Book Review: Hive and Heist by Janine A. Southard

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000446_00062]Synopsis:

Queen Rhiannon and her Hive have found safety on John Wayne Station, but with no way to pay their docking fees or Victor’s medical bills, their debts are racking up quickly. Thankfully, Gavin gets a job with American Space Ranger M3L-15-A, who’s hot on the trail of dangerous criminals.

The teens move in with their Ranger benefactor, but when they revisit their ship to pick up personal belongings, they realize their Alcubierre tensor jet has been stolen!

If Rhiannon and her Hivemates ever hope to leave, they must find and steal back what’s theirs. But far from home and among strangers, who can they trust? Will they be stuck on John Wayne for the rest of their lives?


About the Author: 88e422fe7c0c0a82390b93.L._V358721384_SX200_

Janine A. Southard writes and edits speculative fiction in between working on videogame projects. She’s attended more than the average number of universities, which she claims is a FEATURE. (“Oxford educated, but Californian at heart.”) She’s also lived and traveled in Europe, the United States, and Japan. Currently, she lives in Seattle with a husband (and a cat) and sings with a Celtic band.

My Review:

When I did my initial research into these books I found that it was a Kickstarter project, so right from the offset I was intrigued as to how it would all be put together. It appeared to be somewhere between an Indie book and a traditional publisher.

The story in both books was interesting and reminiscent of one of my fav series, Firefly – although I fear now anything in space with a band of happy-go-lucky mercenary misfits will kind of fall into that camp for me now. The pace of the books could have done with some finer tuning, but overall it was a nice solid YA Space Opera.

From a writer’s perspective, the POV jumped around a lot, which I found a little confusing and my allegiance to the characters felt strained with so many story arcs going on. I had to concentrate to really appreciate the story lines, which isn’t a bad thing, my epic lack of concentration skills shouldn’t affect a book review! I do worry a little about the genre here, YA is a fickle audience that tend to go in trends, although there are plenty of space YA books out there, there are really no break-outs that have influenced readers – there is something to be said about being a pioneer, however as the saying goes ‘it’s the pioneers that take the arrows’ but hey, they also get to plant the flags!

The front covers are purple and have a nice consistent brand going on, definitely will stand out against the other YA online offerings.

Overall I’d give both books a solid 3 out of 5 stars, could have been better, but is still an interesting read worth taking some time out for.



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