Review: Unearthed by Rebecca Bloomer

UnearthedTitle: Unearthed

Author: Rebecca Bloomer

Series: N/A

Genre: Science Fiction

Received for review through NetGalley

Summary (from Goodreads)

If you’re going to colonise a planet, you’d better be willing to fight for it.

Within Anphobos, there grows a new race. The first generation of humans never to set foot on Earth. They are pale skinned, large eyed and worship no god but science. They possess technological skills and processes Earth has refused to acknowledge. Until now…

“We are Martian. Your religion isn’t ours. Our god is Mars. Our religion is science. Anything we do in the service of Mars, is good. Make no mistake, Earth girl, we are both right and good.”

Fresh off Earth, Jodi Scarfield doesn’t really care for Mars or its politics. Still, accusations of treason will get a girl’s attention..

Review

I’m really glad that proper science fictiony YA is starting to become more widespread and popular. In the wake of all this paranormal romance Twilight stuff, it’s refreshing to see publishers being a bit more adventurous.

I wouldn’t say Unearthed is the best example of the genre but there’s loads to like about it. Jodi makes for a really likeable main character with her sass and independence. There’s plenty of very human background stuff, such as the strained relationship between her parents, contrasting the spacey stuff nicely. I liked the story, and the hint of far reaching politics that ran alongside the smaller challenges of a girl trying to fit in, and a husband and wife trying to reconcile a year spent apart.

In fact, my only real criticism of the book would be that it’s too short. The story barely has time to get started before it’s barrelling towards its climax, and as a consequence the denouement feels rushed and lacks the punch it could have had. Anphobos is a fascinating idea for a settlement, and though we get a good enough flavour not to feel disoriented, there was definitely room for a little more time spent on world building and exploration. Characters are fairly well handled, though again, there wasn’t enough time spent with them to be surprised by betrayals, or rooting for their victories.

This is starting to sound like a negative review, which it isn’t. I did really enjoy reading Unearthed. And the fact that it left me with a sense of wanting more is a testament to the quality of what was there.

It’s just a shame there wasn’t very much there.

Rating: 4/5

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