“Mayday, mayday, mayday.”
A dishonourable discharge left Margo unable to find honest work on Earth. Signing onto a colonizing mission heading to a new world promised a fresh start. Or at least that’s what she’d thought.
Strapped into a crashing colony ship, she realized how wrong she’d been.
Reading this brought me to the conclusion that I don’t read enough sci-fi, and I crave it even when I don’t realize I’m craving it. Day 115 on an Alien World is an interstellar mystery/thriller set on a planet deemed hospitable for colonization by Earth’s inhabitants. It’s fast-paced, and has a cast of characters who are all suspicious to one another and the reader.
The book is written with a few timelines: once the crash happens on the planet, events that took place before the colonization team was even assembled, and day 115 on. These are not hard to keep track of, and much of the storytelling is done from the perspectives of different individuals, whether from journal entries, or memories of significant events.
There is a deeply seeded suspicion on many different individuals once accidents begin taking the form of possible sabotage, but these suspicions come from the mind of the individual whose timeline and perspective you are following at the time. It is up to you, the reader, to make assumptions and find probable cause based on your own over-arching knowledge of what has, and is, taking place.
I had a lot of fun reading this and trying to solve the mystery before the author did it for me. It’s exciting to draw your own conclusions and make a guess early on, seeing if it will stick, or if you ‘jumped the gun’ too early. At least that’s how I tend to read mysteries. There is just something slightly ominous about reading journal entries and logs long after they’ve been written. There is an underlying creepiness to them, as if you are reading the words of a person no longer capable of communicating why they aren’t writing new entries anymore.
One of my favorite aspects of this book doesn’t really have anything to do with the thrill of the hunt, though. I enjoyed reading about each element that was meticulously planned out in order to make colonization a successful venture. Each person on this mission has a specialty that renders itself absolutely necessary for short and long-term survival. The science involved in producing sustainable oxygen, clean water, and food is fascinating. This was just an extremely fun read, and I didn’t want it to end.
I would like to mention that this book was a Netgalley find. For any of you who regularly read and review through this website, you may understand how uncommon it can be to find a book you absolutely loved to the core, and even gave a 5 star rating to. Not saying the website is littered with ‘bad books’ but rather that in a way, you are choosing a book based solely on a combination of synopsis and cover, maybe a familiar author. There isn’t really any room for influence by peers or hype, unless of course you are reviewing a much anticipated release. I tend to gravitate towards the lesser known books, the ones whose authors I’ve never heard of, the ones that may not be getting requests by the hundreds, or thousands. So, maybe it’s just in my experience and requesting habits that finding a really wonderful read can tend to be uncommon. IDK. Maybe I’m ranting.
Anyways! I would like to thank Netgalley, author Jeanette Bedard, and the publishers at BooksGoSocial for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review. I was pleasantly surprised by how much I truly enjoyed the book.
If any of you are interested in reading 115 Days on an Alien World, the book is set to release on April 2 of 2019. You can find the Goodreads page here.
Thanks for reading! What science fiction books can you recommend? I’d love to read some of your favorites!