Monday, September 12, 2011
Glow by Amy Kathleen Ryan
I enjoyed this book. What can I say? I’m a sucker for science fiction, or as I have recently learned the proper name for it - SPACE OPERA. I know, doesn’t that genre name just invoke images of the opera singer during the movie “Fifth Element”? Ahhhaaaaahhhhhhhh. (That’s me singing opera, which I can sort of do. I was pursuing it for awhile when I first moved out to California.) Anyways, it’s a fun twisty drama set in deep space. It’s not too science fiction-y as far as technical stuff goes, so true sci fi fans, this may not be your cup of tea. It’s similar to Beth Revis’ Across the Universe... ya know, bad stuff, happening in space.
So, the general premise is that sometime in the future, the earth is in such bad shape that we left to create a new world. We sent out two ships with people grouped together that would get along. On one ship went the more religious sect and on the other, the more secular or people from differing faiths. The religious group left a year before the secular, separatomg the ships by some great distance. However, at the start of the book, we found out that that religious ship (New Horizon) actually slowed down to rendezvous with the Empyrean (the secular ship). To keep this summary from getting ridiculously long, things are not what they appear to be and bad things happen. It’s twisty and turny all the way through the end.
There are no clear “good guys” or “bad guys” in this one, something I really appreciated. The characters are real and truthful. We all have a bit of good and bad in us. Evil can be committed by good people if they think they are justified or doing the right thing. I really loved our heroine, Waverly. She is strong willed, but not to the point of being a walking stereotype. She really emerges as a leader under crisis and at the end, is dealing with some major emotional issues. Of all the characters, I am most interested to see what happens to her in the next book. We left her in the middle of a major decision making process. The plot also follows Kiernan, her boyfriend and the “golden boy” of the Empyrean. He has to go through some major struggles to become a leader and in the end, turns to religion. To be honest, this is my one major qualm with this book. Maybe it will be explained later... but really? God talking to him? Maybe it’s because I just read a fantasy series that had God as a main character, but man, I really hope this doesn’t become a big religious drama set in space. I liked it more as the action packed, survival story that dealt with some morality issues. I guess I’ll just have to wait and see what happens in book 2.
Until then, if you’re a fan of SPACE OPERA, la la la!, then you should check out “Glow” by Amy Kathleen Ryan. It’s action packed roller coaster ride of plot twists and turns.
I was provided with an ARC from the publisher, St. Martin's Griffin. “Glow” is scheduled to be released tomorrow, September 13th.