Planetfall by Emma Newman is a sci-fi adventure that took me completely by surprise. I was fascinated by the realistic portrayal of planet colonization via 3D printing, but found so much more to the story than I expected. If you’re looking for compelling characters and mysteries with fast-pacing and a great hypothesis of how we could settle other planets, don’t miss Planetfall.
Note: I received an advanced copy of Planetfall from the publisher. Some things may have changed in the final version.
Planetfall by Emma Newman
Published by Roc on Nov. 3rd, 2015
Genres: Adult, Sci-fi
Page Length: 336 pages
How I got my copy: Publisher
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Renata Ghali believed in Lee Suh-Mi’s vision of a world far beyond Earth, calling to humanity. A planet promising to reveal the truth about our place in the cosmos, untainted by overpopulation, pollution, and war. Ren believed in that vision enough to give up everything to follow Suh-Mi into the unknown.
More than twenty-two years have passed since Ren and the rest of the faithful braved the starry abyss and established a colony at the base of an enigmatic alien structure where Suh-Mi has since resided, alone. All that time, Ren has worked hard as the colony's 3-D printer engineer, creating the tools necessary for human survival in an alien environment, and harboring a devastating secret.
Ren continues to perpetuate the lie forming the foundation of the colony for the good of her fellow colonists, despite the personal cost. Then a stranger appears, far too young to have been part of the first planetfall, a man who bears a remarkable resemblance to Suh-Mi.
The truth Ren has concealed since planetfall can no longer be hidden. And its revelation might tear the colony apart…
- The characters of Planetfall are really the main selling point in my opinion. Ren is one of my favorite types of characters in that she is a prickly woman who doesn’t want others interfering with her plans for her life. She and everyone else has a lot more going on under the surface however and it was great figuring them all out.
- There are several mysteries to solve and as soon as I thought I had guessed how one might get figured out, I was either proven wrong or something else popped up that had to fit in to the solution as well. I love a story that keeps me turning pages because I simply have to know what is actually going on!
- Planetfall takes place completely on an alien planet and I enjoyed the details of the setting. There is a strong aspect of discovery in the story since there is a huge alien forest-thing nearby the settlement that has to be explored.
- If we are ever able to get to another planet to try to settle on it, 3D printing is probably going to play a major role and it was really cool to see that portrayed in sci-fi. There were other things later on that also were refreshingly accurate according to what we currently know, though I don’t want to spoil anything ;-).
- The pacing and writing of Planetfall is addictive. I read the whole book in nearly one sitting and took it along on the ride to a friend’s because I had ten pages left and couldn’t stop! As soon as one event is getting wrapped up, something else draws your attention and you won’t want to stop reading.
- I was surprised by the appearance of a serious mental disorder in Planetfall and found it a little difficult to read. I can’t say how well it was handled since I don’t have experience with the condition, but there were times when it made me a bit uncomfortable. So, trigger warning and I’d be curious to hear others thoughts.
- The ending of Planetfall is pretty open. I thought it worked for the story, but I know that it will really annoy readers who need closure ;-).
Planetfall is a fantastic sci-fi with strong characters and an addictive mystery. I’ve never read anything else from Emma Newman, but she is now an author I’ll need to find more from if she always writes this well! If you’re looking for a solid sci-fi with both great science and great characters, this is the one.
Have you read this one? What did you think? Are you excited for it if you haven’t gotten to it yet?
Planetfall by Emma Newman
© 2015, Anya. All rights reserved.