What I read this month and what I would like to read next

December is almost over so I decided that it was the time to show the things I managed (or not) to read. This month I finished ten novels, one short story and I dropped one book.

Here are all of the books that I finished :

This was a really great reading month so picking favorites is going to be hard. The ones that really stood out to me probably were those books :

 

Those two books are now two of my favorite books ever.

However, I have to make an honorable for those three books, that were also really fun and interesting reads :

DNF (Did Not Finish)

I DNF’d one book which was The Red Knight by Miles Cameron. I decided as an early resolution to drop books that I don’t enjoy. Life is too short to read bad books. I forced myself to read it half of it but the I realized that I was skimming every battle scenes (and they are a lot). This book has way to many POV that were not necessary for the story and I did not like at all how the women were portrayed. It was not very original because it followed the very classical Man vs the Wild trope. I found myself being a lot more interested by the bad guys than the ones we are supposed to like and since it is planned to be a five books series and that each book out is pretty massive, I decided to stop there.

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Short fiction

I read only one short story this month which was Oral Argument by Kim Stanley Robinson. It was the first KSR work that I read and I really enjoyed it. It was a very short piece about the possible economic consequences of a promising invention : a tatoo-ink that would enables human to do photosynthesis. I think that the idea was great and that the possible consequences were very well thought out. I would have liked it to be a little longer but it is always my problem with short fiction. This work was published by Tor.com and you can read it for free here.

What I plan on reading next

I don’t know for sure of what I am going to read but I would like to get to The Bonehunters by Steven Erikson which is the sixth tale of the Malazan Book of the Fallen series, the only problem I have with this book is its lenght, I don’t mind 500+ pages books but this one is more than 1200 pages long… I would also like to read Only the Stones Survive by Morgan Llewyn and The Grace of Kings by Ken Liu that I received from Netgalley. Also, I would like to reread Hyperion by Dan Simmons. I have other books in mind but if I only managed to get to those mentionned, I would still be happy.

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The Shards of Heaven by Michael Livingston

“We’re not meant to know the mind of the gods.”

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I received this book from Netgalley in exhange for an honest review.

This book is set just after the assassination of Julius Caesar and follows its numerous consequences of the Roman Empire, now divided between Octavian, Caesar’s adopted son and Caesarion, Caesar’s ‘real’ son. This rivalry is going to shatter the Empire and pull it into a giant civil war taking place from Rome to Alexandria and the coasts of Greece.

The book follows a cast of mainly five characters, each very different yet incredibly relatable. We meet Caesarion, Caesar’s son trying to protect his family from the wrath of Octavian, Cleopatra Selene, Cleopatra’s daughter with Mark Anthony, a ten years old smarter and braver than almost everyone, Juba, a Numerian prince adopted by Caesar whose trying to free his country no matter what, Lucius Vorenus, a Roman veteran now working for Mark Anthony and finally Didymus a Greek scholar whose loyalties are uncertain.

Even if the cast of characters is pretty big for 400 pages book, we learn to know them all incredibly well. All the characters are well fleshed out and multidimensional. Livingstone’s writing style allow us to be pulled into a fascinating period of history without any confusion while adding elements of fantasy with magical artefacts. The whole mythology surrounding the Shards was incredibly interesting to read about and never felt heavy and difficult to understand. I read this book in three days and I never wanted to put in down, one time I stayed up pretty late because I was so engrossed that I did not see the time fly at all.

“It’s true that the responsibility of knowledge is not something to be taken lightly. Not everyone is ready for the truth about their world, or even about themselves. But it doesn’t follow that the truth should be hidden forever […] I think there may be times when the circle of those asked to harbor the truth must grow, for the greater good.”

As a child, I was always fascinated by the Roman Empire and the Ancient Egypt and reading about this period of history again made me really happy. The only downside to that was that I already knew important plot point since if you don’t count the elements of fantasy, the book remains very close to what we know of the history of this time. But we can’t really blame the author for doing his work since he’s an historian. 😉

 

The Shards of Heaven was a great read and if the idea of reading about the Roman Empire with magic artefacts interest you, you’ll probably love this !

