Publisher: Balzer & Bray
Genre: Science Fiction and Young Adult
Release Date: January 21, 2014
Pages: 432 (Hardcover)
Of the various star systems that make up the Confederation, most lie thousands of light-years from First Earth-and out here, no one is free. The agencies that govern the Confederation are as corrupt as the crime bosses who patrol it, and power is held by anyone with enough greed and ruthlessness to claim it. That power is derived from one thing: metatech, the devices that allow people to travel great distances faster than the speed of light.
Jeth Seagrave and his crew of teenage mercenaries have survived in this world by stealing unsecured metatech, and they’re damn good at it. Jeth doesn’t care about the politics or the law; all he cares about is earning enough money to buy back his parents’ ship, Avalon, from his crime-boss employer and getting himself and his sister, Lizzie, the heck out of Dodge. But when Jeth finds himself in possession of information that both the crime bosses and the government are willing to kill for, he is going to have to ask himself how far he’ll go to get the freedom he’s wanted for so long.
First of all, I would like to thank the publisher, Balzer & Bray for giving me an ARC of this book to review. Thank you so much! Really appreciate it! All right, now for my review.
I have always had a hard time with sci-fi novels, and this one is no different. The book starts off beautifully and kept my attention, but during the middle, the whole story falters and becomes very boring. This also happens for most, if not all of the characters. Their sneaky ways come to a screeching halt, and they are so bland that I would’ve rather eat original oatmeal. And I hate original oatmeal.
The Malleus Shades are known as one of the best thieves in the galaxy, but all I pictured while reading about them was this:
The Malleus Shades fall again and again fall for traps that logical people (me! For crying out loud I am so oblivious, but I saw all of those traps from miles away!) would easily spot. The fact that they’re teenagers shouldn’t be an excuse since they’ve been doing this shit for years. Their leader, Jeth, reminds me of this guy:
They have some many things in common. 1. They both have an intense, menacing aura around them. 2. They both like someone they shouldn’t. 3. THEY NEVER TALK. THEY SAY A FEW FUCKING LINES AND THEN THAT’S FUCKING IT. UGH. The dialogue is a bit tough since Jeth NEVER talks and most things are just in his head. There are certain parts in the novel where there are long information-dumps (near the end, don’t worry) that, albeit better done than other books, is still annoying.
But, I have to give Mindee Arnett props for the amazing world building. The planets that the crew visit are described in lovely detail that left just the right amount to readers to imagine. I have a hard time connecting with sci-fi books and even worse time when they’re written in the third person yet Arnett is talented. She writes beautifully in both first and third person, and I had almost no problems with the writing.
All in all, Avalon is a good book. The romance doesn’t take over the story (though it is a bit annoying), and there’s a nice twist in the book that had me eagerly flipping the pages. I recommend this book to anyone who loves sci-fi stories that’s a bit different and don’t mind bland characters. I can’t wait to read the next book mostly because of Cora and hopefully the characters get better. Especially Jeth because that boy says like, two lines per chapter. I’m not even kidding.
For quotes from this book, click here.