Book Review: Achilles by Greg Boose

Title: Achilles

Author: Greg Boose

Technical Rating: 3/5

Enjoyment Rating: 4/5

Synopsis:

Lost meets The 100 in this action-packed YA science fiction series-starter.

“WE’RE ON OUR OWN NOW…”

The year is 2221, and humans have colonized a planet called Thetis in the Silver Foot Galaxy. After a tragic accident kills dozens of teenage colonists, Thetis’s leaders are desperate to repopulate. So Earth sends the Mayflower 2—a state-of-the-art spaceship—across the universe to bring 177 new homesteaders to the colony.

For Jonah Lincoln, an orphaned teen who has bounced between foster homes and spent time on the streets of Cleveland, the move to Thetis is a chance to reinvent himself, to be strong and independent and brave, the way he could never be on Earth. But his dreams go up in smoke when their ship crash-lands, killing half the passengers and leaving the rest stranded—not on Thetis, but on its cruel and unpopulated moon, Achilles.

Between its bloodthirsty alien life forms and its distance from their intended location, Achilles is a harrowing landing place. When all of the adult survivors suddenly disappear, leaving the teenage passengers to fend for themselves, Jonah doubts they’ll survive at all, much less reach Thetis—especially when it appears Achilles isn’t as uninhabited as they were led to believe.

Review:

Achilles is a new young adult science fiction novel packed to the brim with adventure and fear.  The story mimics American colonial history, but it is set in the future and taken to space.  Greg Boose brings rich imagination to his writing while playing to traditional science fiction elements.  Even though Achilles is directed towards the young adult audience, the novel can be enjoyed by readers of all ages.

Science fiction is one of those genres that often comes with heavy storylines and plots that are sometimes hard to keep straight.  Achilles reflects this aspect of science fiction, but it compiles a story that oozes excitement and intrigue.  Seasoned science fiction readers are sure to absorb Boose’s writing well, and they will find themselves lost in his beautifully imagined world.  Achilles promises high action and diverse characters, which I always appreciate in literature.

However, the novel did have a few flaws.  For one thing, the sentences were often long-winded and over described.  The dialogue was not a big element to the story, so the writer tended to “tell” more than “show” the reader.  Even though I enjoy description in novels, I found that some parts of the novel could become redundant.  Boose’s cast of characters was also quite large, and it was hard to keep track of them throughout the novel.  It was also clear to me that Boose purposefully cut the story short since this novel is the first in a series.  I would have rather had a longer novel than a longer series, but I do understand what his intentions were.

Achilles is a thrilling young adult science fiction novel, and I enjoyed falling into the story.  Fans of The 100 will surely enjoy this novel, and I think that it is a great book to get into the science fiction genre.

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