Review: Waking Gods by Sylvain Neuvel

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Overall Score: 8/10

Genre: Science Fiction

Series: Yes, Book 2

Publisher: Del Rey

Release Date: April 4, 2017

Source: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Book Summary (From GoodReads)

As a child, Rose Franklin made an astonishing discovery: a giant metallic hand, buried deep within the earth. As an adult, she’s dedicated her brilliant scientific career to solving the mystery that began that fateful day: Why was a titanic robot of unknown origin buried in pieces around the world? Years of investigation have produced intriguing answers—and even more perplexing questions. But the truth is closer than ever before when a second robot, more massive than the first, materializes and lashes out with deadly force.

Now humankind faces a nightmare invasion scenario made real, as more colossal machines touch down across the globe. But Rose and her team at the Earth Defense Corps refuse to surrender. They can turn the tide if they can unlock the last secrets of an advanced alien technology. The greatest weapon humanity wields is knowledge in a do-or-die battle to inherit the Earth . . . and maybe even the stars.

Review

Sleeping Giants was one of my favorite books 2016 so I’ve been eagerly awaiting Waking Gods. I flew through the first half of the novel and absolutely loved it. Then I hit the second half. Most of what I loved from the first book shifted to the background, leaving behind a faster-paced, more action oriented novel.

What had set this series apart for me originally was that it was very character based. All of these incredible science fiction events would occur, but the focus was on how the events affected the characters. Additionally, I loved seeing how the characters developed over the course of the book. That being said, Waking Gods is not bad, it was just different. While it was an unexpected surprise, I did really enjoy the book.

More so than the previous ones, this was first contact science fiction. I thought that the reactions of the various characters and government agencies were well-developed (and scarily accurate). The plot did jump around a bit toward the end, which made for a slightly disjointed reading experience. There was one subplot that really intrigued me and I can’t wait to see what the author does with it in the next book.

Overall, this book was good. Had it been a little longer and developed the plot and the characters a bit more, it would have been great. I still adore the storytelling style and the overall story though. I have grown very attached to all of the characters, which is a testament to the quality of the writing. Did I like Waking Gods as much as Sleeping Giants? No. Did I still like it? Yes, very much so. And, after the set-up in this one, I think I’ll like the third installment even more.

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