Review by cafoster -- Solaris Seethes (Solaris Saga book 1)

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Christina Rose
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Review by cafoster -- Solaris Seethes (Solaris Saga book 1)

Post by Christina Rose »

[Following is a volunteer review of "Solaris Seethes (Solaris Saga book 1)" by Janet McNulty.]
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2 out of 4 stars
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Solaris Seethes is the first of four books in the Solaris Saga, written by Janet McNulty. If you enjoy reading Science Fiction or Fantasy books, then Solaris Seethes may just be the book for you.

In the beginning of this book, we meet Rynah, whose world is literally falling apart around her as she discovers that her new fiancé has decided to steal one of six very powerful crystals. Without this crystal, Rynah's home planet of Lanyr cannot survive. Furthermore, when this crystal combines with the other five crystals, a powerful weapon forms.

After failing to keep the crystal from being taken, Rynah seeks out safety from the wreckage of her planet. She soon finds refuge in a decommissioned military vessel that her late grandfather purchased at an auction. Rynah soon finds out this is no ordinary ship. This ship, whose name is Solaris, has an artificial intelligence which allows her to communicate freely with Rynah, and anyone else on the ship. Solaris made a promise to Rynah's grandfather before he died, that she would care for and guide his granddaughter, and that is just what she intends to do.

While Rynah only wants to seek revenge on the man, Klanor, who broke her heart and was responsible for the fate of their planet, Solaris convinces her to instead follow an old legend that will help her to find, and hopefully to retrieve, the remaining crystals. This old legend, which Rynah finds very hard to stand behind, calls for Rynah to team up with four people who meet a particular criteria. These people will all come from the planet Earth, each from a different time in our past, present, and future. Solaris is in charge of locating those that meet the necessary requirements, and of ultimately kidnapping each of them.

Our four heroes are the warrior, the philosopher, the inventor, and the lover. Alfric (the warrior), is a Viking King from 1163, and he is somewhere in his 40s. Solon (the philosopher) is a scribe from 751 B.C. He's a 17-year-old who often daydreams, and who is constantly running behind schedule. Tom (the inventor) is a 20-year-old from the year 2099. His most recent invention, which took him several tries to finally get working, is an engine that runs on the magnets' polarity. Brie (the lover) is a 16-year-old from the year 2014. Her father died six years earlier in Afghanistan. He was in the Army. Brie is often the victim of bullying, and hates conflict, thus never really defending herself.

The group must put aside any differences to come together to try to find and retrieve the powerful crystals. Otherwise, Klanor can move forward in his plan to destroy solar systems and create his own empire.

I have very mixed feelings about this book, and it wasn't easy to commit to a rating. The tone of the book itself, is very conversational. The words and pages flow easily, making it a fast-paced and comfortable read. There is plenty of action, and the descriptions are vivid and colorful. It's not hard to picture in your head, what is happening at any given moment in the story.

My problem is with the characters, particularly the female characters. Alfric, Tom, and Solon are strong, funny, and smart. However, Brie and Rynah are lacking.

Rynah shows no true leadership. Right after these four people get ripped from all that they are familiar with, however good or bad, Rynah calls them vermin. She's cold and condescending. She's bossy and constantly angry, especially with Brie. I get that she became jaded and distrustful because of what happened with Klanor, but her attitude is pretty ridiculous throughout the book. There's ample opportunity for her to show growth, and she just doesn't.

Brie lacks courage to an extreme degree. There were several times when she just curled into a ball while those around her seriously needed her help. Her homesickness is completely understandable. I'm not sure why nobody else had a bigger reaction to being kidnapped. But, it's the constant need of being rescued that gets to me. She steps it up towards the end, but I'm not convinced she didn't just step up out of default.

Brie and Rynah are just very stagnant characters. Growth and development are extremely important to any story, especially one in which you are something of a hero. I give Solaris Seethes 2 out of 4 stars. The story itself really is good, and if you enjoy action and adventure or science fiction, it really is worth the read. However, if character development within a story is important to you, you may not enjoy this particular book.

