of tarot cards. To get answers, she travels to Victoria, where she quickly discovers a world dominated by genetic science and supernatural mystery, mixed in one. She starts working for Innoviro Industries, where she meets other ‘variants’, people who are like her – different from everyone else. But not everythign is as it seems, and Irina struggles to figure out who she can trust and who she can’t trust, all the while keeping check on her emotions, as she finds herself at the heart of two overlapping love triangles.
The book starts out slow, but once it finds its pace, it becomes an enjoyable read. The story is complex enough to be entertaining, and it boosts an impressive host of characters, Irina in particular. She’s a brave, intelligent heroine, and I could easily relate to her.
An excellent start to a new series. I would recommend this book to fans of series like Divergent, or just of scifi romance in general, and I look forward to reading the sequel....more
In The X-Cure, Dr. Alex Winter, a brilliant biomedical engineer, has teamed up with Dr. Xiu Ling, a beautiful Chinese scientist, and together they’ve discovered a revolutionary cure for cancer. Although quite a technical topic, the author did a great job of explaining it in terms regular human beings, with no medical background, can understand as well. Alex and his team have to work in secret, to prevent their cure from being discovered by Tando Pharmaceuticals, a corporate giant, and the world’s largest and richest drug producer. Tando Pharmaceuticals are ruthless, and would stop at nothing to dominate the world drug market.
When it turns out the treatment is flawed as patients start dying after four months, Tando Pharmaceuticals enlist their ‘Mercenary Soldiers of Medicine’, putting the lives of Alex and his team in severe danger.
While the idea of a pharmaceutical company employing hit men might seem farfetched, it actually works under the circumstances set out in this book, and it’s not all that unbelievable once you start diving into the story.
This is a fast-paced, suspenseful thriller with just the right balance between story and characterization....more
In Awakening, a hospital is the target of a suspected terrorist bombing. But as first responders get to the scene, they discover something that will change the course of human history. The terrorist bombing turns out to be something different, and the creatures emerging from the wreckage aren’t human: they’re aliens, dressed in blue-tinted armor, and with plans President Clark can only guess at. Three humans are chosen as Earth’s champions, and they alone can save humanity from destruction.
This book reads much like a scifi movie. The pacing is fast, and we tumble right into the action, right from the start, and from then on, race from every scene to the next until an epic climax. The characters are three-dimensional, especially the major players, but the book focuses more heavily on plot than on characterization, making it feel even more like you’re reading a movie.
Awakening had quite a few unexpected but welcome surprises, and a fluent writing style. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a good, fast-paced scifi novel....more
In A Family War, a group of elites have found a way to enhance their genes by incorporating technology into their bodies, making them live for far longer, and making them far stronger than ordinary people. They’re called the Oligarchs, and they rule the world of business, and as such the world. The world has stumbled back into a class-system, with people who have had no enhancements belonging to the lowest class, and being responsible for labor. But when some of the Oligarchs decide these regular humans are no longer needed, and a new world war ensues.
Helena is one of the Oligarchs, but she’s keen on stopping the world war, and on preventing the genocide on the human race. She must find a boy who could save her family, humanity, and put an end to the war. Most of the book focuses on Helena’s journey, which is both a “real” journey and an emotional one. The Helena we meet at the start of the book is vastly different from the Helena we see toward the end.
I loved how the technology was explained – simple enough for readers to understand without having to break their heads over it. The writing was great too, and I really enjoyed reading this scifi novel....more
In Genesis, tech icon Aiden Markusson has the seemingly perfect life. He’s wealthy, he’s engaged to the love of his life, his company is growing extremely fast. But then, his perfect life starts to unravel when he begins to experience terrible headaches, that come with sensory distortions and strange bursts of strengths. As he grows more worried about what is going on, and who or what is behind it, he is plunged nito a world of mercenaries, body modification and bio-engineering, hackers, and conspiracies.
Facing the truth might be tougher than Aiden ever imagined, as he’s faced with the possibility that perhaps he isn’t entirely human. While strugglign with that, he also has to race against time to learn to control his newfound abilities, for the future of humanity depends on him.
I really liked the slow set up, where we’re introduced to Aiden and spend some time in his mind before the story really takes off. Genesis was very suspenseful, and after the first few slower chapters, I found myself engaged in the story, and I couldn’t stop reading. Despite focusing on some complicated matters, the book never trailed off into difficult scientific explanations (as I’ve found is often the case in scifi) and instead offers an enjoyable, suspenseful rollercoaster of a plot with realistic characters and a few very surprising twists....more
Koolura and the Mayans is an engaging read for young adult readers and middle graders who are advanced for their ages. Koolura is a twelve-year-old girl with amazing psychic powers. Although this is the third book in a series, I had no trouble following along without reading the previous books.
