Series: Avalon #1
Published by: Balzer & Bray on January 21, 2014
Genre: Science Fiction, Space
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 is a really unique book in the world of young adult books, and is perfect for sci-fi fans! There are very few YA books out there like this.. if any!
When I first started reading, I felt like I was playing Star Wars: The Old Republic.. with the space travel, the crime bosses, and the missions. I loved it! Maybe it’s stereotypical of me to associate anything space travel with Star Wars, but I can’t help it. Star Wars is awesome and the whole space travel thing really made me excited about Avalon.
Avalon had a really interesting story. I liked Jeth as a character and I started to really feel for him. He lost both his parents, his uncle kind of placed him in a bad situation that now has him working for a crime boss guy, and now he has no way to get out of it. (There’s no walking away from that kind of life!) I really sympathized with him! I understood his motives and the pressure he was under. I don’t always connect well with male characters—and maybe I still didn’t connect with Jeth perfectly—but at least I was able to understand and sympathize with him to a certain degree.
I enjoyed all the pieces that came into play. Although maybe some of the twists were predictable, I felt like everything came together quite nicely at the end. There were a few things I didn’t totally expect, and I enjoyed seeing them play out!
One of the one things that caused me to lose a bit of interest was the “almost-paranormal” side of Avalon. At first I saw a book purely about science and technology.. but then an almost-paranormal element was introduced (I thought it seemed more paranormal than futuristic science), and I’m still not sure how I feel about it. It didn’t make the book bad, I just wasn’t crazy about the direction it took. Maybe some people will love it, but I’m just not sure I’m totally on board with it.
Also, there was a lack of history in Avalon. This book is set WAY in the future (hundreds and hundreds of years), but as a result, we’re told almost nothing about how the world evolved from 2013. It throws around the term “First-Earth” a few times, but other than that, we’re given zero sense of how/when the people of Earth started settling on other planets. I think the “current” (in the book) way of life was built up really well and I was easily able to start picturing it. But I always had the lingering questions about how it actually came to be and how things progressed. I guess that kind of comes with the territory of a space travel book though.
I’d classify Avalon as more of a hardcore sci-fi book. So I can’t recommend it to everyone but if sci-fi and space travel are your thing, then definitely give it a whirl!