Tuesday, March 3, 2020

Release Day Review: A Pale Light in the Black by K.B. Wagers

A Pale Light in the Black
(NeoG #1)
K.B. Wagers
Release: March 3, 2020
Goodreads Amazon
The rollicking first entry in a unique science fiction series that introduces the Near-Earth Orbital Guard—NeoG—a military force patrolling and protecting space inspired by the real-life mission of the U.S. Coast Guard.

For the past year, their close loss in the annual Boarding Games has haunted Interceptor Team: Zuma’s Ghost. With this year’s competition looming, they’re looking forward to some payback—until an unexpected personnel change leaves them reeling. Their best swordsman has been transferred, and a new lieutenant has been assigned in his place.

Maxine Carmichael is trying to carve a place in the world on her own—away from the pressure and influence of her powerful family. The last thing she wants is to cause trouble at her command on Jupiter Station. With her new team in turmoil, Max must overcome her self-doubt and win their trust if she’s going to succeed. Failing is not an option—and would only prove her parents right.

But Max and the team must learn to work together quickly. A routine mission to retrieve a missing ship has suddenly turned dangerous, and now their lives are on the line. Someone is targeting members of Zuma’s Ghost, a mysterious opponent willing to kill to safeguard a secret that could shake society to its core . . . a secret that could lead to their deaths and kill thousands more unless Max and her new team stop them.

Rescue those in danger, find the bad guys, win the Games. It’s all in a day’s work at the NeoG.

I knew I immediately needed to pick up A Pale Light in the Black as soon as I read this description from the author when Harper Voyager announced their new series:

'The NEO-G books are going to be a departure from the grimdark futures and instead focusing on a moment in time when humanity is at its best. This will be accessible science fiction with interesting characters and exciting action. Plus, we’re going to have all the things I know I love reading about: found family, snarky siblings, explosions, and triumphant celebrations.'

And holy hell! It was so good!!! It's like a slice-of life military sci-fi story that follows a military team as they train for this huge annual inter-military tournament. I loved everything about this book! I especially loved the whole crew of Zuma’s Ghost and the whole NeoG! The NeoG is the space coast guard I never knew I needed in my life and now that I've read the book I need more of their story!

This book was a mix of so many things I love! There was found family! Ethnically and sexually diverse characters! Space battles! A huge tournament-style military competition! And so much more! Even better was that one of the main point-of-view characters was canonically asexual from the start and I loved that so much!

The worldbuilding and the history of the NeoG were superbly done as expected from K.B. Wagers. I was kept on the edge of my seat the whole time I was reading and I didn't figure anything out about the mystery and the big bad before the reveal. I'm interested to see where the crew of Zuma's Ghost go next and what other shenanigans they get up to. I have some ships I'm super shipping and I can't wait to see what comes of them. Fingers crossed that the established ones stay together as the series progresses.

I love when books come out of nowhere and hits you like a bag of bricks. I seriously loved this book so much! It’s definitely going to be one of my top ten favorite books of the year. You all need to go buy this book and immediately read it when it comes out especially if you love a good sci-fi book.

ARC provided by the publisher via Netgalley

  5 / 5 Stars

 Book #8: Library #2- Read Any Book

Book 3/12- Read a Diverse Book

My reviews of other books by this author:

Behind the Throne (The Indranan War #1) by K.B. Wagers

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