** Special Review**
Genre: Futuristic Sci/Fi Thriller
# of Pages: 259
Avalon wakes up in her cryochamber and learns that she has been frozen for 100 years. She also remembers that when her father predicted that a meteor would strike earth, and completely decimate life as they knew it, only 5000 people were allowed into the underground habitat that was created to sustain life until humans could return to the surface again. Since such a limited number of people were allowed into the habitat only younger people were allowed and Avalon was forced to say goodbye to her beloved father. Upon reawakening, Avalon notices some strange happenings in the habitat including that some people seem to be getting deathly ill when they are supposed to be immune from such diseases due to a vaccine everyone receives once they come out of the cryochamber. Who could be behind this? Whom can she trust in this new place surrounded by people she does not know? Should she speak up and ask questions or simply take the safer route and follow the rules?
Fans of futuristic novels such as The Testing, Alive, Across the Universe, or Red Rising will enjoy this title. The plot moves quickly and the characters are interesting and engaging. There is some resolution, but the ending definitely leaves room for a sequel. While some aspects in the story can be found in other similar titles, there is enough originality here to draw readers in and make them want to know what’s going on in this strange habitat controlled by a few people. Recommended.
Genre: Science Fiction
# of Pages: 372
Micheline is the youngest descendant in the Helsing blood line. Her and her friends work catching ghosts and other supernatural beings. They each have special talents that allow them to track down and properly extinguish these harmful beings. At the beginning of the story they are called to a particularly heinous scene where a ghost has killed people in a hospital. They are supposed to wait for backup, but Micheline decides to go in alone and her team is forced to follow. They are attacked by this being and contract a rare disease known as soulchain. Soulchain will kill them if they do not kill the creature that infected them in seven days time. Their parents wish them to lay low while they hunt the dangerous ghost, but Micheline and her team know it is them who must hunt it down to save their lives.
The plot is much more intriguing here than most readers will expect. There is a lot of backstory on Micheline’s family and how her and her father came to be so estranged. There is a fair amount of suspense and plot twists that keep the story active and fast paced. The characters are interesting as their talents and personalities are revealed. Plus, in this world no one is really ever safe, which makes the suspense all the more real. Recommended for fans of science fiction and suspense.
Genre: Fantasy/Science Fiction
In this final and entralling conclusion to the Lunar Chronicles series, Cinder is still desperately trying to stop Levana from taking control of Earth and her beloved Kai. Thorne, Cress, Scarlet, Wolf, Jacin, and Winter are all there to help her succeed, but it won’t be easy. Due to the fact that Levana has unbelievable gifts in mind manipulation and often forces her enemies to do things they would never do on their own it is often difficult to tell whom they can trust in their quest to stop her evil plans. The characters try hard not to stoop to Levana’s levels, which is amazing considering everything they go through in the story. Fans will not be disappointed with the ending to this exciting adventure.
Genre: Science Fiction/Fantasy
# of Pages: 400
Darrow is a “red” in a caste society where reds work below the surface of Mars trying to terraform the planet for other life forms to eventually come live on the surface. The work is hard and thankless and they are compensated with hardly any food and poor living conditions. Darrow’s wife, Eo, believes there is more than the “golds” are telling them and thinks they should revolt in order to get to the truth. Darrow lost his father when he peacefully protested their work conditions and does not want to lose anyone else. When Eo defies the golds anyway, she is publicly hanged and Darrow refuses to let this go. He eventually gets a makeover to make him look like a gold so that he can infiltrate the golds to take them down from the inside. He learns that the golds have been hiding a lot about the actual development of the planet Mars in order to keep them in a lowly position. He vows revenge for his entire family who are starving and slaving so that others can grow fat and rich. Will they discover he is not truly a gold? Will he find any compassion for the golds he has come to despise?
