Caitlin's Reviews > Earthrise

Earthrise by M.C.A. Hogarth
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it was amazing
bookshelves: action-adventure, part-of-a-series, science-fiction, self-published, space-opera

I didn’t expect to be marking a “best read of the year” in January, but Earthrise earned it from me.

I went into it not knowing much except the description and that it was a space opera, one of my favorite genres. Earthrise definitely delivers in the adventure department, with space pirates, chase scenes, and shootouts, but what really made the story stand out for me was the depth of the characters and their relationships. Everyone in this book felt real, and while their external problems with evading the aforementioned space pirates would have been compelling alone, what made me unable to stop reading was waiting to see if the characters would resolve their internal conflicts.

The relationship between Reese and Hirianthial, which forms the emotional core of the book, is especially fraught: will she send him away out of stubbornness even though she really doesn’t want to? Will he let her, even though he’s finally found a place and people he belongs with? The ending hints at a potential for romance without being in a hurry to get there, which I found refreshing. So many stories need to have characters get together *right away* for reasons, or have the romantic conflict be the only one in the book. Earthrise successfully negotiates that balance.

A couple more things: I’m so jealous of how good the exposition is in this book. M.C.A Hogarth paints the broad strokes of character backstory, giving us a hint of its complexity without weighing us down; we get just enough for the story. The descriptions—particularly the scenes involving telepathic connection—are vivid and feel amazingly fresh even though I’ve read widely in the space opera genre.

The backmatter is also worth looking at! So many authors don’t put anything back here besides an “about the author” and social info/mailing list sign ups. Readers here will get a teaser for the sequel, Rose Point, a field guide to the races of the Alliance, and a to-scale illustration (!) of the different species to boot. I’m a total geek for “alien field guide” type books and materials; if you are too, take the time to close the popup Amazon window that comes up at the end and browse the backmatter. It’s good stuff.

TL;DR: Earthrise is classic adventure space opera with an emotional richness I’ve rarely seen surpassed. Not to be missed.

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Reading Progress

February 23, 2017 – Shelved
February 23, 2017 – Shelved as: to-read
January 4, 2018 – Started Reading
January 4, 2018 – Shelved as: action-adventure
January 4, 2018 – Shelved as: space-opera
January 4, 2018 – Shelved as: part-of-a-series
January 4, 2018 – Shelved as: self-published
January 4, 2018 – Shelved as: science-fiction
January 6, 2018 –
January 8, 2018 –
53.0% "This book is just perfectly suiting my mood right now: great characters with interesting dynamics, exotic worlds, and a focus on the slice of life of living in a galactic society without the world hanging in the balance."
January 9, 2018 –
68.0% "There's something not quite right about these crystals."
January 12, 2018 – Finished Reading

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