Tag: Science Fiction

Mini eARC Review: Ride On by Gwen Cole

Mini eARC Review: Ride On by Gwen Cole

In the near post-apocalyptic future, the skies are always gray and people are constantly searching for the sun. Partial synopsis provided by Goodreads. Ride On Author: Gwen Cole Publication Date: May 22, 2018 Publisher: Sky Pony Press Page Count: 280 Format: eARC Genre: Young Adult, […]

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Blog Tour & Author Interview: Beyond the Moon by R.J. Wood

Blog Tour & Author Interview: Beyond the Moon by R.J. Wood

Beyond the Moon The Voyages of Jake Flynn #2 By R.J. Wood This is my stop during the blog tour for Beyond the Moon by R.J. Wood. This tour is organized by Lola’s Blog Tours. The blog tour runs from 11 till 24 June. See […]

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Cover Reveals for Wheel Gone Cats & Of Stars and Monsters!

Cover Reveals for Wheel Gone Cats & Of Stars and Monsters!

Wheels Gone Cats

PUBLISHER: PARLIAMENT HOUSE PRESS

Synopsis

In a future where violence is encouraged and duels are required by law, Dathin Long has the answer: devolution. He proposes a medical procedure that will restore humanity to the state of primal bliss—to pure reptilian instinct, before guilty consciences intruded.  When a boy’s grandmother is admitted to the hospital for pneumonia, he learns the procedure will be forced upon her. To save her, the boy enlists the help of Lee Bellows, a member of the hospital staff, to search the records and find his grandmother. But the deeper Lee looks, the more horrible things he finds, until the controllers start looking back at him. His conscience needs adjusting, and soon the procedure may be forced upon him. In a flooded New Orleans in the end days, the only hope is a hero who’s lost his memory and is just trying to get by…

Find Out About Other Books by Beaird Glover at https://www.facebook.com/bluebottletree/

Beaird Glover grew up on a farm in rural Tennessee. He graduated from The Evergreen State College of Olympia, Washington, with a Bachelor of Arts in creative writing. He then moved to Southern California and wrote Secret Ciphers of the 1876 Presidential Election (Aegean Park Press). He has traveled extensively and lived in eleven of the United Sates, and Taipei and Buenos Aires. His poems have been published in the New York Quarterly and his chapbook of poetry was selected by the Austin Chronicle as one of the Top 10 Best of 1994. More recently, he acquired a Bachelor of Science degree from Long Island University in Brooklyn and has worked as a physician assistant. Beaird lives in New Orleans with his wife Kim and their cats.

Of Stars and Monsters (Of Light and Darkness #3)

PUBLISHER: PARLIAMENT HOUSE PRESS

Synopsis

After narrowly surviving a near-death experience from yet another showdown with Aiden Price and the Light, Charlotte awakens inside the forsaken, crumbling walls of the Regime Palace. Though she finds herself surrounded by her closest friends, she is conflicted by her feelings for the sudden absence of her Vampire guardian. Where has Francis taken Valek?  With new friend Nikolai there to console her, Charlotte cannot shake the undeniable chemistry she feels for this familiar stranger. But they are running out of time. Charlotte’s peculiar ailment will return, and she will die unless they are successful in finding a cure.  Charlotte, Nikolai, Sarah, and the rest of their tribe of misfits travel to the underbelly of Prague to search for Valek, but what they discover are secrets darker than they could have ever imagined. Charlotte must overcome her mortal limitations to save the life of the one she truly loves and escape the gates of Abelim with her throat intact in this enthralling, highly-anticipated third installment of the Of Light and Darkness Series.

Find Out About Other Books by Shayne Leighton at https://www.facebook.com/shayneleightonfans

With over a decade of experience in the entertainment and publishing industries, Shayne Leighton is a creative professional with edge and quirkiness. Her debut novel, Of Light and Darkness hit Amazon's coveted Top 100 overall bestsellers list once during the fall of 2015, and again in the summer of 2016, reaching the #4 spot. Having a background in film science, Shayne has produced book trailers and marketing materials for New York Times bestselling authors and major publishers such as Cynthia Leitich Smith (Tantalize, Candlewick Press), Alex Flinn (Towering, Harper Teen), and Kimberley Griffiths Little (When The Butterflies Came, Scholastic Press). She strives to be the Guillermo del Toro of the publishing industry, knowing what works visually and creatively to make stories a stunning experience that is visual, just as it is intellectual. She spends most of her time working on things that excite her, drinking coffee, traveling to the Czech Republic where she always finds new inspiration, and discovering hole-in- the-wall bookstores and coffee shops on her random adventures. Shayne is a Libra and a Ravenclaw. Her favorite book is The Night Circus (though soon it may be Six of Crows). Her wand is made out of Hazel wood with a Unicorn hair core 12 1/4" long and reasonably supple flexibility. Her patronus is a robin.