Fans of futuristic fiction will enjoy this title because there is a lot of violence and colorful characters. The story eventually evolves into a competition similar to the Hunger Games that will keep even reluctant readers’ attention. Many questions are left unanswered and there is currently one sequel already. While it is similar to other titles out there it is unique enough that it is finding an audience of supporters who desperately want to know what will happen to Darrow.
Genre: Sci/Fi, Futuristic
# of Pages: 345
Em wakes up with a shooting pain in her neck and believes she’s being attacked by a snake. She quickly realizes she’s trapped in a dark box and must fight her way out. When she does, she sees she is in a room full of what look like coffins, which is what she just forced her way out of. She begins to hear screaming in a nearby coffin and helps another girl break free. They both think they are 12, but they look much older than that. They have no memories and have to look at the name plates on their coffins to discover what their names are. Eventually, they find there are others nearby, but no one knows where they are or how they can get out. Em finds herself the leader of these kids and shocks herself when she discovers she feels confident she can lead them out of this nightmare.
This futuristic story introduces several characters and most of them are developed well enough that you can see their motivations, strengths, and weaknesses. There is a fair amount of violence as these kids have to fight their way through one obstacle after another. The plot carries many interesting twists, but there is still a lot more of this story to tell which I can only imagine will continue with the next installment. Fans of James Dashner will enjoy this title.
Genre: Science Fiction
# of Pages: 374
Lilac is the famous daughter of a prestigious businessman who owns the amazing spaceship, Icarus, that she is currently traveling on. Tarver is a decorated war hero also traveling on the luxury spaceship, but his experience is much different. When he tries to speak to Lilac in public she makes it very clear that he is beneath her in every way, but shortly after their public altercation the ship is suddenly pulled out of hyperspace. They both end up in the same escape pod and it’s Lilac’s quick mechanical skills that free their pod before the ship crashes. They land on what appears to be an uninhabited planet. In order to survive they must trek across the planet in search of food, people, or a means to communicate. The two are very different and do not get along well at first, but over time they must come together for the goal of survival. Eventually, they start to get close and wonder if they even want to leave their own private planet, but then mysterious things start happening. They hear voices and see hallucinations, among other things. What is this place and can it in fact hurt them?
This sci/fi adventure is very exciting with many twists in the plot. The characters and setting are well developed and interesting, but the ending may confuse some readers. The pacing seems uneven at times too, with parts moving slowly and then a lot happening at once. Fans of this genre will enjoy, but most others will pass on this one.
Genre: Science Fiction
# of Pages: 466
Ella lives with her mother in the new city that was built after a major world war. Her mother is famous for inventing the technology of reveries, which enable people to go into a sleep where they can relive their happiest memories. Her father was also a brilliant scientist who worked on finding a cure for the terrible disease her mother had before he was suddenly and tragically killed in a lab accident. Ella’s mom has lived longer than anyone else with this disease, but she’s getting weaker and Ella knows it is only a matter of time before she’s on her own. Her mother’s childhood friend helps run the reverie spa and one day informs Ella that she needs to go meet with the president of their newly established government. The President informs her that she feels rebellious rumblings and will do whatever it takes to stop another war, including altering the memories of the rebels. Ella isn’t sure about using her mother’s technology that way and goes to her father’s grave to think it over when a teenage boy comes up and acts like she should know him. He knows things about her family and seems genuinely hurt she doesn’t know him. Is it possible someone is using her mother’s technology to alter her memories? If that’s true, what else doesn’t she remember?
This thrilling sci-fi novel takes many plot twists to get to the final conclusion. Some readers may find the constant revelations start to get a little confusing at times as they happen quickly near the end. As Ella’s parents were both genius scientists there are numerous referrals to science and technology in the ultimate resolution of the plot. The characters are very memorable and engaging, especially considering some of them aren’t in the story that much. The romance between Ella and the boy is well described and a believable source of angst for Ella, but isn’t dwelled upon too much in a book that has a lot going on. Fans of sci fi will devour this title.