Title: Blood Siren (Chronicles of the Orion Spur Book 1)
Author: Michael Formichelli
Genre: Scifi/Space Opera
Available: Amazon $2.99 (Kindle) 451 pages
Cylus Keltan wants nothing more than to stay out of the poisonous bed of greed and politics, but when his surrogate father throws himself from a mile-high window, he is forced back into the corrupt world he swore never to return to. With the help of Nero Graves, a cybernetic agent, he uncovers a plot to cripple the government and deploy an alien super plague with the potential to kill billions known as "Siren."
Can they discover the link between his friend's death and Siren before it's too late?
What I liked:
Where do I start?! Warring dynasties, political intrigue, murder and mayhem, cool tech, aliens, virtual reality - this is a scifi/space opera of epic proportions and multilayered complexity, with something for pretty much every fan of science fiction. The descriptions are glorious, the characters fascinating and very individual, and the various cultures both alien and 'human' each have a very distinctive and well-thought out uniqueness. The world building alone was A+ for me.
What I didn't like:
While I loved the in-depth descriptions and complex politics, it did make the story on the slow side for me (sorry, I'm not as patient as I used to be!), especially at the midway point. It was also slightly lacking on emotional punch (one reason I tend toward SciFi romance rather than straight SF these days). It ended rather abruptly, but since this is clearly labelled as book one of a series, this was not a huge negative.
This is not a quick or particularly easy read. It's definitely one more for the classic/epic SF fans who enjoyed books such as Dune or Asimov's Robot series, but with a shinier makeover. This story is what I hoped Jupiter Ascending would be like from the film's appearance, but everything that the film sadly failed to deliver. I'd read the next one for Nero Graves alone.