Auto-Buy Sci-Fi & Fantasy Authors

Auto-Buy Sci-Fi & Fantasy Authors

This week’s TOp 5 Wednesday prompt was a difficult one to narrow down. –which I think is a good thing! That means that there’s no shortage of great authors out there! Seeing how Fantasy is the genre I most commonly read, it’s easy to want to […]

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eARC Review: Our Dark Stars by Audrey Grey & Krystal Wade

eARC Review: Our Dark Stars by Audrey Grey & Krystal Wade

Both Talia and Will would rather get space-tossed than trust one another, but with the queen’s forces chasing them across the galaxy and the fate of both worlds hanging in the balance, they’ll forge the unlikeliest of alliances to survive. Partial synopsis provided by Goodreads. […]

Book Review: A Wrinkle In Time by Madeleine L’Engle

Book Review: A Wrinkle In Time by Madeleine L’Engle

Meg Murry and her friends become involved with unearthly strangers and a search for Meg's father, who has disappeared while engaged in secret work for the government.

Synopsis provided by Goodreads.

Book: A Wrinkle in Time

Series: Time Quintet

Author: Madeleine L’Engle

Publication Date: May 2007

Publisher: Square Fish (first published in 1962)

Page Count: 247

Format: Paperback

Genre: Children, Science Fiction, Classics

Cover Artist: Jennifer Browne

My Rating: ★★★½

Meg Murry has had a difficult time since her father’s disappearance. It’s been some time now since they last heard from him–no one knows where exactly where he went. People in the town say he ran off with some other woman, but Meg and the rest of her family just don’t believe that. With having both parents as scientists, Meg has the potential to do great things, but emotionally can’t handle the pressure.

One evening when a storm rages outside, Meg, her brother Charles, and Mrs. Murry can’t sleep so they have a late-night snack. They are visited by their new, eccentric neighbor named Mrs. Whatsit. She makes mention of a tesseract, and Mrs. Murry panics. Meg discovers that the term refers to a project her father had been working on before his disappearance. Curious, she and Charles, accompanied by schoolmate Calvin O’Keefe, make their way to an old “haunted” house where Mrs. Whatsit had taken up residence. There, the meet Mrs. Who and Mrs. Which, who promise to help the trio find Mr. Murry.

The three Mrs. W’s turn out to be supernatural beings who take the three through the universe by tesseract. They learn that it is a fifth-dimension in which space is folded and shortened. They travel first to Uriel, which is inhabited by Centaur-like beings, which end up being what the three Mrs. W’s are in disguise. The children discover that the entire universe is under attack by The Black Thing, and evil force wanting to take everything over. They travel to see the Happy Medium, who shows them that Earth is partially shrouded by this evil.

The children are sent to the planet of Camazotz, which has been taken over by The Black Thing, where it is said that their father is located. Upon arriving, they notice everything has a mechanical way of functioning, and learn that CENTRAL central intelligence has “hypnotic” powers over the world in a means of control. There, they confront the man with the red eyes, who has telepathic abilities and tries to control the three. In order to save their father, Charles gives in to the hypnosis of the man.

Meg and Calvin are able to find Mr. Murry and free him from the hell-like state he has been confined in for who knows how long. Trying to save her brother, Meg learns that Camazotz is ruled by a massive evil brain called “IT.” Threatened to be taken over by the telepathic abilities of IT, Mr. Murry tessers Meg, Calvin, and himself to the planet of Ixchel, which is inhabited by strange, furry beasts. Meg names one who cares for her Aunt Beast.

