Review – Defy the Stars by Claudia Gray

Defy the Stars (Defy the Stars #1)Noemi Vidal is a teen soldier from the planet Genesis, once a colony of Earth that’s now at war for its independence. The humans of Genesis have fought Earth’s robotic “mech” armies for decades with no end in sight.

After a surprise attack, Noemi finds herself stranded in space on an abandoned ship where she meets Abel, the most sophisticated mech prototype ever made. One who should be her enemy. But Abel’s programming forces him to obey Noemi as his commander, which means he has to help her save Genesis–even though her plan to win the war will kill him.

Together they embark on a daring voyage through the galaxy. Before long, Noemi begins to realize Abel may be more than a machine, and, for his part, Abel’s devotion to Noemi is no longer just a matter of programming.

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Review – The Dead Lands by Benjamin Percy

The Dead Lands
by Benjamin Percy
The Dead Lands

***NOTE: I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review***

Genre: Horror / SciFi / Fantasy
My Rating **** (4 of 5 stars)

The Dead Lands is at its core a story of survival in the face of apparently insurmountable obstacles – survival not just of a few individuals, but of humanity itself.

Synopsis From Goodreads:
In Benjamin Percy’s new thriller, a post-apocalyptic reimagining of the Lewis and Clark saga, a super flu and nuclear fallout have made a husk of the world we know. A few humans carry on, living in outposts such as the Sanctuary-the remains of St. Louis-a shielded community that owes its survival to its militant defense and fear-mongering leaders.¬† (read more)

The story starts out in Sanctuary, and then hops back and forth between there and the group of escapees who have set off in the hopes of discovering something better. Each member of the scouting party has his or her own personal reason for fleeing Sanctuary. For some, the struggle with their decision to leave causes them almost as much grief as the monsters, inhospitable climates, and other people they meet along the way.

This book had both the horror-road-trip feel of The Talisman, by Stephen King and Peter Straub, and the find-other-survivors-and-keep-the-human-race-going vibe of The Passage, by Justin Cronin. (Both of which I highly recommend if you have not already read them!) It was a suspenseful, thought-provoking tale and I really enjoyed it.

I do think that the way the story wrapped up, there might be a possibility of a little more Lewis and Clark (not to mention Gawea) in the future. I’m not sure that’s what the author was getting at, but I can hope….

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