Highly recommended.

★★★★

 

All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

“Don’t you want to be alive before you die?”

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  All the Light We Cannot See is a historical/literary fiction book set in France and Germany during WWII. It follows two characters : Marie-Laure a French blind girl living in Paris then in St Malo during the war and Werner a sixteen years old German soldier who has to find radio transmissions made by the French Resistance.

This book is fairly well known and won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction in 2015. It was the first time I read a Pulizter winner since I usually tend to be more interested by Man Booker’s winner and shortlist.

I was really interested in this book because I liked the idea of a book set in French written by a non-French author since I always find it interesting to see the ways culture and events may be seen from a foreign point of view.

However, I found myself a lot more interested by Werner’s chapters than Marie-Laure’s because they allowed me to learn a lot about German propaganda and how much education can influence minds. Marie-Laure’s chapters were not bad, it was just than being French and a Parisian mean that I already knew the majority of what happened in France. Also WWII being such an important event means that we had a lot of lectures on it in middleschool and in highschool and so I find her chapters a little redundant of those. For Werner, I also already knew about propaganda and stuff but reading about it made it seems more real in my eyes.  Still, what I found the more interesting wasn’t really his life but more his thoughts about the things he has to do to protect his family and his friends.

“Your problem, Werner,” says Frederick, “is that you still believe you own your life.”

As for the writing style, I have to say that I did not find to be as amazing as everyone seems to think. Some quotes were really beautiful but some paragraphs were a little bit choppy because of the extremely short sentences. The structure of this book was peculiar because the book was divided in very long chapters (or parts) made of very tiny scenes that switch from character to character. Some scenes were less than a page and the longest was six pages long. At first, it was disconcerting but after a while, I got used to it.

Overall, I enjoyed this and I am glad to have read it. The characters were well fleshed out and they were a great way to try to imagine what living in this time could have been like for the common inhabitants. It also allowed me to have interesting discussions about WWII with my parents. Also, nw my mother wants to read it so it’s pretty cool 🙂

“You know the greatest lesson of history? It’s that history is whatever the victors say it is. That’s the lesson. Whoever wins, that’s who decides the history. We act in our own self-interest. Of course we do. Name me a person or a nation who does not. The trick is figuring out where your interests are.”

I would recommend this if you are interested by this period of history or if you want to start reading literary fiction because this was probably the easiest books that I’ve read in this genre in terms of difficulty of language.

★★★1/2

Caliban’s War by James S.A. Corey

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Caliban’s War is the second book in the Expanse series. You can read my review of the first book, Leviathan Wakes here.

I really enjoyed the first book of this series, I thought it was a fun and fast-paced space opera and that it was a solid first installment in what is supposed to be a nine books series.

As much as I liked Levianthan Wakes, Caliban’s War takes the story on a higher level. First of all, the cast of characters grows, we are now following four very different characters instead of two. The first one remains Jim Holden, the new Captain of the Rocinante who now works for the OPA. The other three characters are all introduced in this book. Praxidilike, or Prax, is a biologist working on Ganymede, however his life is going to be shattered the moment his planet is attacked by a mysterious monster and someone kidnaps his daughter. Bobbie is a Martian Marine working on station on Ganymede during the attack where she is going to lost all of her shipmates. The last character introduced in Avasarala, a UN official trying to understand what is happening while maintaining peace between Earth and Mars.

Of course, as you may have guessed, all of their paths are going to cross during the story.

One thing that I did not like that much in Levianthan Wakes was the lack of female characters. Naomi (Holden’s genius girlfriend) was great but she was pretty much the only female character to have a big influence and we did not have the chance to see the story from her POV.

However, Bobbie and Avasarala were great. They probably are some of my favorite female characters ever. I was always looking forward to their chapters and Avasarala made me laugh out loud a lot because well, let’s just say that the lady can swear, and with a lot of originality. They were both very strong and very good at their jobs but they were at the same time still very human and they felt 100% real. I hope that they are going to have important roles in the future of the story !

