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Exin Ex Machina: Asterion Noir Book 1 (Volume 1) Paperback – June 5, 2018
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So in 2014 I was digging around in the Amazon Kindle libraries looking for a new author in military/space opera. I chose to read Starshine, GS Jennsen's first book in a 9 book series called Aurora Rhapsody. It was so good I was astonished it was her first. Needless to say I was hooked. When Aurora ended I was distraught. I wanted it to continue forever lol. But all good things....
When Ms. Jennsen announced a new series I was worried it wouldn't move me the way the first series had. Well I worried for nothing because Exin Ex Machina is another must read hit from this author. I don't do autopsy reviews, so I won't be retelling her story in this review. I'll just say if you enjoy heart stopping plots, superb suspense, unreal tech and a view into the amazing imagination of GS Jennsen buy this book. If you haven't started Aurora Rhapsody yet you should. Happy Reading!
I loved the cyberpunk setting of the story, and Jennsen does a great job of exploring all the important societal impacts the advanced technology of her setting has on its inhabitants. This ties directly into the conflict in exciting ways, and it gives the story a dark, gritty feel that makes the more light-hearted moments shine even brighter. That balance is important, I think. This is a story with some pretty bleak, overarching conflicts and some even bleaker personal ones for the story's characters. But there's a good sense of humor in some places that balances it out and reminds us what these characters are fighting for. There's also a strong mystery element to the story as little pieces and hints are laid out. We don't get all the answers by the end, but it was that distinct sense of just wanting to figure out what was going on that drove much of the story's conflict and really sucked me into the story.
As far as characters go, I seriously could not have asked for better characters. Sometimes in a series, I feel like it takes me a while to start to really get attached to the characters, but that wasn't the case here at all. I loved Nika, Dashiel, and many of the secondary characters almost from the moment they were introduced, and upon reaching the end of the story, all I wanted was to continue this journey with them. Jennsen does an excellent job of putting the reader right inside the character's head and really feeling what they're feeling and experiencing, whether that character is protagonist Nika or one of the minor characters. I have a giant soft spot in my heart for characters who are damaged, as I'm sure many readers do, and these are some seriously damaged characters. Despite all of that, they keep fighting, keep going, even when all the odds are stacked against them, and you can't help rooting for characters like that. I can't wait to see where their separate paths will lead them all next. I'm sure it's going to be quite the adventure.
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I am still trying to figure out what to say to people who aren't already familiar with the author's previous...Read more