- Rob Boffard.
- 400 pages.
- SFF / Science Fiction / Thriller / Fiction.
- My Rating: Hell Yeah Book Review.
In the far reaches of space, a tour group embarks on what will be the trip of a lifetime – in more ways than one . . .
For one small group, a tour of the nearby Horsehead Nebula is meant to be a short but stunning highlight in the trip of a lifetime.
But when a mysterious ship destroys Sigma Station and everyone on it, suddenly their tourist shuttle is stranded.
They have no weapons. No food. No water. No one back home knows they’re alive.
And the mysterious ship is hunting them.
I received a free copy of this book courtesy of the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
I’m stranded in space
I’m lost with a trace
I haven’t a chance of getting away
Obviously, I had to start the review with some very apt lyrics for Adrift courtesy of Iron Maiden and their song The Final Frontier (I’m sure you all knew they were Maiden lyrics when you read them).
The war between the Colonies and the Frontier has been over for ten years. During the war, Sigma Station or as it was known then Sigma XV was a mining outpost located in the Horsehead Nebula that both sides fought over.
Now, in the present, mining still takes place there but what was originally known as Sigma XV is now the Sigma Hotel and Luxury Resort. A holiday destination that caters for 10,000 tourists at any given time.
A small group of tourists take a tour on the Red Panda (a rather crummy tourist ship with no weapons that is built for short-range trips) for a simple excursion around the resort to view the Horsehead Nebula. Hannah Elliott is a young tour guide for Sigma Destination Tours, it’s her first day on the job and she is the guide on the Red Panda, the captain/pilot is Jana Volkova, a Russian and former Frontier pilot during the war, Everett and Anita Livingstone and their two children Malik (15) and Corey (10), Jack Tennant, a feed writer/reporter, a couple of newlyweds in Brendan and his wife Seema and finally, Lorinda, a retired and widowed elderly lady as the tourists aboard.
Whilst on the tour a mysterious ship of unknown origin appears in the sector and completely destroys the Sigma Resort, 10,000 lives gone in a matter of moments and leaving the ten people on the Red Panda as the sole survivors adrift, isolated and stranded in space.
The situation is dire, the mysterious ship is still in the area hunting the Red Panda and the only supplies available to the group are the limited and lacklustre resources that were aboard the Red Panda on take-off.
With the supplies dwindling and the situation worsening aboard the Red Panda the close confines of the ship act as a cauldron, simmering with contrary opinions and plenty of discord over what the best course of action is to take between the tourists when they should all be focusing on their survival and banding together.
The Red Panda as the setting for most of the book is integral to the story and while not an actual flesh and blood character the ship feels like a character, that poor ship goes through a lot of shit!
With only a small cast of characters in Adrift, the characterisation by Boffard is stellar, each of the group is individual, have their own history and are well-developed. Not everyone is who they seem, some have hidden motivations and all have depth. My favourites from the group were the trio of Corey, Lorinda and Volkova but all help to engage you in the story and invest you in their plight.
For me, Sci-fi is a very hit or miss genre but everything in Adrift just clicked together, there’s emotion, action, intrigue, a palpable feeling of suspense, a divisive group of characters, snappy dialogue and a damn good multi-layered story all packed into the pages of Adrift creating a thrilling and addictive read.
Adrift is claustrophobic, atmospheric and full of tension. It is reading time well spent and I fucking loved it.
Pre-order Adrift released June, 7th 2018.
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