I was also glad that we had the chance to explore and to see more of the world, the different cultures but also the importance of politics between Earth and Mars that were just mentionned in Leviathan Wakes.

My biggest disappointment was the lack of character development in Holden’s character. After two books he remains the same and the way he acts would be extremely dangerous if not for his wonderful crew which is always here to tell him to stop being so stupid. I think that Jim Holden incarnates all the bad habits of Jim Kirk in Star Trek but not really what makes him a great captain. I hope that this is going to change because his POV was always the one I did not want to read.

Overall this book was great and I liked it a lot more than the first one. I can’t wait to read Abaddon’s Gate and I should get to it soon since I have already ordered it !

★★★★ 1/2

 

Uprooted by Naomi Novik

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Since we are very close to the end of the year, I am trying to squeeze some of my most anticipated books of the years in the last days of 2015 and I am quite happy to have managed to read Uprooted by Naomi Novik this month.

This book follows a teenage girl named Agnieszka who lives in the Wood, a corrupted forest which threatens the peacefull valley she lives in. Agnieszka and her people are protected by the Dragon, the most powerful wizard of the kingdom, however his help is not free, indeed,every ten years, he choose a seventeen years old girl to serve him in his castle.

The next choosing is close and  Agnieszka is sure that she’s not going to be picked : she’s the clumsiest person of her village, she doesn’t think that she has any special talent and she isn’t really the most beautiful seventeen years old girl of the valley. She isn’t Kasia, her dearest friend. Everyone know Kasia is the one that the Dragon will choose.

Except, she’s not.

Have you guessed who’s the one that the Dragon will choose ? The suspens is real… 😛

So, I really enjoyed this book. It was not what I expected but I think that it was because this book had quite a lot of hype so it’s not that easy to have ‘normal’ expectations going into it.

I liked the character of Agnieszka and how loyal she was to Kasia. It is pretty rare to find really good female friendship in books especially in YA literature. This was a very good one because it felt real : everything was not perfect between them but it did not drove them apart, on the contrary.

However, Agnieszka annoyed me quite a lot during certain scenes. That’s not that she was dumb but just that she was incredibly naive. She’s told a good amount of times not to do certain things and… of course she still does them. And that’s good for the story but I would have liked if she just thinks, at least a little, before acting.

Her character development was great though. She really grew into a more confident and less naive character during the story. I especially loved the way she was the end: the Agnieszka of the last two chapters was way different from the one at the beginning and for the best !

Speaking of the ending, it was great ! I did not expect the story to take this turn and it made me want to see it turned into a Studio Gibli movie. It left me feeling.. good. At peace. And that’s pretty rare for most of the books that I usually read (I am talking about you Golden Son !)

Still, I had two little problems with the book.

The biggest probably was the pacing of the story. Some passages were very slow and too detailled for me and tend to bore me but other passages were  rushed. I think that it may be because this book is a standalone and that  it must be complicated to decide which things to tell or to pass on.

My other problem was the romance. I am not against them but sometimes I can live without them and this was one of this case. I did not think that the romance added anything to the story and when it appeared I was a little lost. I asked myself if I missed clues of it beforehand because I did not expect it at all.

Overall, I am happy to have read this. Uprooted is a cozy, heartwarming read that was perfect for the holiday season and I would recommend if you are looking for one. I don’t know yet if I am going to pick up more of Novik’s work just yet since I am not interested by her Temeraire series but I will have my eyes open for her next book series or standalone !

★★★1/2

 

 

16 Most Anticipated Releases of 2016

Here are some of my most anticipated releases of 2016 in order of publication

  • All The Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders (January 26th 2016 from Tor Books)                              25372801Sounds like Hogwarts meets NASA to me. Of course I want to read it 😉

 

  • The Alchemy of Chaos by Marshall Ryan Maresca (February 2nd 2016 from DAW )                                           25894048 This is the second book in the Maradaine series which follows Veranix a magic student, fighting crimes. I really enjoyed the first book, The Thorn of Dentonhill and I can’t wait for the sequel. I already pre-ordered it !

