Reading Level: Young Adult
Genre: Science Fiction/Post-Apocalyptic
Length: 352 pages
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Release Date: June 6, 2017
Stand Alone or Series: Stand Alone
Source: ARC from Amazon Vine program
Rating: 2/5 stars
“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. As an online gamer, Sofi battles behind the scenes of Earth’s Fantasy Fighting arena where Shilo is forced to compete in a mix of real and virtual blood sport. But when a bomb takes out a quarter of the arena, Sofi’s the only one who believes Shilo survived. She has dreams of him. And she’s convinced he’s been taken to the ice-planet.
Except no one but ambassadors are allowed there.
For Miguel–Earth’s charming young playboy–the games are of a different sort. As Ambassador to the Delonese, his career has been built on trading secrets and seduction. Until the Fantasy Fight’s bomb goes off. Now the tables have turned and he’s a target for blackmail. The game is simple: Help the blackmailers, or lose more than anyone can fathom, or Earth can afford.”
I got this book from the Amazon Vine program to review. This ended up being a did not finish (DNF) for me. I do try to always complete books I get for review, but this is the third time I’ve picked up this book and tried to struggle through it and I give up…I think that says a lot about the book. I got about 150 pages into the book before finally giving up.
This book is some sort of post-apocalyptic/gamer/cyberpunk/dystopia themed novel. I had a lot of issues with the beginning where we are thrown into a bizarre and complex sort of (but not quite) war game. It’s not exactly Hunger Games because kids aren’t actually killed but they are severely maimed in the game.
This was a struggle for me to get through because not only is it a complex game, but it’s not explained very well. It was very hard for me to visualize what was going on here. In addition the writing is choppy and doesn’t flow well and I really struggled to stay focused on the book. I had to really concentrate and focus to read and understand this story; the writing style just didn’t work well for me.
I stuck with it for over 100 pages which was enough for me to get out of the initial game/battle scene but things just got weirder and harder to follow after that. We have vying corporations, a hateful or just neglectful mother, hackers, and an alien species that is dominating humans. It’s a lot going on and it’s all explained and presented to the reader in a very confusing, boring, and unintelligible way.
As I mentioned this is my third time trying to make my way through this book and I just give up. I feel like I gave it a far shot but this story is just too much of a mess and too boring to get through. I generally love these sci-fi cyberpunk types of stories but this one really fell short for me.
Overall this was really not my thing; mainly because the writing was so disjointed and I had a hard time picturing all the complex games and political situations presented to the reader. I wouldn’t recommend. I haven’t read Mary Weber before so if you are a fan of her previous works maybe check this out; otherwise I would skip it.