Koolura and her friend Leila are touring a Mayan archeological dig when they find a mysterious devices that throws them back in time to the Mayan civilization’s prime days. Aliens from the planet Aquari are living amongst the Mayan natives, and Koolura and Leila have to figure out their purpose there. Are they planning to take over earth, and if so, can the two friends stop them?
The author has a vivid imagination, and does an admirable job describing the historical setting of the Mayan civilization. Koolura and Leila act like real kids / young adults, and are easy to connect to. This book is a pleasant read with a fast-paced plot, an easy, flowing writing style and fun characters....more
When reading Trapped, I could barely believe it was the first book I read by this author. Alison Aimes has an unique imagination, and she manages to craft gritty, but believable, scifi worlds. In Trapped, Bella West crashes on Dragath25, a penal planet where a person’s life isn’t worth much. It’s a harsh world, where survival is the only thing that matters, and in order to survive, Bella has to make a deal with 673. He is ruthless, a criminal, but there’s another side to him too.
I liked Bella. She’s always taken care of others, and even on Dragath25, she’s still putting others’ needs in front of her own. She wouldn’t leave without her friends, for example, no matter how dire the situation ahead of them. Throughout the book, she went through quite the development, and the Bella at the end is a more mature and stronger version than the Bella we encountered at the start.
673 started out as rather unlikeable – he cared about no one but himself, or at least that’s what he liked to believe. But soon enough, he starts opening up to Bella, becoming more of the person he was before he was brought to Dragath25, and then he becomes more likeable, and by the end, I really felt for him. He’s actually a decent person once you strip away the layers of guilt he’s felt for all this time.
With excellent world building, great writing, and a lot of hot, sizzling chemistry between the main characters, I recommend this book to everyone who enjoys scifi romance....more
A great YA superhero / scifi novel. Devon was my favorite of all the characters, and I loved his quirky sense of humor. The plot was unique and entertaining, and not predictable at all. I’d like to read another psion adventure soon, so I’m looking forward to the next book....more
I’m a klutz, so I could easily relate to Oscar Schmidt – he’s a klutz too. He’s also being bullied, but that changes when he finds an abandoned train caboose one day after school. Filled with whimsical, fun elements, humor, and adventure, this is a great read for middle graders (and the occasional adult, haha)....more
Small town horror with aliens. Decades ago, Sam and his friends saw an alien creature, and the experience has haunted them since. Now the “Dover Demon”, as the creature was nicknamed, is back, and has gotten its claws into Nicky, Sam’s son. An entertaining book, but the pacing was quite slow at the start and it took a while before I began enjoying the story. Protagonist Sam annoyed me to no end though, and I found his decisions questionable at best....more
Corlex is a bounty hunter out on a mission when he stumbles upon a Reaper, an assassin of sorts. Out here, he’s the only one capable of stopping her. In this fast-paced, short read that’s ideal for when you have some limited spare time but not too much, we learn more about Corlex and about the Reaper he captured.
The world-building is off to a good start, as is the story. The world of Corlex seems intriguing enough, and I wanted to know more. The story picked up fast, and while it does offer some closure, it entices readers to grab the next installment and read on.
The characterization wasn’t always perfect though, but since this is the first episode and the reader needs to be introduced to the characters, that’s a forgiveable and minor flaw.
An enjoyable, fast read recommended to sci-fi fans....more
I previously read and reviewed the first book in the series, Regina Shen: Resilience, and after reading it, I looked forward to starting the second book in the series. Regina Shen: Vigilance takes place two years after the events of the first book.
Mo-Mere believes Regina is ready to jump the Barrier Wall, and start looking for her sister. After two years of training, studying and honing her survival skills, now is the time for Regina and Colleen to be reunited and to find some answers. Except, well, what did you expect, things don’t go as planned. For Regina, she’ll have to remain vigilant and find out who she can trust and who she can’t – but the same counts for the other characters too. DeMarco is still after her, and will do whatever it takes to capture her. Regina’s quest to find her sister brings her to university, close to where they’re holding her sister – but will she able to find her and save her?
I thought this book was more thrilling even than the first, and I already enjoyed that one a lot. The ending was very surprising, and I actually had to re-read it; I hadn’t expected some of the plot twists.
I loved Regina in the first book, but I liked her even more in this one. She’s grown as a person, she’s more determined than ever, and she knows how to keep her head cool in dangerous situations.
The new characters were an excellent addition too, especially Ester. A solid sequel to the first book, and a great addition to the series. Can’t wait to read the final part....more
I wasn’t sure what to expect when I started reading RUN Ragged. A book focusing on a world where women having taken control? That sounded right up my alley, but I already saw many ways the book could go wrong. However, it didn’t fall into any of the pitfalls I’d conjured in my mind – if anything, it was a surprisingly original and intriguing read.
