Author: Mindee Arnett
Publisher: Balzer & Bray/HarperCollins
Pub. Date: January 21, 2014
Genre: Young Adult
Rec. Age Level: 13+
Jeth Seagrave used to live a normal, relatively comfortable life, but that all changed after his parents were accused of treason and killed. Left in the dubious care of his uncle, who gambled away Avalon, Jeth’s parents’ ship, and, by extension, Jeth’s future, Jeth is left with few options. Jeth captains a crew of teenaged mercenaries who work for one of the most powerful crime bosses in the galaxy. The ragtag team is unassuming and remarkably good at their job: stealing unsecured metatech, a hot ticket item on the black market, that allows ships to travel quickly and under the radar of the government. Jeth saves every penny he earns and dreams of one day buying Avalon back from the man who controls him. His dreams are almost within reach when he’s offered one final job, use Avalon to travel into a dangerous patch of galaxy, where rumors of missing ships and strange happening abound, and locate a lost ship with invaluable metatech aboard. What seems like a straightforward, if dangerous, job soon spirals out of control when Jeth uncovers hidden truths about his parents, the government, and the technology he’s spent years hijacking.
One of the biggest reasons I picked up AVALON is how similar it sounded to Joss Whedon’s FIREFLY. And, I can assure you, it has the same feel. My only complaint? The action in AVALON is much slower. Honestly, it was too slow for me. I could easily set this book aside and never felt any great pull to pick it up again. I kept hoping that it would pick up, but, in my opinion, it never did.
Otherwise, I enjoyed AVALON. The characters are interesting, the premise promising, and the background compelling. But, without the pull of action, this book fell short of my expectations.
Would I read another book set in this world? Possibly, if it didn’t depend heavily on the events of AVALON… because I worry that I won’t remember enough detail from this book and it’s unlikely that I would reread this book first. If there was another book that could function as a standalone, I’d give it a shot because I genuinely do enjoy Arnett’s writing and the premise of AVALON.
This book wasn’t well-suited to my tastes, but I think there are some readers out there who will really love it.