This Splintered Silence by Kayla Olson

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Lindley Hamilton has been the leader of the space station Lusca since every first-generation crew member on board, including her mother, the commander, were killed by a deadly virus.

Lindley always assumed she’d captain the Lusca one day, but she never thought that day would come so soon. And she never thought it would be like this—struggling to survive every day, learning how to keep the Lusca running, figuring out how to communicate with Earth, making sure theydon’t run out of food.

When a member of the surviving second generation dies from symptoms that look just like the deadly virus, though, Lindley feels her world shrinking even smaller. The disease was supposed to be over; the second generation was supposed to be immune. But as more people die, Lindley must face the terrifying reality that either the virus has mutated or something worse is happening: one of their own is a killer.

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I received this free e-galley from Edelweiss in exchange for my honest review. 

I first heard about this novel at Yallwest from a fellow attendee who was good friends with the author. It sounded so good, so I N T E N S E, and right up my alley. It flew to the top of my TBR for the year and while it was good it wasn’t all that I was expecting.

First and foremost, when I read that there would be a deadly virus running rampant on this research ship I was excited. I love eerie, uncontrollable viruses running rampant in any novel, but add a space setting and it’s like I’m a kiddo in a candy store. I went into this story expecting this to play a big role in the story and, for some time it did, but then it just…fell flat. The virus aspect of the story seemed to be moved to the back burner and that made the rest of the story a little anti-climactic for me.

I didn’t dislike this book by any means though. The characters were interesting, for the most part. There were moments where Lindley’s thoughts and actions didn’t coincide with the mature young woman we’re introduced to at the start of the novel. Each of Lindley’s cremates have distinctive, unique personalities which shine throughout the course of the story — and some of them are really funny, which made liking them even easier.

Along with the character’s the writing was beautiful and Kayla Olson has her own unique writing voice. I never read her debut novel, The Sandcastle Empire, but after reading her second book I’m debating picking it up off my TBR shelf. The one downside I found with her writing is that there were moments when the excitement just dropped off suddenly, without warning; it made getting into the groove of the story difficult and I often felt myself slipping out of the story while I was reading it.

If you enjoy coming of age stories, stories that that place in space, and mysteries then you should give this novel a shot.

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