Friday, March 24, 2017

Ninth City Burning by J. Patrick Black



Ninth City Burning takes place around 500 years into the future where humanity is embroiled in a centuries long war with an alien race. When the aliens, or Romeos as they are called in the story, first came, they brought an unstoppable, reality altering power called thelemity. It seemed all was lost until humanity realized that some of their own could also wield this same power. Ever since their first onslaught was beat back, much of the technology has been related around thelemety and fighting the Romeos. However, after centuries of attrition, the Romeos have changed tactics and it could mean the end of Earth. 

The story is told from the point of view of 7 characters and each of these is narrated by a different actor in the audio version. We follow each of these seven, all from different background and vastly different perspectives on the conflict as they start to come together and try to save humanity. 

Overall, the story can be a bit formulaic and there are segments where you know exactly what is going to happen next. But the the multiple narrators and characters do keep it interesting. I hope that in the next book, Black manages to keep plot points better concealed and less trope-ish. A good listen overall and recommended for fans of coming-of-age sf/f such as Ender's Game and Hunger Games. 

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