 

  • Morning Star by Pierce Brown (February 9th 2016 from Del Rey/Hodderscape)                                    18966806 If you have read my review of Golden Son, you’ll know that I can’t wait for the sequel.;) If someone could lend me a TARDIS I will be forever grateful !

 

  • United States of Japan by Peter Tieryas (March 1st 2016 from Angry Robot 25809801 This is an alternate history book set in a world were the Axis won WWII and the Empire of Japan rules the western states of the USA. If I remember correctly it also has something to do with a video game. Yes I know, this is the vaguest synopsis ever but I usually like to go blind into books 😉

 

  • Arkwright by Allen Steele (March 1st 2016 from Tor Books)  25659450This book has no synopsis on Goodreads but I believe that it is about Nathan Arkwright, an author who thinks that humans cannot survive on Earth anymore and creates a human colony of a Earth-like planet light-years away. It sounds pretty awesome.

 

  • The Last Mortal Bond by Brian Staveley (March 15th 2016 from Tor Books)

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WANT. This is on my Top 3 of “I need it right now”. TARDIS please ?

  • The Winged Histories by Sofia Samatar (March 15th 2016 from Small Beer Press)

25330014 Not gonna lie here, I know next to nothing about the book or the author but two of my favorite booktubers, Rachel from Kalanadi and Thomas from SFF180 (he also have a blog) were very enthusiastic about it and I totally trust their opinions. Let’s have a look at the Goodreads synopsis : “Four women, soldier, scholar, poet, and socialite, are caught up on different sides of a violent rebellion. As war erupts and their families are torn apart, they fear they may disappear into the unwritten pages of history. Using the sword and the pen, the body and the voice, they struggle not just to survive, but to make history.”  It is pretty vague but it does sounds really interesting.

  • The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater (April 26th 2016 from Scholastic) 17378527 First of, this cover is the most beautiful thing ever. This the final book in the Raven Cycle. I have yet to read the thrid one, Blue Lily Lily Blue, but I am still going to pre-order this one because I just finished The Dream Thieves and it was very good !

 

  • Sleeping Giants by Sylvain Neuvel  (April 26th 2016 from Del Rey) 25733990

Again, I don’t know much about this one but a lot of people compared it to The Martian by Andy Weir. Also it follows a female physicist and I can’t read enough books that are both compared to the Martian and follows a female scientist. WANT.

  • The Rose and the Dagger by Renee Ahdieh May 3rd 2016 by Penguin  23308084

I read The Wrath and the Dawn in July and I did not expect much from it because I am tired of really hyped up YA books. However some people I trust read it and enjoyed it a lot so I decided to try it. And I loved it. I have to admit, this is not the best YA book ever and some parts were on the cheesy side, but I still need to know what is going to happen. And also, the cliffhanger at the end ? I am going to read The Rose and the Dagger as soon as I can !

  • Children of Earth and Sky by Guy Gavriel Kay (May 10th 2016 from NAL) 25332566

I never read a Guy Gavriel Kay novel and I feel that I should probably change that. I don’t know exactly what it’s about but I still want to read it. I know that it’s not very logic but what can you do ? 😛

 

  • Too Like the Lightning Ada Palmer May 10th 2016 by Tor Books 26114545

It is the first book in what is supposed to be a “political SF epic” quartet. WANT.

  • An Import of Intrigue also by Marshall Ryan Maresca (probably coming out in July 2016). This is the sequel to Murder of Mages set in the same world as the Maradaine series and I also really enjoyed the first book in this companion series.

 

  • The Obelisk Gate by N.K. Jemisin August 16th 2016 by Orbit 26228034  This is the second book in the Broken Earth Trilogy. I read the Fifth Season as soon as it was released and I loved it. I will probably pre-order this one too because you can’t have too much of Jemisin’s books in your life.

