Whenever you read a good book, somewhere in the world a door opens to allow in more light.
I'm just trying to light up the world as much as I can one SciFi/paranormal/fantasy/space opera/time travel book at a time.
Pax Novis... oh Pax Novis... how you have vexed me! I finished this book quickly but ended up deliberating for days. I argued with myself...pros and cons... I revisited some areas and kicked things around the ole noggin. I thought and debated and it niggled and chaffed... not literally, that would suck! No, the indecision felt like a blemish on my reviewing capabilities. I thought and thought until my tired brain hurt. I couldn't get away from thinking about it but it always came back to the glaring difference between what this book delivered and what it had the potential to be. I know, that's not a fair way to judge a book but... full disclosure... I was slightly disappointed, a smidge letdown. This was an entertaining letdown but a letdown nonetheless YET I remain optimistic. SO, please bear with me if this review seems fickle, I'm still stuck up here, straddling the fence.
This turned out to be a semi- sluggish SciFi/Space Opera about an intergalactic, winner takes all, case of hide and go seek. Did I just whittle the entire book down to a mere child's game?? Why yes, yes I did and unfortunately, even when all of its feathers were puffed up and preened, it wasn't much more robust. This might be due to the fact that the story took place almost entirely in a single locale, the spaceship Pax Novis. With such a flat, 2D backdrop, things felt cramped and stifling. The writing was decent and the characters were too, but there was nothing stellar about either. On the other hand, Pax Novis did manage to tick a bunch of hot topic boxes like Cira having two mothers, Riston & Adrienn being nonbinary and even Cira being Asexual. So, if those are staples in your genre of choice then this is a definite winner for you. Now, I myself love a good yarn that bucks the norm BUT here it felt too on the nose for my taste... like a sledgehammer being used when a scalpel was needed. There were even new pronouns made up to use as alternatives to inherently gendered terms. I found these new pronouns to be distracting. Granted, they weren't so obtrusive that I couldn't catch what was being implied but still, distracting is...well.... annoying. Then, just when I thought the book was hitting its stride, the last third of the book had my attention wandering. I found myself counting the pages, hoping it would resolve quickly, wondering which book in my formidable TBR pile would be my next conquest, what things I should put on my shopping list and
::dum dum dummmmm::
I thought about all the cleaning I had to do...
These gloomy portents were nothing short of bad juju... bad juju I say!! And now I need to smudge the room.
Overall: this is a light romp across the Milky Way. With potentially Star Trek-y vibes for the future, Pax Novis has the foundation for a fun, new series. Will I continue on to book#2? It's a firm...Maybe... although right now I am leaning more towards no. Way to commit right? Well, I'm still not sure the motley crew pulled me in or piqued my interests enough to commit to more time with them BUT I can see where it might, potentially, be headed. If it goes the way I'm envisioning it, Pax Novis can be a great Space Opera... which happens to be one of my favorite genres. SO, here's to hoping for the best!
*** I was given a copy of this book by Netgalley in exchange for an honest review ***