Mad that Mr. Murry left Charles behind, Meg realizes that she herself must go back to save him. She returns to Camazotz with gifts bestowed upon her by the Mrs. W’s. Because her bond with and love for her brother is so strong, she is able to break him away from the power of IT. They are all tessered back to Earth. Mrs. Whatsit tries to tell them that they need to go somewhere, but is unable to finish her sentence before she disappears.

A Wrinkle in Time (Time Quintet, #1)A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle
My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

Reading this book has been a long time coming for me. I heard of it a long time ago, but until recently, didn’t realize that it was written by a Christian author. Yes, I said Christian. So if that is a turn off to you, then this may not be the read for you as it has a strong Christian influence. I, however, hope that each and every person decides to pick up this read because it has something to offer anyone of any background. Messages being portrayed and those learned by the characters are too good to pass up.

World Building

A Wrinkle in Time is set initially on Earth, but the town which Meg lives isn’t named. From there, the plot jumps to different worlds including Uriel, Camazotz, and Ixchel. There isn’t a lot to say about the world building. We get a more defined image of Camazotz than anywhere, but a lot is left to the imagination. Each world varies immensely from one another. Uriel is a place of mythical beings and fantasy. Camazotz is technically-inclined, and Ixchel is straight from the belly of the Sci-Fi genre.

Pacing & Readability

While the plot is consistent, it is consistently slow-going. From the way I perceived it, when something did happen, it happened rapidly and without much explanation or walk-through. I felt that certain areas, especially the finale, could have been drawn out much more, and ended in not so “perfect” of a way. It seemed too easy…perhaps I am jaded.

Point-of-View & Characters

A Wrinkle in Time is told from the third-person point of view, but mainly hovers over Meg’s character. Being the main protagonist, we learn most about Meg’s character and get to know her the best. It’s a bit disappointing, because Charles Wallace is incredibly intriguing. Meg’s other brothers, Sandy and Dennys Murray, hardly get any page time but didn’t do much to add to the plot either. Meg’s parents also aren’t delved into with much depth, besides the fact that their work on the tesseract is extremely important.

Calvin, a schoolmate of Meg’s, comes from a large family where he isn’t noticed much. A jock at school, Meg hasn’t interacted with him much. But when she and Charles Wallace come across him at the haunted house, he tags along on their adventure. Throughout the book, Calvin becomes romantically interested in thirteen-year-old Meg, who reciprocates the feelings.

The Mrs. W’s are an interesting, mysterious lot. My first instinct was to think that Mrs. Who, Mrs. Which, and Mrs. Whatsit represented the Holy Trinity. The three are billions of years old, and they possess qualities of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. But reading further, it’s clear that they are only supernatural beings, like guardian angels to the trio, as they also give praise to God throughout.

IT, a massive disembodied brain, and The Black Thing, a black cloud that shrouds overtaken worlds are the antagonists in the story. Representing all things evil, IT desires to control all and enslave humanity to its bidding.

Major Themes

⇒ The dangers of Group Think:

People who love freedom will love this major theme throughout the book. When the trio arrives on Camazotz, they are confronted by a rather odd scene. Everything, and everyone is in sync. They move mechanically, identically. Then, a glitch occurs with a kid who loses control of his ball, and that is when the trio realizes the true danger that they are facing.

The idea that one mind controls all other is terrifying. There is no freedom of thought, individuality, or even faults. In this world where IT has taken over, a nearly perfect dictatorship occurs, where no one can deviate from IT’s influence in any way.

⇒ Love conquers all:

As always, love is the answer. Not cutesy love, but deep, selfless, and sacrificial love, which Meg demonstrates when she returns to Camazotz to free her brother Charles from IT’s influence.

⇒ Good vs. Evil – Parallels to Christianity:

The theme of good vs. evil is obviously an overarching theme. The Mrs. W’s are the forces of good, guiding Meg and the gang through strategies to overcome the forces of evil. However, the guardians cannot defeat the evil themselves and require Meg, her brother, and Calvin to step up in order to overcome evil. References to God and the Bible are prevalent throughout this book and serve as inspirational, motivational, and instructional influences for the characters.

⇒ Interactions of science and faith:

Yes, you read that right. In a world that is constantly trying to prove that these to subjects don’t belong in the same realm, L’Engle shows that they do, and they can. Inspired by her studies in quantum physics, she created a science-infused story combined with Christianity.