 

  • Throne of Glass #5 by Sarah J. Maas (probably in the first week of September 2016 from Bloomsbury)                                                                    This book doesn’t have a cover yet but it is probably going to be awesome. This book series isn’t the best but I can’t help but love it. 😛

 

  • Everfair by Nisi Shawl September 6th 2016 by Tor Books

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It is an alternate history steampunk fantasy book. If such a specific genre exist. It follows the consequences Congo’s colonization by Belgium if the native population had discovered steam technology earlier. This idea sounds awesome and I am very intrigued about this book.

Voila. Those are some of my most anticipated releases! It was very difficult to choose because lots of things sounds awesome !

What about you ? What are your most anticipated releases of 2016 ?

Night of Knives by Ian C. Esslemont

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This book is the first book in the Malazan Empire which is a companion series to the Malazan Book of The Fallen written by Steven Erikson.

The basic premise of this book is pretty complicated to explain if you have not read at least the first book in Erikson’s series but I am going to try. 😉

This book follows two very different main characters, the first one is Temper a war veteran who is hiding in Malaz City, the old capital of the Empire, from the Claws , an order spies working for the new Empress. The second main character is Kiska, a young teenager whose only dreams are to escape Malaz City to see the real world.

The book mostly takes place during the night of the Shadow Moon, a night on which a prophecy predicts the return of the former Emperor, Kellanved, disappeared for years.

This was a really short book (298 pages) compared to every other Malazan which are more around 900 pages (if not more). It offers interesting insight on events that were just mentionned in the previous books but that had huge consequences of the world. Basically this book takes place just after the prologue of the first Malazan book, Gardens of the Moon, but prior to the rest of the book.

Esslemont and Erikson both have really different writing style. Erikson’s prose is a lot more intricate. He does not offer explanation about what is going on and you have to figure it all by yourself. In all of that, Esslemont’s is really different. First of, it is a lot more fast paced and straightforward and a lot less confusing than Erikson’s. Also, he explains you things. It might not seems like much but when you are used to concentrate a lot to try and understand what Erikson is doing, Esslemont tells you things which is pretty nice for once !

However, I probably won’t recommend to start the Malazan world with this. Indeed, even if it is a lot less confusing than Erikson’s books, events in this book are not going to mean much if you have not at least read Gardens of the Moon. I would recommend reading this after GotM or Deadhouse Gates because I think that it is going to clarify some plot threads. Personally, I read this after Midnight Tides, which is the fifth book in Erikson’s book because I just followed the publication order but I don’t think that you have to wait that long.

I liked this book and if you want to enhance your Malazan Book of the Fallen experience, I would recommend to pick up Esslemont’s books. I will for sure pick up the sequel, The Return of the Crimson Guards once I will have read, the Bonehunters (book 6 in the Malazan Book of the Fallen Series) because I have heard from a lot of people that it is the best place to read it !

★★★1/2

Have you read the Malazan Book of the Fallen ? If yes, are you interested in Esslemont’s books ?

 

 

A quick gush or an attempted review of the Son of Neptune by Rick Riordan

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This book is the second book in the Heroes of Olympus series which is the spinoff of Percy Jackson.

I tried to review this book but I don’t have much to say except that I adored it. I don’t know why but I loved everything about it, I mean I liked The Lost Hero (the first book in this series), but this one was just the perfect read.

I think that this might be influenced by the fact that I read it just after The Golden Son, which was not really exactly a funny or light read to say the least and just before that I read Midnight Tides by Steven Erikson, again not a super funny read, and I think that it might have play a role in my enjoyment of this book. It has been a long time that I have not read such a funny and fast-paced adventure and it was exactly what I needed. I also really loved the fact that we saw the character of Percy Jackson, who is absolutely amazing !

