Okay, I am slightly confused. But I bet you would be too! And just to embrace my confusiness (I didn’t even know it was a word) here is a GIF for all of you to enjoy.
YAY! for the first GIF on my blog. May there be many more of those in the future!
Ever since the Delonese ice-planet arrived eleven years ago, Sofi’s dreams have been vivid. Alien. In a system where Earth’s corporations rule in place of governments and the humanoid race orbiting the moon are allies, her only constant has been her younger brother, Shilo. As an online gamer, Sofi battles behind the scenes of Earth’s Fantasy Fighting arena where Shilo is forced to compete in a mix of real and virtual blood sport. But when a bomb takes out a quarter of the arena, Sofi’s the only one who believes Shilo survived. She has dreams of him. And she’s convinced he’s been taken to the ice-planet.
Except no one but ambassadors are allowed there.
For Miguel, Earth’s charming young playboy, the games are of a different sort. As Ambassador to the Delonese, his career has been built on trading secrets and seduction. Until the Fantasy Fight’s bomb goes off. Now the tables have turned and he’s a target for blackmail. The game is simple: Help the blackmailers, or lose more than anyone can fathom, or Earth can afford.
Does a confusing book deserve a confusing review? I will try to rise above my vindictiveness and provide some solid and clear facts (unlike someone else!)
From the very first pages I was thrown into the book without knowing WHO, WHAT or WHY – these were the main questions that flooded my head. What is Fantasy Fight? Was it virtual or real? Are they gamers? and WHAT IS HAPPENING, PLEASE SOMEONE TELL ME?? were the main questions no one troubled to explain.
Obviously (huh, wasn’t so obvious to me at first), as the story progresses further, some things start to make sense. For example, (if you are wondering) Fantasy Fight IS REAL (I think…), at least the players are in the arena on their own, not just some characters they’ve created. Is the arena real? I guess in some sense it is, but it is also a virtual reality. Can you get hurt? Yes, you can (Once again, I think… )
Each player has a back up team of tech guys guiding and aiding them through the obstacles, being able to manipulate the virtual reality to their advantage.
THAT SOUNDS LIKE A VERY COOL CONCEPT!
Maybe, slightly inspired by the Hunger Games but still very cool online gaming, virtual reality, hackers based concept. (Being honest, that was one of the main reasons why I requested this book).
However, after about 30% the games are OVER! And we don’t see any more of them for the rest of the book! Which made me very sad as an online game addict (yes, we all have our secrets and now you know mine. For the Horde!).
The other side of dystopian / sci fi story is no less interesting. There are aliens and different corporations. There is a huge gap between classes. So much room for political drama that I also LOVE!
But the truth be told, for almost 60% of the book I found myself wondering and rereading pages and pages of the book just to find out what I missed, because nothing was clear. Nothing!
That is why I had so much trouble rating this book. The concept is AMAZING. Something I would love to read more about. This new dystopian world is beyond imaginable. With aliens and politics, there is so much potential.
What this book lacked is execution. Even the best of concepts result in losing ideas when told poorly. And when the book does not give readers enough information, background AND description about WHAT IS GOING ON it can never be a good book.
I am actually very disappointed! Arrgh.. The concept is there, the writing is not bad, but there were too many informational gaps to be filled and that is on the editors as much as on the author.
Thank you NetGalley and Thomas Nelson for a free ARC of this book. It was still an enjoyable read regardless of its flaws.
⭐⭐ / 5
I was going to give it three stars but it’s not quite there. And I always try to avoid half stars as much as possible. If you would like to give it a try, I’d say DO IT! But only if you are really interested in the concept.
Let me know in the comments down below what is your favourite sci fi / dystopian book and I also would like some recommendations in this genre for my future reads!