The first thing you may notice about this book is that the cover is reminiscent of Andy Weir’s books. But I approve of covers that convey a book’s comp titles.
The author provides a highly detailed style which coalesces into atmospheric descriptions without sacrificing a quick pace. There is a good balance of narration and dialogue, and about the average amount of exposition. Such a complex set up and execution requires a certain amount of explanation, and the reader is goaded on by an interplay of mystery and context. The mystery in question is thrilling at times, reminiscent of many other scenarios related to heroes saving the planet. It reminded me a lot of Mass Effect in terms of general tone and the texture of the story, which is a plus in my mind. The novel makes use of big cinematic set pieces and science fiction tropes employed for grandiose effect. If you like Rendezvous with Rama and similar spooky s-f explorations with high stakes, you should give this one a go.
The character interactions and backstories were often interesting, but not quite as entertaining as the implementation of speculative concepts, which took center stage in many chapters.
It’s long, with plenty of twists and turns along the way, requiring as much suspension of disbelief as your average blockbuster. Some eccentric dialogue and character reactions, but well-edited on the sentence level. Bizarre creatures and scene by scene dramatic tension, while the author intelligently incorporates many unique ideas into a familiar format offering an enjoyable adventure.