In her captivating debut novel, Abby Reed has created a rich world fraught with conflict and corruption. Sci-fi fans, be prepared for your next great adventure.
When Planets Fall by Abby J. Reed
I paired Abby J. Reed’s debut novel When Planets Fall with this gorgeous Caelum Malbec, both because of the gorgeous cosmic theme on the label and this STUNNING book cover, and also because the bold flavor profile of this wine matches the bold personalities of the three main characters in this interstellar story.
*All wine recommendations are strictly for those of legal drinking age only.*
About the Book
Title: WHEN PLANETS FALL (Stars Fall Circle #1)
Author: Abby J. Reed
Pub. Date: April 12, 2017
Publisher: Soul Mate Publishing
Formats: Paperback, eBook
On a planet where the only difference between three tribes is their blood color, war is on the horizon. Breaker, an amputee, wants peace for his family and home. Malani, a kidnapped POW, wants to return home. Luka wants justice for his home. All three teens come together when Breaker is given seven days to fix a wrecked enemy starship or their home, and peace, is forfeit..
“In this richly imagined start to a new sci-fi series, Reed brings optimism to the goal of solving entrenched violence in a galaxy far, far away . . . A propulsive, sharply crafted tale about a planetary war.” –Kirkus Reviews
I received an eARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.
This highly imaginative world pulled me in from the very first page. The tension between the warring nations of Scarlatti is explosive, creating a dangerous, high-stakes atmosphere that the characters are forced to navigate. I didn’t want to look away from the pages for fear of what debacle the characters were going to find themselves in next.
This story is told from three different POVs, and watching their stories intertwine with one another was spellbinding. They each had their very own distinct character voice, and I found all three of them to be so intriguing in their own way.
It was great to see disability representation with one of the main characters in a sci-fi novel, since that isn’t something I’ve seen much of yet. Of the three POV characters, I did feel that Breaker was the most relatable and likable. His love for his family and desire to protect them after losing one of his brothers was great motivation for his story line.
Malani and Luka were both FASCINATING characters as well. Malani was physically stunning with her wings and white dreadlocks. Visually, she really came alive for me. Watching her struggle with mental health after the immense trauma she’d suffered was so heartbreaking, and Abby’s portrayal of that felt very raw and real. Luka was one of those characters that has such a tremendous story arc, and I found reading through his perspective so interesting. Outside of that, there isn’t much I can say about him without including spoilers.
There was some cool tech in this novel, but at the same time it wasn’t so advanced as to make the physical living conditions on Scarlatti easy by any means, which was something I really enjoyed about the novel.
I did struggle a bit with some of the words used in this story, particularly the slang and the words used to mark space and time. Some of the words were Spanish, others shortened versions of English, and they just didn’t flow very well for me. I think some of those choices may have been made as a nod to the fact that one of the cultures living on Scarlatti is human. One of the most challenging things about writing Sci-fi or fantasy is having to create the linguistic elements, and while I do think they’re a necessary part of world-building, these particular word choices just didn’t quite work for me.
I really enjoyed the pacing of this novel. I thought that it ended in just the right place so as to conclude the plot-line for this book yet leave me anxious to get my hands on the next book. This is a great debut novel, and I can’t wait to see more from Abby!
I really like the cover of this book! I love the red color scheme, since the division between the nations on this planet are based on the color of blood, and the three main characters are all “red-bloods.” There’s also a great nod to Malani’s wings and the cosmic world of Scarlatti that the story takes place on.
There was a very fun romance in this story. I don’t want to say between which characters, but there was definitely a lot of romantic tension going on and it added an element of fun and levity to the story.
About Abby J. Reed
Abby J. Reed writes young adult science fiction and fantasy novels that ask what if. She has a degree in English Writing and is drawn to characters with physical limitations due to her own neurological disorder called Chronic Migraine. Her debut novel, WHEN PLANETS FALL, will be published in April 2017 by Soul Mate Publishing.
Abby lives in Colorado with her husband and two fluffy pups. If her hands aren’t on the keyboard, they are stained purple and blue with paint.
1 winner will receive a signed paperback of WHEN PLANETS FALL, & Swag, US Only.
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4/4/2017- Jennifer Mary G.– Guest Post
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4/5/2017- The Not So Public Library– Excerpt
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4/6/2017- The Autumn Bookshelf– Interview
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4/14/2017- YA Book Madness– Guest Post
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Will you be reading When Planets Fall when it comes out next month? What are some debut novels that you’re looking forward to in 2017?