Release Date: January 9th 2018
Series: Unearthed #1
Genres: Action & Adventure, General, Romance, Science Fiction, Young Adult Fiction
When Earth intercepts a message from a long-extinct alien race, it seems like the solution the planet has been waiting for. The Undying's advanced technology has the potential to undo environmental damage and turn lives around, and Gaia, their former home planet, is a treasure trove waiting to be uncovered.
For Jules Addison and his fellow scholars, the discovery of an alien culture offers unprecedented opportunity for study... as long as scavengers like Amelia Radcliffe don't loot everything first. Mia and Jules' different reasons for smuggling themselves onto Gaia put them immediately at odds, but after escaping a dangerous confrontation with other scavvers, they form a fragile alliance.
In order to penetrate the Undying temple and reach the tech and information hidden within, the two must decode the ancient race's secrets and survive their traps. But the more they learn about the Undying, the more their presence in the temple seems to be part of a grand design that could spell the end of the human race...
Full disclosure: I struggle with sci-fi novels. I’m not sure why, but even the best science fictions novels are hard for me to get through. So, keep that in mind when I talk about the pacing of this novel.
This feels very much like a setup book. There is a ton of world building and explanation in the beginning, exploration in the middle, and then an explosive ending. However, getting to that ending, for someone who has a hard time with sci-fi, was tough.
I also feel like not a whole lot really happened, and the plot was driven by an extremely tentative “save the world” goal, but I say tentative because the situation didn’t seem all that grave and it wasn’t strong enough to pull me through two hundred and fifty pages of temple exploration.
UNEARTHED has plenty of good twists and turns, but they come up towards the end of the book. It almost feels like the authors knew where they wanted the story to lead but weren’t totally sure how to get there.
The main characters, while interesting and unique, were overshadowed by their almost immediate infatuation with each other.
Other than that, I was really impressed with the descriptive writing and action scenes. Kaufman and Spooner paint a vivid setting that reminds me why I loved their original Starbound trilogy.
If you like exploration novels, such as Indiana Jones (which UNEARTHED is marketed as similar to) and YA sci-fi, I would definitely recommend this.