Monday, 1 June 2015

SCIENCE FICTION REVIEW: Australia 1: Way Down Dark - James P Smythe

Release Date: 02/06/15
Publisher:  Hodder


The first in an extraordinary new YA trilogy by James Smythe, perfect for fans of The Hunger Games and Divergent.

There's one truth on Australia: You fight or you die. Usually both.

Seventeen-year-old Chan's ancestors left a dying Earth hundreds of years ago, in search of a new home. They never found one.

The only life that Chan's ever known is one of violence, of fighting. Of trying to survive.

But there might be a way to escape. In order to find it, Chan must head way down into the darkness - a place of buried secrets, long-forgotten lies, and the abandoned bodies of the dead.

Seventeen-year-old Chan, fiercely independent and self-sufficient, keeps her head down and lives quietly, careful not to draw attention to herself amidst the violence and disorder. Until the day she makes an extraordinary discovery - a way to return the Australia to Earth. But doing so would bring her to the attention of the fanatics and the murderers who control life aboard the ship, putting her and everyone she loves in terrible danger.

And a safe return to Earth is by no means certain


When an author has written adult fiction prior to attempting a young adult book, there are a fair number of itmes that they cannot translate the work so that it has not only a solid storyline but also allows readers to stay not only gripped to the twists and turns but presents it in such a way that it has enough detail to keep you informed without overstocking it to interrupt the storytelling.

What the author does exceptionally well is this title is bringing their protagonist across to the reader, she’s smart, she’s savvy and when you have it all thrown into a rather small world of a spaceship really helps give the readers a claustrophobic cramped feeling that demonstrates that no matter how far you try to run, sometimes its not just enough.

All round, the book was one that I had a lot of time for. I loved the descriptions, the prose and of course the plot weaving that worked exceptionally well for me. Back this up that it not only will please YA readers but a good few adults and for me, that’s the sign of an author with not only a cracking idea but one that translates for readers of all ages.

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