Unearthed Review: Follow the Clues!

4/5 Stars

Wow, what a cliffhanger ending! It left me desperate to know more about the aspects that were unanswered, but I’m sure the authors plan to address those things in the sequel. This book is definitely for people who enjoy sci-fi mixed with a touch of romance.

What Worked Well?

Kaufman and Spooner definitely have a talent for creating sci-fi worlds and three-dimensional characters. I thought Mia and Jules were cute together, and each of them really demonstrated character growth by the end. At first, it does seem Mia and Jules are infatuated when they meet. But I didn’t have a huge issue with this, because their relationship develops into much more by the end of the novel. Both characters had to make difficult decisions in order to overcome challenging obstacles throughout. I thought Mia’s tie to her sister and Jules’s relationship with his father gave the two characters added depth and motivation.

The planet Gaia was an exciting environment. It’s ancient temples were full of traps, and scavengers roamed about, seeking treasure. I enjoyed reading about Mia and Jules when they deciphered the different clues and puzzles – although some of the details were difficult to fully picture in my mind. The authors also explored portal-jumping and the icy poles of the planet in addition to the interior temple settings.

What Didn’t Work So Well?

I withheld one star from my rating mainly because there were several chunks of the book that dragged slightly. I think the pace was sometimes bogged down by a lot of description or internal meditations from the characters. Of course, some internalization is important for character development. I just thought that sometimes there was a lot of it at once. The dragging mostly occurred when Jules and Mia were alone together in the temple, but the pace picked up again nicely when they encountered other scavengers. At the end, it became pretty exciting and action-packed!

For Kaufman and Spooner’s first trilogy, I enjoyed each new release more than the preceding one. I have a feeling their new series may follow a similar pattern for me. Can’t wait for the sequel! In addition to the Undying, I’m hoping we’ll get more of Mia’s sister and their home environment.

(A quick note for parents who may be reading this review – one of the main characters does use the “s” word rather frequently.)

[Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for providing an ARC in exchange for a review. Originally posted review on my Goodreads page on March 12, 2018.]

Spines that Shine

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