I received this book for free from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Last Day on Mars (Chronicle of the Dark Star, #1) by Kevin Emerson
Published by HarperCollins/Walden Pond Press on February 14th 2017
Genres: Action & Adventure, Alien Contact, Fantasy, Fiction, General, Mystery, Science Fiction, Suspense, Time Travel
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It is Earth year 2213—but, of course, there is no Earth anymore. Not since it was burned to a cinder by the sun, which has mysteriously begun the process of going supernova. The human race has fled to Mars, but this was only a temporary solution while we prepare for a second trip: a one-hundred-fifty-year journey to a distant star, our best guess at where we might find a new home.
Liam Saunders-Chang is one of the last humans left on Mars. The son of two scientists who have been racing against time to create technology vital to humanity’s survival, Liam, along with his friend Phoebe, will be on the very last starliner to depart before Mars, like Earth before it, is destroyed.
Or so he thinks. Because before this day is over, Liam and Phoebe will make a series of profound discoveries about the nature of time and space, and find out that the human race is just one of many in our universe locked in a desperate struggle for survival.
Imagine a world where the sun begins to die WAY before it’s supposed to, and humanity is forced to leave Earth before technology has reached the point of interstellar travel. Now imagine humanity living on Mars in Terra-formed domes a mere 50 years after finding refuge among the red scenery. Humanity is once again on the move to find the Cinderella Zone where life can continue to subsist – and this safe haven is 150 years away. The ship that will take humanity away from the dangers of our dying sun is almost complete and with it Last Day on Mars has finally arrived. This last day is where this novel begins.
Phoebe and Liam are two best friends who are forced to be part of the final round of people taken up into the great space ship in the sky. During their last days on Mars they discover a secret that changes everything humanity knows about their history and the universe. Meanwhile, some pretty spectacular events occur, things blow up..things get pretty dangerous.
I went into The Last Day on Mars expecting a mediocre YA novel about a set of kids who discover a secret buried on Mars and some serious cheesy romance. Instead, I got a pretty epic MG science fiction novel with a tad of romance, but way more action and adventure than advertised by the synopsis.
Although I loved everything about this book, I am not sure if I am satisfied, either. I loved the characters, the dramatic action scenes and really fantastic story building that will make the next few books in this series AMAZING. However, The Last Day on Mars is also a lot of flash and action without a whole lot of intense plot creation. I was enthralled and couldn’t wait for the next big reveal (I read the entire book cover to cover in one sitting), but in the end I found there wasn’t a whole lot of substance that made me feel that “satisfied” feeling. I didn’t want the story to end just yet. I wanted more.
In retrospect, my desire for more probably means this is the beginning of a dangerously addictive series. Why isn’t book two out yet..?
In short, Last Day on Mars is about teenagers, but is so much more than that. The plot deals with adult issues and is way more exciting and enthralling than a hard science fiction novel..yet has lots of interesting scientific stuff. Emerson’s world building made me remember why I loved writing as a kid: the ability to create and form an entire universe complete with crazy inventions and political motivations that shape characters in interesting and unexpected ways. Last Day on Mars is created completely from the mind of a creative individual and it shows in inspiring ways.
This book will appeal to readers who enjoy science fiction, MG novels, novels about apocalyptic events and conspiracies, action and adventure tales and novels that just have amazing style and creative descriptions.