Rhia is a strong and independent sea captain who is unwillingly trapped in The Center, a re-education facility. The facility was build to help people fit into the rules of this new society. You can already guess how wrong that went. Torture and brainwashing and manipulation, and while the warden believes she’s doing the right thing, Rhia knows that what’s happening at the facility isn’t right in the slightest. She stands up against the system, although it might cost her everything she ever held dear.
It’s an insightful look into the price humanity is willing to pay for peace, and the lone rebels that dare to stand up against the system. Rhia is an engaging character, complex and easy to relate to, and the author did an admirable job creating this futuristic world so keen on peace it often forgets basic human rights.
It’s hard to classify the right audience for this book. I’d say just about everyone. It touches on some tough subjects while still being supsenseful and entertaining....more
Regina Shen: Resilience is the first book in a trilogy focusing on Regina Shen, a young girl who is forced by the World Federation to live on the outside of the Wall. Aforementioned walls were built to hold back rising seas due to climate change and to protect the world behind the walls. Like that wasn’t bad enough, a hurricane raging overhead seperated Regina from her family, and she’s now completely run out of luck. Meanwhile, the Federation agents claim she has unique DNA that could save mankind – except that Regina doesn’t trust the Department of Antiquities at all, especially not after what she’s read in the forbidden books she gathered from sunken cities. So now Regina must fight to stay alive while looking for her family.
The best thing about this book, hands down, is the world building. I liked the idea of barrier walls, of how the world is dangling on the brink of extinction, the climate changes that happened, and so on. The world Regina Shen lives in is anything but friendly for the people inhabiting it (which gets kind of scary if you think of it as a futuristic version of our planet). Add in the bonus of no books existing in this dystopian world (oh no, no books!) and you get an intriguing setting for this first book.
Regina Shen is tough. Tougher than most main characters, especially teens. She’s a survivor through and through, and no matter what life throws at her, she manages to get through it. As the title says, she’s resilient, our Regina, resourceful, clever and determined. She’s complex and feels like a real person, and I couldn’t help but cheer her on.
I won’t spoil the ending, but it definitely made me curious for the next book....more
The Fall of the Midnight Scorpions shows sci-fi romance at its finest. Ro Bernard, a former member of the Midnight Scorpions, a band of mercenaries, is struggling to keep a roof over her head and some food in her belly. When she meets Karin Cassels, whose son died at the hands of the Scorpions. Ro and Karin come up with a plan to kill Dane Zedek, the leader of the Scorpions and a scientist of the insane variety, save Ro’s lover who has been turned into a hybrid thanks to aformentioned crazy scientist and take down the Scorpions once and for all.
Ro and Karin enlist the help of Reggie Quinn, who agrees to join in exchange for loot. Reggie’s morality is questionable at times but that doesn’t stop Ro from feeling attracted to him…
I don’t want to spoil the plot, so I’ll just say that it did held a few interesting surprises and that I genuinely enjoyed it. The author has a casual writing style and even though it’s science-fiction, there are no page-long descriptions or explanations of how things work. It’s quite fast-paced too. The characters were great, especially Ro. She was complex and had a lot of different emotions vying for attention in her mind; although she still loved Callum, she felt attracted to Reggie, and it complicated matters for her, but made it all the more interesting for the reader.
An enjoyable read from start to end, with engaging characters and an interesting plot mixed with sizzling romance....more
When I started reading The Last War, I expected most of the novel to take place in deep space, but that wasn’t the case. In fact, most of the book focuses on a small village. I didn’t mind that, though, if anything it’s an outstanding science-fiction experience to read about a vast universe and still keep focused on one tiny, seemingly insignificant place. The book focuses mostly on the tension between the Noukari. They’re aliens struggling to survive on a savage planet and they have telepathic skills.
But the Noukari aren’t always on the same page of things, especially not when it comes to their creation and their role in the universe. Some, like Apius, believe their creators, the Animex, are Gods, and rule the village based on a strict religious doctrine. Others believe that looking for these Godlike creatures is a waste of time since they may or may not exist, and that they should rather focus on the evolution of their race. At first, the distinction between two groups leads to arguments and debates, but soon violence threatens to erupt and this once-peaceful species threatens to fall into chaos because of the dilemma.
While not as action-packed as some scifi novels, this one does a good effort to look on the emotional and philosophical side of things. Basically we see the age-old tension between creationists and believers in a diety on the one hand, and the non-believers or evolutionists on the other hand, except in an extraterristrial context. There’s a lot of tension throughout, a veritable power struggle even, and while offering some keen insights, the book is never preachy. The writing is good, and the characters are enjoyable, and all quite different. A theological debate in a scifi setting....more