Tuesday, January 21, 2014

~Release Day Giveaway & Review~ Avalon by Mindee Arnett

Release Date: January 21, 2014
Published By: Balzer & Bray
Length:  432 pages
Review Copy:  ARC from publisher for honest review
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A ragtag group of teenage mercenaries who crew the spaceship Avalon stumble upon a conspiracy that could threaten the entire galaxy in this fascinating and fast-paced sci-fi adventure from author Mindee Arnett.

Of the various star systems that make up the Confederation, most lie thousands of light-years from First Earth-and out here, no one is free. The agencies that govern the Confederation are as corrupt as the crime bosses who patrol it, and power is held by anyone with enough greed and ruthlessness to claim it. That power is derived from one thing: metatech, the devices that allow people to travel great distances faster than the speed of light.

Jeth Seagrave and his crew of teenage mercenaries have survived in this world by stealing unsecured metatech, and they're damn good at it. Jeth doesn't care about the politics or the law; all he cares about is earning enough money to buy back his parents' ship, Avalon, from his crime-boss employer and getting himself and his sister, Lizzie, the heck out of Dodge. But when Jeth finds himself in possession of information that both the crime bosses and the government are willing to kill for, he is going to have to ask himself how far he'll go to get the freedom he's wanted for so long.

Avalon is the perfect fit for teens new to sci-fi as well as seasoned sci-fi readers looking for more books in the YA space-and a great match for fans of Joss Whedon's cult hit show Firefly.

  Avalon is such a huge leap from the Mindee Arnett novel that made me fall for her writing, but it is the type of thing that will bring me back for more.  I am not a hard core sci-fi girl but when done right I do enjoy them and there was so much to enjoy with Avalon.  The space aspect of everything was actually fun and Arnett made it feel natural, real.  It's easy to see the talent in an author when they can so easily switch between genres and maintain an audience in both.

  Maybe it is due to the fact that I do not often linger in sci-fi often but I found the story unique in its own way.  The fact that this was a group of teens banded together, each for reasons of their own, needing something or a place to be and honestly their differences make an amazing team.  For most of the book I really enjoyed the interaction between everyone.  I would be lying if I said there was a wonderful pacing because there were a few times that the story plateaued a it but Arnett more than made up for it in action and progression at other times.  The times that it slowed there was reason, but it also left me hanging and wanting to know what happened next.  There were things that I saw coming and some things that freaking blew me right out of the water but by the end I was basically begging for more.

  Jeth was not mind blowing to start but he was a sturdy character.  Now when I say to start, I mean that he really did grow on me and was seriously wonderful by the end.  Jeth may be a mercenary but he takes what he does and does the jobs because he is working toward a greater purpose; the freedom of him and his sister, along with their deceased parents ship Avalon.  He is definitely the kind of guy that wants what is best for those he cares about and is not beyond doing the right things, if he is given proof that it is the right thing.  That being said he is not the person that believes everything just because someone said so and even more so if he knows it could be wrong.  I do not know if it was because he was a guy or if it was just his character but some of his thoughts made me smile and brought out some realism.  However, though his positive attributes and strengths did make him easy to read but I still had a hard time loving him because I never fully connected with him.

  There is little room in this action, sci-fi novel for romance but Arnett managed to put the perfect little amount in.  I had expected there to be a little more but then I guess there was the possibility that I would have complained about too much romance.  Sierra brought something to the story and the interactions between her and Jeth were wonderful.  There was an attraction but they didn't fall and become completely infatuated with each other.  Yes, their interactions were fun but they both had plans and things to accomplish.  At times it was as if the chemistry between them was a plan by one or the other, to accomplish the ultimate ending that they wanted.  However, there was a sign and a few happenings that proved otherwise, proved that there was something between them that they both tried to hold back on.  I was happy that romance was kept to a minimum in the end.  Arnett instead focused on the story that was unfolding and only adding in the necessary romance.

  Avalon ended spectacularly and I am left waiting for the next installment.  Admittedly the start was a little slow, but with Arnett's creative writing and a burst of action and suspense, the book took off. With it's sci-fi plot and a uniquely written plot, I am going to have to highly recommend this read to lovers of the sci-fi genre.  

"I get it." Jeth patted her arm, the awkwardness returning.  It was funny, considering how physically intimate the two of them often were while working jobs.  Then again, in his experience, that kind of thing was a lot easier than opening yourself up.

  Jeth frowned.  It did seem like the ship had just appeared, but then again, neither of them had been paying attention to the front window.  Still, the ship had been right on top of them before Avalon's proximity alarm had gone off.

"Are they surrendering?" Shady asked from behind Jeth.
"I guess."
"Can I shoot 'em?"
Tempting. . . . "Uh, no."

  To his surprise, her annoyed expression made him want to laugh.  It reminded him a bit if Viggo when Jeth had accidentally stepped on the cat's tail    pissed off but incredibly cute in a fearsome, fuzzy sorta way. 
About the Author

Mindee Arnett is the author of one other book for teens,The Nightmare Affair. She lives on a horse farm in Ohio with her husband, two kids, a couple of dogs, and an inappropriate number of cats. Her dream home, though, is aboard a spaceship.

Find Her:

Good Luck everyone!!

**Note:  This is a release day giveaway & sponsored by the 
publisher/author.  It is release wide giveaway.


  1. I am really interested in reading this. I like the thought of an in space book, I haven't read one yet. I will admit the kinda slow parts scare me cause they take forever to get through for me lol. But I know how much you loved Mindee's other books and her writing, I will put it on my to buy list. Thanks for the review :)

  2. I'm glad you enjoyed it! I agree, Arnett managed to balance the romance and the plot very well, and it was just the right amount of me. Sometimes romance overshadows the action/sci-fi plots, and I hate it! I'm also excited for the sequel! Cannot wait.


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