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Mini Book Review: Havoc by Ann Aguirre

Havoc by Ann Aguirre

Title: Havoc

Author: Ann Aguirre

Series: The Dred Chronicles #2

Genre: Science Fiction

Rating: 5/5 stars!

The Overview: The Conglomerate’s most dangerous convicts have made the prison ship Perdition their home. And they will defend it… Perdition is under siege. Mercenaries have boarded the station with orders to take control of the facility—and execute the prisoners. Their commander is offering full pardons to the first five inmates willing to help the mercs complete their mission. Dresdemona “Dred” Devos hasn’t survived hard time just to surrender to the Conglomerate’s armored thugs. Leading a ragtag army of inmates, Dred and her champion, Jael, wage a bloody guerilla war of chaos and carnage against impossible odds. But no matter how dire the outlook, the Dread Queen never backs down…

The Mini Review:

Havoc has to be one of the best books I’ve read in a long while. The series is about life on an old space station (which has been converted into a massive prison), and the various inmates’ fight for survival. I liked the first one and honestly did not expect to LOVE the second as much as I did, but the direction Aguirre took with the story had me literally canceling plans so I could stay home and read it (sad, I know… but it really was that good). Havoc is an action-packed, page-turning adventure that somehow manages to have excellent character development and a compelling love story mixed in the middle. I don’t know how she does it. It also boasts interesting alien species and a whole bunch of really gnarly bad guys. Really, what’s not to love? I really wanted to make this a full-length review, but I don’t know what else I can say without getting into spoilers. :P

Havoc helped remind me why Aguirre is one of my all-time favorite authors – she gives you a little bit of everything. I’m still trying to wrap my mind around the fact that this is the same author who wrote the New Adult 2B Trilogy (which I also loved), Enclave (a fantastic YA zombie apocalypse trilogy), and the Corine Solomon urban fantasy series (involving magic and a whole lot of paranormal). Each of those different types of stories was brilliant, and I have yet to find anything from Aguirre that I didn’t absolutely love. The Dred Chronicles are no exception – if you like space operas, definitely give this series a try (or even pick up Grimspace – the series that first got me hooked on this author), and you’ll see why I’m excited to read anything she wants to write.

Other books you might like:

by Niki Hawkes

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Coming Soon: Breakout by Ann Aguirre

BreakoutTitle: Breakout

Author: Ann Aguirre

Series: The Dred Chronicles #3

Genre: Science Fiction

Release Date: August 25, 2015

The Overview: The prison ship Perdition has become a post-battle charnel house with only a handful of Dred’s soldiers still standing and now being hunted by Silence’s trained tongueless assassins. Forging an uneasy alliance with mercenary commander Vost—who is their only chance at escape—the Dread Queen will do whatever it takes to end her life sentence on Perdition and keep the survivors alive long enough to cobble together a transport capable of getting them off station. If Dred and her crew can win the deadly game of cat and mouse, the payoff is not only life but freedom—a prize sweeter than their wildest dreams. Yet the sadistic Silence would rather destroy Perdition than let a single soul slip from her grasp…

Waiting on Wednesday:

Ann Aguirre is easily one of my all-time favorite authors. I fell in love with her Grimspace series, and am beginning to love this one just as much! I love the concept of the story, the characters, the setting, and the action! I just started reading the second book in this series, and I’m going to have to pace myself because August is really far away! If you’re in the mood for Science Fiction, Urban Fantasy, or even Dystopian, The Dred Chronicles managed to hit the spot for all of them.

What are you waiting on?

by Niki Hawkes

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Book Review: Perdition by Ann Aguirre

PerditionTitle: Perdition

Author: Ann Aguirre

Series: Dred Chronicles #1

Genre: Urban Sci-Fi

Rating: 4.5/5 stars

The Overview: The prison ship Perdition, a floating city where the Conglomerate’s most dangerous criminals are confined for life, orbits endlessly around a barren asteroid. Life inside is even more bleak. Hailed as the Dread Queen, inmate Dresdemona “Dred” Devos controls one of Perdition’s six territories, bordered on both sides by would-be kings eager to challenge her claim. Keeping them at bay requires constant vigilance, as well as a steady influx of new recruits to replace the fallen. Survival is a constant battle, and death is the only escape.

