Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Book Review: Leviathan Wakes (The Expanse #1)

Title: Leviathan Wakes (The Expanse #1)
Author: James S.A. Corey
Genre: Science Fiction (Space Opera), Adventure, Mystery, Humor
Rating: 5/5
Page Count: 561 pages (paperback)
Publication Date: 2011

Plot: (from Goodreads)
The first novel in James S.A. Corey's SF New York Times bestselling Expanse series.
Humanity has colonized the solar system - Mars, the Moon, the Asteroid Belt and beyond - but the stars are still out of our reach.

Jim Holden is XO of an ice miner making runs from the rings of Saturn to the mining stations of the Belt. When he and his crew stumble upon a derelict ship, The Scopuli, they find themselves in possession of a secret they never wanted. A secret that someone is willing to kill for - and kill on a scale unfathomable to Jim and his crew. War is brewing in the system unless he can find out who left the ship and why.

Detective Miller is looking for a girl. One girl in a system of billions, but her parents have money and money talks. When the trail leads him to The Scopuli and rebel sympathizer Holden, he realizes that this girl may be the key to everything.

Holden and Miller must thread the needle between the Earth government, the Outer Planet revolutionaries, and secretive corporations - and the odds are against them. But out in the Belt, the rules are different, and one small ship can change the fate of the universe.

This book was everything I was kind of craving when I read it: a space opera that was character centric, and there was a crew. With things I didn't know I'd completely love - the noir feel that Miller and his narration have, also the horror elements. Overall - this book was just completely fantastic and I cannot wait to continue on with the series.

I hadn't really looked into the plot, I'd picked it up because it was a Sword and Laser pick and didn't end up getting around to reading it with the group (summers are hectic), but I still remembered it'd been something I was interesting in, and people were saying good things.

The reason it took me so long to read it, honestly, is because of the fact that I don't read a lot of SciFi, which is weird to me considering the shows or movies I'd loved, you'd think reading SciFi would of happened pretty easily. And then - I fell into a SciFi kick, which this book was a part of, and I'm so glad when I was wracking my brain for SciFi books, I remembered that I owned this one.

To get to the point of this review - I'd recommend this book, definitely. It's surprisingly realistic feeling and I loved the characters and how they interacted with each other. Everyone in this book is interesting and it feels very real, gritty real almost, the whole world and story, and that might of been my favorite part of it - it can't be easy to make a very far future world seem real, but it definitely did.

And, on the last point because I want to stress it again: the characters. This book is definitely character driven and it has two main narrators that do that - and those two narrators have very different views on some big things, and some of the same, but - it was interesting to see those two different people interact and how they thought and just everything.

So, to recap: space opera with a crew, noir, horror, fantastic characters, solid plot, which made it an all around fantastic read which I'd highly recommend if it sounds like something you'd be interested in.

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