Friday, November 1, 2019

Review: Chasing The Shadows

As you likely know I love Maria V. Snyder's worlds, so I was delighted when I received an ARC of Chasing the Shadows through NetGalley to review. Here is the cover and blurb from Goodreads, read on below for my review.

Year 2522. Lyra Daniels is dead.

Okay, so I only died for sixty-six seconds. But when I came back to life, I got a brand new name and a snazzy new uniform. Go me! Seriously, though, it's very important that Lyra Daniels stays dead, at least as far as my ex-friend Jarren, the murdering looter, knows.

While dying is the scariest thing that's happened to me, it morphed my worming skills. I can manipulate the Q-net like never before. But Jarren has blocked us from communicating with the rest of the galaxy and now they believe we've gone silent, like Planet Xinji (where silent really means dead).

A Protector Class spaceship is coming to our rescue, but we still have to survive almost two years before they arrive - if they arrive at all. Until then, we have to figure out how to stop an unstoppable alien threat. And it's only a matter of time before Jarren learns I'm not dead and returns to finish what he started.

There's no way I'm going to let Jarren win. Instead I'll do whatever it takes to save the people I love. But even I'm running out of ideas... - Goodreads

This is the second title in Snyder's Sentinels of the Galaxy series and whilst it's good I do prefer the first. 

I enjoyed the interesting questions and theories raised (about warriors, invisible attackers, murderous looters etc.) and I was motivated to keep reading to find the answers. I also loved the whole concept of the Q-net (imagine an intelligent super internet) and enjoyed worming and flying through it with the MC (this will make sense when you read the book). There was also clear character development throughout the book. The MC certainly matured and it was fun to watch friendships within the security team deepen as they learned to trust each other.

However, I found the first part of this book hard to persevere with and I took frequent breaks in reading. There was a lot of repetition: everyday the MC was assigned physical training and worming (i.e. fancy programming or hacking inside the intelligent super internet). The plot progressed slowly until the last third of the book when it finally speed up (though perhaps a little too fast in parts).

The 'cliffhanger' didn't have the same punch as I've come to expect from Snyder. I was left finding it hard to suspend my disbelief any longer. That last page felt rushed and left me thinking 'er... okay...' There was actually another situation towards the end that would have held me in suspense if not resolved (I'm being deliberately vague to avoid spoilers). If the book had of ended there I'd be a wreck and the next book couldn't come quickly enough. However that tricky situation was resolved as quickly as it started. I'm not in a rush to read the next book. I will read it because I enjoy the characters and their world and I want to see how the arc concludes but I'm not left with a desperate need to read it as soon as possible.

Whilst I didn't love this book as much as I had anticipated I would still recommend the series. The world that Maria has created is marvelous.

My Rating

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book for free through NetGalley for an honest opinion.

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