Overall Feelings

Things that I liked:

⇒ The overall creativity.
⇒ There is room allowed for imagination (the story is not overtold!)
⇒ The meaning and purpose.

Things that I didn’t like:

⇒ Meg’s overall disposition and unlikeability.
⇒ The pacing, and lack of some detail in important areas (as in the world building.)
⇒ Calvin and Meg’s insta-lovey relationship.

I’m glad I took so long to getting around to this review. When I initially finished reading this book, I wasn’t blown away by it. However, now that I’ve had a lot of time for it to stew, I find that I appreciate it more and more…and more. L’Engel’s perceptiveness of the world is obvious and majorly contributes to the overall awesomeness that A Wrinkle in Time reflects.

I read another of L’Engle’s books last year, Walking on Water: Reflections on Faith and Art where she discusses her artistic expression and how it coincides with her faith. In that book, she talks about her journey (because it took a while to get this series published) with A Wrinkle in Time. Majority of the people who turned her down thought the series was too strange. However, (and I agree with L’Engle) I believe it’s because this book was misunderstood. There is true brilliance behind this concept, that it may just take the freedom of a child’s mind to grasp. As adults, our thoughts become adulterated with perceptions that we miss the grander scheme of things. There were times when I was wishing for more detail, then I realized that that’s the point: we are supposed to use our imagination when we read. The main reason I gave this book only three and a half stars was because I wasn’t a big fan of Meg as the protagonist, and found her quite irritating. Despite that fact, I really enjoyed the overall concept and would recommend this read to anyone.

Vulgarity: None.
Sexual content: None.
Violence: None.

View all my reviews

eARC Mini Review: Heart of Iron by Ashley Poston

eARC Mini Review: Heart of Iron by Ashley Poston

Release date Feburary 27, 2018! Seventeen-year-old Ana is a scoundrel by nurture and an outlaw by nature. Found as a child drifting through space with a sentient android called D09, Ana was saved by a fearsome space captain and the grizzled crew she now calls […]

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Book Review: Finding Jade by Mary Jennifer Payne

Book Review: Finding Jade by Mary Jennifer Payne

The year is 2030, and climate change is making life on Earth more challenging. Fourteen-year-old Jasmine Guzman is struggling to come to terms with the abduction of her twin sister, Jade, and her mother’s illness. Things go from bad to worse when a series of […]

Book Review: Gilded Cage by Vic James

Book Review: Gilded Cage by Vic James

In modern-day Britain, magic users control everything: wealth, politics, power—and you. If you’re not one of the ultimate one-percenters—the magical elite—you owe them ten years of service. Do those years when you’re old, and you’ll never get through them. Do them young, and you’ll never get over them.

Partial synopsis provided by Goodreads.

Book: Gilded Cage

Series: Dark Gifts #1

Author: Vic James

Publication Date: February 14, 2017

Publisher: Del Ray

Page Count: 368

Format: ebook

Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction, Dystopia

Cover Artist: Faceout Studio, Tim Green

My Rating: ★★★½

Gilded Cage (Dark Gifts #1)Gilded Cage by Vic James
My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

Ignorance bred fear, as Father was fond of saying, and fear bred obedience.

My relationship with this read was strange. While I thought the concept was brilliant, I had a tough time actually getting into Gilded Cage until more towards the end.

Reading the synopsis, my eyes quite literally sparkled.

description

The setting sounded (and was) absolutely amazing. Well, not amazing considering there is apparent oppression of a certain populace. I mean–amazing as in, what a brilliant idea for a dystopian novel!? Getting into the book, however, proved to be difficult throughout the first half. Perhaps it was due to the more explanatory nature in tone in order to set the stage for the remainder of the story? I’m not really sure.

While this book is undoubtedly dystopian, it naturally reads like any historical fiction, which may be a part of my overall confusion and inability to immerse myself into it further. Technically being a science fiction read, this book simply didn’t feel like one, which, by no means is a bad thing! Perhaps because this book crosses some boundaries, it rests at a place higher than my categorical mind can comprehend because I’ve been conditioned to think that “Sci-fi” and/or “dystopia” mostly means futuristic. Gilded Cage certainly breaks the mold that has been determined by most other books in this genre.