I read the Percy Jackson series when I was in middle school (or the French equivalent) and I really enjoyed it, I prefered Harry Potter but it was still a nice and full of adventure story. However, to get back into this world almost ten years after is just, I don’t know, full of nostalgia maybe ?

Also, I loved all the new characters introduced and how diverse they are. One of them, Frank,is a Chinese Canadian and I really liked how his culture influenced him.

As always, Rick Riordan’s sense of humor was on point and at several point of the story, I was laughing at loud which earned me strange looks from my family. 😉

Anyway, it’s a great experience and I can’t wait to read the sequel, The Mark of Athena, asap !

★★★★★

Have you read the Percy Jackson series ? If so, do you plan on reading the Heroes of Olympus ?

Also I want to apologize for the lack of reviews, I just finished my finals so I shoud be able to read more and post more reviews 🙂

A review of Golden Son by Pierce Brown

This review is spoiler-free for the entire series.

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Synopsis of Red Rising 

” The Earth is dying. Darrow is a Red, a miner in the interior of Mars. His mission is to extract enough precious elements to one day tame the surface of the planet and allow humans to live on it. The Reds are humanity’s last hope.

Or so it appears, until the day Darrow discovers it’s all a lie. That Mars has been habitable – and inhabited – for generations, by a class of people calling themselves the Golds. A class of people who look down on Darrow and his fellows as slave labour, to be exploited and worked to death without a second thought.

Until the day that Darrow, with the help of a mysterious group of rebels, disguises himself as a Gold and infiltrates their command school, intent on taking down his oppressors from the inside. But the command school is a battlefield – and Darrow isn’t the only student with an agenda. “

 

First of all, I have to tell that my initial reaction to this book was :

“What ?!
Oh no, don’t do this to me Pierce Brown. No.
No no no no no.

Where is Morning Star ?!”

Now that you know this, let me try to order my thoughts 😉

 

The first book was great, it was a 5 stars read for me and I loved it. However it was much more focused on the different tests Darrow had to figure at the Institute than the actual fighting against the Society. In this, Golden Son was exactly how I imagined the first book to be, however it was also so much more. This book is crazy and full of twists and turns at every chapters.

Between reading Red Rising and Golden Son, I managed to forget how much I loved Pierce Brown’s writing style. I don’t really know how to describe it but it really gets me. At the end of part I, I had to close the book to do something else otherwise I was going to have a panic attack. I don’t usually suffer from anxiety while reading but, oh man, some passages  were so stressful that I had to close the book several times.

I know that some people struggle with Brown’s writing style and that they don’t manage to connect with the main character, Darrow. In a way I can see why because even if he follows the trope of “the chosen one”, I never encountered a character quite like him before. He is not perfect and sometimes the fact that he wants to overprotect his friends by keeping them in the dark creates the illusion that he is a very detached character even if it’s not really the case.

“For seven hundred years, my people have been enslaved without voice, without hope. Now I am their sword. And I do not forgive. I do not forget. So let him lead me onto his shuttle. Let him think he owns me. Let him welcome me into his house, so I might burn it down.”

In term of worldbuilding and character development, this book was perfect. At the beginning, I was a bit lost because I did not remember who was who but after a couple of chapters, it was all clear ! Also, I think that the author did a great job at making us understand why some characters are the way they are. At several moments, I find myself empathising with the Jackal and Augustus which I never believed would happen after book 1.  Another example of that is the moment we learn  that (tiny tiny spoiler here) Tactus did not sell the violin and that he planned to play it for Darrow. I am not ashamed to say that I had tears in my eyes at this moment.

“We are not our station in life. We are us – the sum of what we’ve done, what we want to do, and the people who we keep close.”

I think that at this point, it is pretty obvious that I adored this book. The ending was spectacular. Did not see it coming this way at all.

★★★★★

If you want a SF/dystopian equivalent of Game of Thrones in terms of emotions and twists and turns, pleaso do yourself a favor and grab a copy of Red Rising !

 

Dark Matters by Michael Dow

I received this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review

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“Forget the one percent. It just takes one.

