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4 out of 4 stars
Review by James Craft
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From the outset of this book I was hooked: the opening scene was full of action and set the stage for an intense and somewhat conflicted hero in Natharis. He is chasing Mikain, who is a terrorist with a bomb, and we get the sense that Natharis is battling against his own pride as much as his adversary. At the end of the fight, he targets a cable that Mikain is using to escape and shoots it so that he doesn’t get away, and they manage to take him alive. It is an amazing shot, but Natharis brushes it off. The reader is immediately informed that Natharis doesn’t want his name in the newspaper because he isn’t a glory seeker. He was only doing his job.
It goes from here to introduce Livia, who is an even more powerful character and easily my favorite in the story. She is at the center of a religious organization that controls people through lust and trains young women how to be companions, and early on we see her being dominated and used by her religious leader. Though that leaders religious title is one that cannot be reprinted here, suffice to say it is a complicated religion in many ways. It reminded me, as did a lot of the story, of the short-lived television show Firefly, though this was a little bit less generous in its depiction of the religion and the way it utilized its powers and contained more immediate social commentary.
The story progresses very smoothly and E. Bryan has a gift for making his characters come alive. There were a large number of side characters that were introduced along the way, but each of them had their own personality and unique traits so they were easy to keep track of. The final showdown when Livia walks in upon an orgy and takes on the religious figurehead was fantastic and vivid and it was easy to root for the good guys.
The Aetherverse by E. Bryan started out with a bang and never really let up on the intensity and action presented in the story. I rate it 4 out of 4 stars and truly enjoyed reading it and getting to know these characters. By the time it was done I was sad it was over and looking forward to seeing what they might do now. The world being presented echoed clearly with the world we live in and the novel contained quite a few social commentaries that never became cumbersome or heavy-handed. I love stories with a corrupt religion and the people who fight to make it better, and I think that anyone who enjoys political science fiction about unlikely companions taking on much more powerful enemies will really find a winner with this book.
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kimmyschemy06 wrote:Sounds like a very interesting book. I'm not much into political science fiction but this seems like a great read with delightful characters. Good job on the review. Congratulations to E. Bryan on such a well written book.
Was great to read! Thanks so much.
View Raven's Peak on Lincoln's website.
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Lincoln wrote:Political science fiction has never really been something I like, but if this one focuses more on the science fiction aspects it might be worth looking into.
The sci-fi parts were the best, in my opinion, and it never really went overboard on political theory or anything.
mewsmash wrote:Political science fiction is something I've never dabbled in, but this sounds like nthe perfect novel to start with! Nice work!
Thanks so much! Definitely a good place to start.
lqueen75 wrote:This looks interesting. Not usually what I would read but the review has me wanting to read it. Thanks!
I'm glad you enjoyed the review and thank you so much for stopping by! The book was certainly interesting and not really what I expected either!
karaleigh2 wrote:This sounds like a great book--I love dystopian fiction. Well-written review--thanks!
Thank you! It is certainly an interesting read and good dystopian fiction is always worth checking out IMO!
Goldenmane wrote:I enjoy dystopian sci-fi and have ceased to be amazed by how the underlying concerns seem to mirror the problems in today's world. It appears that oppression and revolt will continue ad infinitum.
Yeah, it certainly seems that it is reflected in many aspects of modern society. A sort of look at the future and past.
Pavel wrote:The Plot of worthy attention.
Thanks for stopping by! It is definitely a worthy plot and the author really manages to spin a compelling yarn with this one!