The world is set in modern-day Britain, but it doesn’t feel like it. Society is divided into two parts: aristocracy, and commoners. The aristocrats have a major advantage on their side: they can use magic. Because of this, they have assumed positions of power and privilege. Anyone outside of the elite group of magic users must spend ten years in servitude. These unfortunate souls get to pick when they serve, but nothing can get them out of it until after ten grueling years and then their freedom is granted. Nice, huh? Whether it be for a wealthy family, or in the slums, wherever one is placed, he or she must go.

The divide in lifestyles is immediately exemplified by the vast differences between the Hadley family, and the Jardine family. The Hadleys, being of non-noble birth, are commissioned to work for the wealthy and powerful Jardine family. Through a debacle, Luke is placed in one of the factory slums instead and forced to separate for his family.

“There aren’t many that see this place for what it truly is. Even fewer who realize that the slavedays aren’t an inevitable part of normal life, but a brutal violation of freedom and dignity, perpetrated by the Equals.”

Having a vastly different experience from the rest of his family in the factory city, Luke uncovers a populace of people desiring change in the system. The ability to use magic shouldn’t be the sole reason why certain people held high places in society. Seeing the amount of injustice most people must go through for these elite individuals, Luke decides to partake in a diverse and secret group pushing to make a change in the system.

This plot was thick and complex. Even so, the way things took place felt natural and possible with the world created here. In this way, this plot was effortless and functioned well. On the other side, because there was so much happening throughout this story, it was difficult to follow at times. Many characters are cast for variously sized parts, making it difficult to keep track of who’s who and what their purpose is. However, the climax and end of this book does a good job to wrap up the overall plot and clarify the functionality of some people throughout.

I think in general that this book will garner mixed reviews. While the content is original and with depth, the material doesn’t present the “feel-good” atmosphere many readers are looking for. Oppression, slavery, and mistreatment of humans aren’t light topics to discuss, nor should be glanced over lightly. Despite this fact, I appreciated the author’s ingenuity with the subject-matter and creating a world that is dynamic and believable.

Vulgarity: 30 words total (from what I counted – this could be slightly off.) Sexual content: Minimal – some kissing. Violence: At least moderate. Some of the scenes were rather graphic.

View all my reviews

“Ignorance bred fear, as Father was fond of saying, and fear bred obedience.”

Mini Book Review: Chronicles of Steele: Raven Episode 4 by Pauline Creeden

Mini Book Review: Chronicles of Steele: Raven Episode 4 by Pauline Creeden

Peace and safety…a promise often made but seldom kept. Can Raven trust that anyone will be able to protect the young baron as she has? Synopsis provided by Goodreads. Book: Raven Episode 4 Series: Chronicles of Steele Author: Pauline Creeden Publication Date: October 4, 2014 […]

Mini Book Review: Chronicles of Steel: Raven Episode 3 by Pauline Creeden

Mini Book Review: Chronicles of Steel: Raven Episode 3 by Pauline Creeden

Episode 3 of a 4 part Steampunk Fantasy set in an alternate universe. A tenuous alliance and the hunt for a kidnapper. Can sworn enemies become allies? Synopsis provided by Goodreads. Book: Raven Episode 3 Series: Chronicles of Steele Author: Pauline Creeden Publication Date: September […]

Books I Disliked But Love To Discuss!

Books I Disliked But Love To Discuss!

Andddd we're back with another Top 5 Wednesday! And this one may be filled with a little bit of...
Regret?
Remorse?
Ridicule?
I guess we'll find out...

Let’s be honest here, folks, we’re all here to have a little fun and discuss some books! (What’s better than that!?) We all have books that we absolutely adore, and absolutely dislike. This list will encompass books that I have a hankering to talk about in regards to the latter. So! Feel free to comment and let me know what you think about the books I’ve designated to my “dislike” shelf.

Disclaimer: Nothing that is said here is against the author. I'm only critiquing the book!

Caraval by Stephanie Garber
My Rating: 2.5 stars

Don't disown me already!

I see you giving me the stink eye, there! Yes, I'm well aware that I have an unpopular opinion of this book. While I've seen people literally gush over the writing in this book, I absolutely struggled to complete it because of the writing. The use of random colors to explain emotions was so off! As a person who loves the arts, these random expressions of feelings made the characters disjointed and frankly, not making sense.

