Faith's Reviews > Only Human

Only Human by Sylvain Neuvel
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This is the final book of the Themis trilogy and I don't think it would work as a standalone. The giant robots that visited Earth in the last book have returned to their home planet, Esat Ekt. Unfortunately, Dr. Rose Franklin, Eva Reyes, her father Vincent Couture and General Eugene Govender were celebrating aboard Themis when the Council of Akitast (aliens who decide how their world deals with others) caused Themis to travel back to Esat Ekt. The Council refused to return their accidental visitors to Earth, but after 10 years they are finally back. The book is a combination of flashbacks to their time on Esat Ekt and their lives after their return. Earth has undergone a lot of political changes during those 10 years. As in the first two books, the story is told entirely in the form of journal or log entries and transcribed interviews. It's not my favorite writing style and I really missed the unnamed interviewer from the first two books. His replacement is Russian intelligence officer Katherine Lebedev. I thought that her dialogue was very jokey and awkward.

I loved the first two books, but I wasn't that crazy about this one. It had none of the charm or imagination of the prior books. I found it to be preachy and there was too much politics (on both Earth and Esat Ekt) and not enough science or robots. Even though I agree with the author's point of view, I don't really want to be preached to in my scifi. There are internment camps on Earth for those people who have the most alien DNA. Muslims are particularly singled out for internment. (Really, the author is pretty ham-handed with his social commentary throughout this book.)

The planet was not thoroughly described but what description there was made it sound too much like Earth. The Ekt had very similar names (and were given no personalities) so it was difficult to tell them apart. Eva was an annoying, self centered teenager. Finally, the interviews and log records kept going around in circles rehashing the same arguments over and over again. Although I was disappointed by this conclusion to the trilogy, I wouldn't mind reading more about Themis.

I received a free copy of this book from the publisher.
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Reading Progress

December 31, 2017 – Shelved
March 21, 2018 – Started Reading
April 2, 2018 – Finished Reading

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