******
Solaris Seethes (Solaris Saga book 1)
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Miriam Molina
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Post by Miriam Molina »

How disappointing that the main character doesn't seethe at all. The plot seems to be interesting, with five people from different eras uniting to save Rynah's world. I hope the author will be able to fortify the two girls to sustain the series to the end.
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Post by Christina Rose »

Miriam Molina wrote:How disappointing that the main character doesn't seethe at all. The plot seems to be interesting, with five people from different eras uniting to save Rynah's world. I hope the author will be able to fortify the two girls to sustain the series to the end.
The title actually refers to the ship, Solaris, but the main character does seethe as well. (If the term seethes refers to anger, which is how I understood it)

The plot really is an interesting one. I just feel like the author really missed the boat when it came to the female characters. In my experience with the science fiction genre, there is more of a gender equality when it comes to the characters. An angry female lead is not the same as a strong female lead.

I hope the author allows her characters proper growth as well. I cannot honestly see where she would have been able to take the story otherwise. This is the only book I have read in this Saga, though.
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Post by Miriam Molina »

Hi Christina Rose. You made me smile there. Yes, Rynah seethes as she is always angry.

I was trying to be funny, using "seethes" to mean "hot" (the slang for extremely attractive). Now the joke's on me, haha.

I'm looking forward to reading more of your reviews and seeing you in the forums!
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Post by Christina Rose »

Miriam Molina wrote:Hi Christina Rose. You made me smile there. Yes, Rynah seethes as she is always angry.

I was trying to be funny, using "seethes" to mean "hot" (the slang for extremely attractive). Now the joke's on me, haha.

I'm looking forward to reading more of your reviews and seeing you in the forums!
Yes, that one definitely went right over my head, lol. ? Witty banter sometimes eludes me ?

I look forward to reading more from you, as well!
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Post by Afuglsan »

I completely agree with you on the lack of character development! To me the author did a poor job of connecting the characters to the readers because of this.
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Post by Christina Rose »

Afuglsan wrote:I completely agree with you on the lack of character development! To me the author did a poor job of connecting the characters to the readers because of this.
I agree, and this lack of a connection really is unfortunate. The plot of a book is what initially captures my attention, but it is largely the characters that keep me invested.
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Post by ReyvrexQuestor Reyes »

Interesting take you made in the novel. You really went over it with a fine-toothed comb. I was by far very forgiving when I made my review on this. More power to you. I enjoyed your review.
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Post by ButterscotchCherrie »

I like the idea of the energy in the crystals. The characters sound as if they have potential but it's a shame about the female characters. I agree, growth and development are important in a novel. And Brie sounds more like a codependant than a lover - a lover could be the strongest of all if done differently! Excellent review, thanks.
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Post by HouseOfAtticus »

Thank you so much for this review. I liked what I read.
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Post by Christina Rose »

ReyvrexQuestor Reyes wrote: 31 Dec 2017, 09:31 Interesting take you made in the novel. You really went over it with a fine-toothed comb. I was by far very forgiving when I made my review on this. More power to you. I enjoyed your review.
Thank you. I’ll have to take a look at your review soon. :)
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Post by Christina Rose »

ButterscotchCherrie wrote: 31 Dec 2017, 15:23 I like the idea of the energy in the crystals. The characters sound as if they have potential but it's a shame about the female characters. I agree, growth and development are important in a novel. And Brie sounds more like a codependant than a lover - a lover could be the strongest of all if done differently! Excellent review, thanks.
Thank you. I agree that the lover could be the strongest, and that the characters do have potential. Perhaps there is more growth to come in the next book.
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Post by Christina Rose »

HouseOfAtticus wrote: 01 Jan 2018, 10:13 Thank you so much for this review. I liked what I read.
Thanks for taking time to read it! :)
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