Not only did the color thing bother me, I felt that the writing was redundant and...could have been edited better. So many times I found the text ruminating over the same point, just saying it in different ways. If you know me, then you know I'm not one for redundancy. So, this may just be because I have a pet peeve with it.

The concept of the story was quite intriguing. However, the execution wasn't smooth, and didn't always string together with coherence. I'll still read the sequel, Renegade, but I'm not sure what my reaction will be. Hopefully it will be a better one!

The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer

Again, please don't abandon me here...

This series has some serious super fans, yet, I'm not one of them. While I thought the premise of this book was fantastic, the characters fell flat, and it became too drawn out, and predictable for me.

The only character I really liked and felt had some real "skin" to her was Scarlet. The rest, mainly Cress, were infuriating for different reasons; Cinder, because she was insta-everything; Winter because she just needed more to her; Cress because of her immaturity. Yes, I do know this is a YA series. I'm glad it is, too! It was rather clean, and didn't have a bad plot. However, it just wasn't up to high bar that everyone had been saying it was at for me.

Burning Glass by Kathryn Purdie
My Rating: 1 star

I went into this book with high hopes. I thought the synopsis sounded promising. However, the further I went into this read, my dislike for it grew.

I really think this book missed a massive opportunity. The main focus is on a girl who can feel other people's feelings. Specific people with this ability often-times resort to self-harm in order to feel a "release" from the overwhelming emotions within them. So...basically they are cutting. Some girls even wind up dead because they go to far with this form of "pain management."

When I came across this in the beginning, my teeth were set on edge. I kept thinking that there better be some reconciliation, or some teaching/learning points that didn't approve of this behavior. BUT THERE WASN'T! I was literally gasping in the end. This book opened a huge can of worms and...didn't care that it had in the end. You can see a further breakdown of this book in my review by clicking on the cover image.

Ugh. My heart broke with disappointment after reading this book.

The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood
My Rating: DNF (no star-rating)

I don't have much good to say about this book. While this is a feminists' favorite (or so it seems), it's not one of mine.

I think some people may be shocked to hear that I'm a female, but I'm not a feminist. At least, not a feminist in the form that it has been established as in today's era. OF COURSE I believe in equal rights as men. However, this book is a strand of feminist propaganda that I just don't agree with. Not only that, it takes verses from the Bible, misrepresents them, and throws it back in the face of the reader in a context which is completely wrong. Not only does my womanhood feel attacked, so do my beliefs.
I found the premise, characters, and just about everything to be repulsive. Especially now that it is a TV series, it's a constant hot-topic. My dislike for it won't stop me from discussing it though!

Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy

While this is on this list, I have a little confession to make. I don't remember a whole lot about this book. I remember the premise, just not the intimate details.

What I do remember is how much I disliked it, and how I kept wondering how it was even considered to be a classic? The premise revolves around adultery, which, I personally don't want to read about. Enough said.

That list was more difficult to comprise than I expected. It's easy to rant out loud, but putting words on paper isn't always so simple. Where there any books listed here that you agree with? Were there any that you rebuttle with your entire being? Let me know in the comments below! I'd love to discuss more with you!

Mini Book Review: Chronicles of Steel: Raven Episode 2 by Pauline Creeden

Mini Book Review: Chronicles of Steel: Raven Episode 2 by Pauline Creeden

Episode 2 of a 4 part Steampunk Fantasy set in an alternate universe. For Captain Jack Grant, the hunt has just begun. Can he capture the elusive Raven Steele, or will she slip through his grasp? As both sides take on new alliances, they will […]

Book Review: Zenith by Sasha Alsberg & Lindsay Cummings

Book Review: Zenith by Sasha Alsberg & Lindsay Cummings

But when a routine mission goes awry, the Marauder’s all-girl crew is tested as they find themselves in a treacherous situation and at the mercy of a sadistic bounty hunter from Andi’s past. Partial synopsis provided by Goodreads. Book: Zenith Series: The Androma Saga Author: […]

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Book Review: The Evaporation of Sofi Snow by Mary Weber

Book Review: The Evaporation of Sofi Snow by Mary Weber

Ever since the Delonese ice-planet arrived eleven years ago, Sofi's dreams have been vivid. Alien. In a system where Earth's corporations rule in place of governments and the humanoid race orbiting the moon are allies, her only constant has been her younger brother, Shilo.

