LOVED this book! And I went in honestly a bit wary as I don’t ever do horror- but I just loved Wellington’s suspense-filled read!
This sci-fi thriller opens onto a future in which humanity has ventured deep into space, form a nearby colony on Jupiter’s moon Ganymede to far flung outposts far away into the galaxy. Special Agent Alexandra Petrova, an intrepid military investigator is closing in on a serial killer when her superiors both lockdown her weapons and tell her to stand down. She encounters in the alleged serial killer’s hideaway the weirdness of people complaining of starvation despite food brought their way, and she’s also lectured by the new head of military security, Agent who took over the post previously held by Alexandra’s mom.
Next thing she knows, Alexandra’s been assigned to do a security check of a remote human colony that edges an alien built solar system known as Paradise-1. Non-coincidentally, this is also where her mother has fled post retirement to join the community’s homesteaders staking out life on a new planet. She finds herself on a sophisticated shuttle heading to Paradise-1 along with Doctor Zhang-Lei, who himself has been traumatized from being the sole survivor of a human colony who self-destructed. There’s also Sam Parker, acting captain, with whom years early she had a wild weekend affair, as well as the ship’s sophisticated AI and a hilarious robot who continues to 3D-print new bodies for himself as he proves as much a hero as the rest of the crew.
They arrive to find Paradise-1 surrounded by a plethora of hostile ships and come immediately under attack. It takes all the crew’s ingenuity to fight for survival amidst their ship’s AI having shut itself down to continually re-booting as it’s been infected by an alien virus.
The characters are keenly drawn with much depth, and the world comes alive with Wellington’s amazing descriptions.
The edge-of-your seat plotting and clever twists keep you guessing the whole time.
My only complaint: the book ends on a dramatic cliff-hanger that took my breath away. Seriously?!
Next book in the series pronto please!
Thanks to Orbit Books and NetGalley for an advanced reader’s copy.