Dark Matters is set in a not-too-distant future of extreme income inequality, where a select few of the über-elite have the resources and cutting-edge technologies to choose what’s best for the rest of humanity. Are they committed to saving a world gone wrong? Or simply bent on perpetuating their new status quo?

In this first book of the trilogy, a new CEO takes over the world’s largest corporate conglomerate. But the job comes with an unexpected twist–an invitation to join the Consortium, the small group of global elite who quietly rule the world. The deeper he dives into his new role, the harder it becomes to distinguish between right and wrong.

At the same time, a headstrong art curator is beset by a series of visions, putting her squarely in the crosshairs of the Consortium. From a life-changing moment in a crowded Singapore marketplace, to the business end of an assassin’s gun, she struggles to understand their meaning, and to topple the status quo. In order to succeed, she needs help from the strangers in her visions, including a renegade physicist determined to unravel the century-old mystery of dark matter, and its role in our universe. Together, they might just break the Consortium’s stranglehold – if they don’t strangle each other first.”

Okay… I have conflicted thoughts about this one but I think it is mostly my fault. Indeed if before requesting this book from Netgalley I had read the full synopsis, I probably won’t have pick it up. I think that I only saw the ““Forget the one percent. It just takes one.” which is pretty intriguing line and it got me hooked. I was expecting a story of a man fighting over a huge corporation that was ruling the world, however it is a story that follows mostly three different main characters, the first one is Rudy the new CEO of GRI, one of the largest and most powerful company in the world mentionned first in the synopsis, the second one is Monique Durand an art dealer who has strange visions about people and places, and the last one is Jonas Hanssen, a physicist working for GRI and studying dark matter.

So I did not quite grasp the fact that it was not 100% a scifi book because one the main characters have visions and telekinesic abilities. And for me those are paranormal stuff, which doesn’t mean in any way that it makes it a bad book but it wasn’t what I expected going in… When those elements were introduced I was a bit surprised to say the least. I don’t usually have lots of problem with powers and strange abilities as I almost only read fantasy, but when I start a SF book, I usually want it to be based on scientific stuff you know. 😉

Anyway, this was not my biggest complain, this book rubbed me the wrong way for two reasons.

First of all, I didn’t really liked how women were portrayed. I found that almost none of them had ‘real’ work,. I mean yes, Monique worked in a gallery but she was so rich she spent 98% of the book travelling around the world and spending her money on hotels . Also, Victoria, Rudy’s wife, only took care of the children and went to social events. But for me the worst female representation probably was Kat. She was a graduate student in physics, introduced as a brilliant student at first. However as soon as she met Hanssen, the other physicist always described as “the passionated man who could only think with his guts”, he almost immediately fall in love with her and starts telling her all of his company’s secret . Not really because she was that brilliant but most of all because she was hot. Oh and he also offered her a position in his company. Of course, because she is his “luck charm” after all.Ugh.

My second problem with this book was the pacing and how convenient everything was. For example, Monique, the one with the paranormal abilities, has visions about different people and she feels that she has to find them. So she leaves on a quest which sounds pretty complicated since some of her visions take place in Singapore and Egypt. You may think that it will take ages for her to find those persons. As a matter of fact, no. She always finds them in less about 5 pages once she is the country. Of course. Totally believable.

Also, the plot felt rushed in a lot of place and things just go to ‘smoothly’, there was no real challenge . Another thing that I did not like about the pacing was the fact that during more than half of the book, I still did not know where the story was going. I don’t mind it at the beginning up until a third of the book but after that, I kind of want to know why I’m reading something.

However, it was not a complete disaster . The writing was good and it all flowed pretty easily. It was a pretty quick read and some passages were really good. The ending was also pretty interesting and some of the technologies created in this near-future novel were completely believable which was great to see.

I don’t see myself reading the sequel but if you like near-future dystopian with paranormal elements, that might be something you’ll enjoy.

★★ 1/2

This book will come out on February 2016 from 128 Publishing