Partial synopsis provided by Goodreads.

Book: The Evaporation of Sofi Snow

Series: The Evaporation of Sofi Snow #1

Author: Mary Weber

Publication Date: June 6, 2017

Publisher: Thomas Nelson

Page Count: 20 CDs

Format: Audiobook

Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction, Dystopia

Cover Artist:

My Rating: ★★½

The Evaporation of Sofi SnowThe Evaporation of Sofi Snow by Mary Weber
My rating: 2.5 of 5 stars

I’ve seen a lot of reviews on this book about how confusing it was, and how readers felt blindsided by the plotline. I’d like to highlight that I had similar feelings, especially the further the plot advanced.

description

Before I get into my review, here’s a short synopsis:

Set in a futuristic world, post-World War, corporations in alliance with an alien race orbiting Earth govern the world. Children of one of the heads of the Earth’s Fantasy Fighting arena, Sofi and her brother Shilo are forced to compete in the bloody virtually Colosseum-style games.

A techie, Sofi operates the game behind the scenes, navigating her brother through the physical portion. When the games go awry, and a bomb decimates the battlefield, Shilo goes missing. Sofi believes he is still alive, while everyone else doesn’t. Shilo’s data is wiped clean and there are no trails to figure out where he’s gone. But Sofi has vivid dreams, giving her glimpses to where Shilo may have been taken to; the ice planet of the Delonese.

Needing help from a foreign ambassador to get to the planet, Sofi must enlist Miguel’s help, who is not only an ambassador but an ex-lover. Tensions high, the two must figure out how to get past their past in order to find Shilo, and to escape the blackmailers hunting Miguel.


This book took a turn that I was completely not expecting. I don’t necessarily mean that in a bad way, however, the way the book began and the way that it ended didn’t flow well. I’d like some more clarification and answers to some of the big questions enticing the reader throughout! There is no doubt that the author took a stab at creating a creative plot. However, without necessary flow, it makes it a confusing read. Part of the frustration comes from the “romance,” rather, past-romance between Sofi Snow and Miguel that keeps trying to take center stage when it needs to stop trying so hard. Their strained relationship creates more tension for the plot, but also creates another backstory that isn’t hashed out well, if at all.

Now, I know this story takes a lot from The Hunger Games trilogy.

description

And that was a huge drawback for me especially in the first quarter of the book. While Sofi doesn’t necessarily remind me of Katniss, Miguel is a spitting image of Finnick in the way he acts and obtains information from those around him. Sofi, too, is very promiscuous (and I’m not sure why she needs to be) from what seems to be out of her own satisfaction. Despite these resemblances, I thought the idea that the world post WWIV being run by massive corporations was creative, and even possible. I like when futuristic worlds are created to be tangible, not just fantastic. Considering how much pull some companies and industries have in today’s world, it creates the idea that something like this could happen.

The interesting part is the addition and appearance of the alien Delonese race and their planet which rotates the Earth like an extra moon. They align themselves with the governing parties to become allies of Earth. Despite this, their foreign appearance doesn’t really come on the scene until later in the story.

As the plot moves on, the similarities to The Hunger Games are fewer and further between. The biggest draw-back in the world building is the physical description of it—because there hardly any. The story jumps from scene to scene, with little description given to the reader about where they were and are. Moving from scene to scene gave me vertigo.

The characters themselves are unrealistic. Both Sofi and Miguel are situated in roles that don’t seem realistic for teenagers to be in. Perhaps Sofi could be some tech genius—they are out there. But Miguel? He’s a foreign diplomat at the age of sixteen, already highly esteemed, as well as a well-known playboy. At sixteen. I don’t know about you, but I don’t think it’s plausible.

The last 80% of this book is where I started to get interested. However, I found its finale to be nondescript, rushed, and again, without explanation. How does Sofi really evaporate? Yeah, I’m not sure either. I hope we find out in the sequel. If I don’t get some answers there, then I won’t continue on with the series if more is planned to come.

These numbers may not be 100% accurate, as I took notes anytime I came across something.

Vulgarity: Minimal.
Sexual Content: Nothing explicit, yet “sleeping around” is talked about a lot.
Violence: Moderate – there are the “games” in the beginning where several characters die in rather gross ways. Although they aren’t graphic, the implications are there.

View all my reviews


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