Of the newest convicts, only one is worth Dred’s attention. The mercenary Jael, with his deadly gaze and attitude, may be the most dangerous criminal onboard. His combat skill could give her the edge she needs, if he doesn’t betray her first. Unfortunately, that’s what he does best. Winning Jael’s allegiance will be a challenge, but failure could be worse than death…

Perdition 2

The Review:

All I have to say is, Ann Aguirre has definitely become one of my favorite authors. She consistently delivers highly entertaining books, Perdition being no exception. I have now made my way through at least one book of her four different series and it amazes me how different they are from one another. She just knows how to tell a good story, whether it’s about an orphan living in underground ruins (Enclave) to a psychically gifted space traveler (Sirantha Jax), she makes everything fresh, exciting, and highly entertaining!

The Jax series has become one of my all-time favorites, so you can understand why I was especially excited to read a spinoff from the same universe. With its amazing characters and an awesome storyline, Perdition takes place exclusively on a giant, unguarded prison. It reminds me of that one Stargate episode where the team ends up on a planet that’s been similarly converted to a orbiting prison. You know, the one were they meet that crazy lady… Anyway I love the concept of that episode, and Aguirre presented her twist on that idea in a way that was interesting and new (figuratively speaking, of course… it is a prison after all).

In my mind, there is a difference between atmosphere and setting. I have had minor issues with this author’s settings in the past, but have always loved the mood and feel she gives us with what she does describe. In this novel she did a great job balancing the two which made the world-building my favorite element of the story.

This was followed very closely by how much I enjoyed the characters, especially the main protagonist, Dred. She was one badass chick. I loved her because she had to find and maintain an inner strength well beyond what normal human beings have to endure, and only seemed to get stronger from it. The side characters were all just as memorable, with that hint of mystery surrounding them promising fun discoveries in the future. I’ve always said I love how Aguirre creates relationships, and not just the one surrounding the love story. She manages to form a deep connection between characters every time, which makes me care for them that much more. That is the one consistency in all her works that I most love and appreciate.

Overall, this was an excellent first novel to a new series, and I sincerely hope it develops into a five-star one like the Jax series did once it gained momentum.

Recommended Reading: of course I’m going to geek out about this one to anybody who has already read Sirantha Jax, but I would also feel comfortable pitching it as a standalone series. I would mention it to anybody who enjoys either urban fantasies or space operas (doubly so for those who like both). Readers of her Enclave series would probably like these too, provided they don’t mind a little more, shall we say “adult” content.

by Niki Hawkes

Other books you might like:

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Coming Soon: Perdition by Ann Aguirre

8.27Title: Perdition

Author: Ann Aguirre

Series: The Dred Chronicles #1

Genre: Science Fiction

Release Date: August 27, 2013

The Overview: The prison ship Perdition, a floating city where the Conglomerate’s most dangerous criminals are confined for life, orbits endlessly around a barren asteroid.
Life inside is even more bleak. Hailed as the Dread Queen, inmate Dresdemona “Dred” Devos controls one of Perdition’s six territories, bordered on both sides by would-be kings eager to challenge her claim. Keeping them at bay requires constant vigilance, as well as a steady influx of new recruits to replace the fallen. Survival is a constant battle, and death is the only escape.

Of the newest convicts, only one is worth Dred’s attention. The mercenary Jael, with his deadly gaze and attitude, may be the most dangerous criminal onboard. His combat skill could give her the edge she needs, if he doesn’t betray her first. Unfortunately, that’s what he does best. Winning Jael’s allegiance will be a challenge, but failure could be worse than death…

8.27

Nik’s Notes:

I actually mourned when I found out that Endgame was Aguirre’s last Sirantha Jax book. I enjoyed it so much that I’ve already got plans to read it again within the next year (and with the current size of my TBR pile, that is a huge commitment). I had no idea she was going to do a spinoff series, and I think I actually squealed when I found out. This author is fantastic, and must-read for any science fiction and urban fantasy fan. In all seriousness, this is the book release I am most excited about between now and the end of the year…she’s that good.

Click on the cover below to see a full review of the Sirantha Jax series. Although the featured title is of the final book, there are no spoilers and it’s more my impression of the series as a whole. Enjoy!

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