Series: Avalon, #1
Author: Mindee Arnett
Genre: Young Adult
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
A ragtag group of teenage mercenaries who crew the spaceship Avalon stumble upon a conspiracy that could threaten the entire galaxy in this fascinating and fast-paced sci-fi adventure from author Mindee Arnett.
Of the various star systems that make up the Confederation, most lie thousands of light-years from First Earth-and out here, no one is free. The agencies that govern the Confederation are as corrupt as the crime bosses who patrol it, and power is held by anyone with enough greed and ruthlessness to claim it. That power is derived from one thing: metatech, the devices that allow people to travel great distances faster than the speed of light.
Jeth Seagrave and his crew of teenage mercenaries have survived in this world by stealing unsecured metatech, and they're damn good at it. Jeth doesn't care about the politics or the law; all he cares about is earning enough money to buy back his parents' ship, Avalon, from his crime-boss employer and getting himself and his sister, Lizzie, the heck out of Dodge. But when Jeth finds himself in possession of information that both the crime bosses and the government are willing to kill for, he is going to have to ask himself how far he'll go to get the freedom he's wanted for so long.
Avalon is the perfect fit for teens new to sci-fi as well as seasoned sci-fi readers looking for more books in the YA space-and a great match for fans of Joss Whedon's cult hit show Firefly.
Avalon was right up there with all the science-fiction I just can’t get enough. And being such a huge sci-fi geek, I’m glad that I did pick this series up. I know I will be keeping up with Jeth and his crew.
I think what really drew me in, other than the setting, was the array of interesting characters. Each one was interesting in their own right and I enjoyed each and every one. I also loved that the main character was male. It’s nice to be inside a guy’s mind once and awhile; to step away from all the female protagonists.
Jeth was such a strong character and I loved his determination to protect the ones he loved and held dear. That really came through in the book because of the situations he gets put into. He gets entangled in a very dangerous web, and though he is a young man he never really bowed down to the threats and dangers. He had so much on his shoulders; it was amazing to see such a clear, level-headed and strong individual.
I also enjoyed the relationship he had with his sister. It was heartwarming in the way they protected and cared for each other. I enjoyed that Arnett put in a strong family factor in her book. I loved Lizzie, she was such an adorable young girl and so very smart. I know I can’t wait to see where she goes in the next books.
Though there is quite a cast of characters, there was one that just didn’t sit very well with me. The actions of this character took a very, er, wide turn and that left me in the dust for a while. Though I did understand some of the reasons as to why, I just couldn't believe that this character would be forgiven so easily by Jeth and his crew.
“He didn't know if it was real, if freedom was something you could earn or win after a long, hard fight, or if it was just an illusion. But he decided it didn't matter. Only this mattered. This moment right here, surrounded by the people he cared about. And he realized this was the paradise his parents had meant when they named this ship.”
The atmosphere and word building –along with the sci-fi technology - was such an interesting factor and well written in my opinion. I was really able to get lost in the world that Arnett created. I just loved the mysteries and the twists that I really didn’t see coming. I also like that Arnett allows her readers to imagine the world she created, just giving us enough detail to see, but also allow for our imaginations to play free. The story also built nicely and though it did have a few slow moments, I enjoyed the pace.
However, as much as I just enjoyed this book, I felt there wasn't much room for the characters to grow. The characters were already so strong and well-developed that I felt Arnett didn’t allow for more personal growth. But I am hoping that will happen in the next books. I would love to see the characters get tested and challenged to grow even more!
Avalon was just the kind of science-fiction that I absolutely adore! A perfect book for sci-fi fans like myself who love getting lost in space and exploring different worlds.