Sanctuary

Featured
 
3.0
 
0.0 (0)
709   0
Write Review
51HTvQF3B2L._SX329_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg
Author(s)
Publisher
Age Range
12+
Release Date
July 24, 2018
ISBN
978-1534405332
Buy This Book
      

Alien meets Alexandra Bracken’s The Darkest Minds in this thrilling debut novel about prison-guard-in-training, Kenzie, who is taken hostage by the superpowered criminal teens of the Sanctuary space station—only to have to band together with them when the station is attacked by mysterious creatures. Kenzie holds one truth above all: the company is everything. As a citizen of Omnistellar Concepts, the most powerful corporation in the solar system, Kenzie has trained her entire life for one goal: to become an elite guard on Sanctuary, Omnistellar’s space prison for superpowered teens too dangerous for Earth. As a junior guard, she’s excited to prove herself to her company—and that means sacrificing anything that won’t propel her forward. But then a routine drill goes sideways and Kenzie is taken hostage by rioting prisoners. At first, she’s confident her commanding officer—who also happens to be her mother—will stop at nothing to secure her freedom. Yet it soon becomes clear that her mother is more concerned with sticking to Omnistellar protocol than she is with getting Kenzie out safely. As Kenzie forms her own plan to escape, she doesn’t realize there’s a more sinister threat looming, something ancient and evil that has clawed its way into Sanctuary from the vacuum of space. And Kenzie might have to team up with her captors to survive—all while beginning to suspect there’s a darker side to the Omnistellar she knows.

Editor reviews

1 reviews

Overall rating 
 
3.0
Plot 
 
3.0  (1)
Characters 
 
3.0  (1)
Writing Style 
 
3.0  (1)
Overall rating 
 
3.0
Plot 
 
3.0
Characters 
 
3.0
Writing Style 
 
3.0

In Space, No One Can Hear You

X-men Gen X (i.e. the teen version) meets Aliens-lite in this survival-in-space story.

Told in first-person past-tense from the sole perspective of a junior guard named Kenzie, the story takes place on a corporation-run orbital prison for juveniles. The book is a mashup of reliable tropes: evil corporations, a malevolent alien invasion, blind cult-like faith, insta-lust, brainwashy parenting, inexplicably super-powered teens, accelerated Stockholm syndrome…

What I Liked:

The brother/sister relationship between Cage and Rune was a highlight. Their personalities and powers were wildly divergent, yet still complementary. And their devotion to each other had solid premise, motivating them to care for each other’s romantic interest by extension.

The cast of prisoners is diverse—not only in terms of their personalities and backgrounds, but their ages, ethnicities, and superpowers. It was easy to appreciate the moral quandaries encountered by the escapees, and then by the survivors as a whole. The theme centers around shifting perspectives and questioning your biases, regardless of which “side” you’re on.

What Didn’t Work For Me:

-The prose is functional, but the page-count and joltingly variable pacing gives the sense of it being overwritten. We don’t reach more of an inciting incident until page 75, and after that slow start, scenes lurch on ahead almost too quickly.

-Kenzie was a difficult character to connect with, which proved problematic when one considers the entire story is told from her perspective. She consistently makes poor decisions—both personally and strategically. Her obsession with a particular manga series seems the sole contributor to her personality outside of her obsession with doing the Omnisteller Concepts corporation proud (and, by extension, her one-note mother.) While the manga and references could have been interesting, the general effect instead made Kenzie seem younger and more immature than her 17 years and junior-guard status would have suggested.

-It was intensely frustrating how everyone kept making it sound like an alien incursion would be ridiculous—despite the mounting evidence. This insistent denial went on for more than 80 pages, and it made no sense. The story takes place on the 50th anniversary of the day mysterious ALIEN PROBES landed on Earth and randomly distributed superpowers to the subsequent generation of humanity. For the life of me, I couldn’t understand how the idea of aliens was so far-fetched that all characters felt compelled to ignore the possibility.

-The story takes place in a compressed timeframe—over the course of roughly a day. Which is difficult to buy in hindsight. The amount of relationship building, both the romance between Kenzie/Cage and the inhuman-enemy-to-trusted-ally conversion between the prisoners and their lone survivor guard, occur at a pace so rushed it often defies believability—even after the minor hastening twist. And Kenzie’s switch in loyalty away from Omnistellar occurred awfully fast, given her lifelong programming.

-The suggestion that Sanctuary has some sort of advanced A.I. ended up falling by the wayside, as the prison itself showed no personality, intelligence, or capacity for communication—outside of one character’s ability to both physically and mentally bond with computers.

On the whole, this is the sort of story that would be ideal for those who looking for quick-burn romance and prefer minimal science in their science fiction.

Was this review helpful to you? 

User reviews

There are no user reviews for this listing.
Already have an account? or Create an account
Powered by JReviews

FEATURED GIVEAWAYS

Latest Book Listings Added

As Far as the Stars
Christopher is the sort of guy that no one notices,...
 
3.3
 
0.0 (0)
This Cruel Design
The nightmare of the outbreak is finally...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Big Red School (Clifford)
Clifford misses his best friend Emily Elizabeth every day when...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Finding Me by Kelly Gunderman
Tagline: Can you ever truly love someone who robbed you...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Don't Date Rosa Santos
Rosa Santos is cursed by the sea-at least, that's what...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
An unforgettable name… A longing to be invisible… ...
 
0.0
 
5.0 (1)
I Got Next
It’s game day! In this action-packed picture book from Daria...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
A Friend for Bently
Like all pigs, Bently loves to play in the mud,...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Great Pumpkin Contest
Mimi and Clara are neighbors. Both cats want to win...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Save Your Friends!
This laugh-out-loud adventure encourages family sharing and is a perfect...
 
3.5
 
0.0 (0)
Dibs!
Teaching your little brother his first word —dibs —is funny....
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Where Are You From?
This resonant picture book tells the story of one girl...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Out of Place
When twelve-year-old Cove Bernstein becomes the target of a school-wide...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Salvation Day
A lethal virus is awoken on an abandoned spaceship in...
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
Bobby Ether and the Jade Academy
When sixteen-year-old Bobby Ether is abducted and brought to the...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Startup Squad (The Startup Squad, #1)
Girls mean business in a brand-new middle grade series about...
 
3.0
 
0.0 (0)

Latest Member Reviews

A Place for Turtles
 
5.0
"Books like this need to be written and read. Turtles are beautiful animals, but they have a hard time..."
Superlative Birds
 
4.7
"SUPERLATIVE BIRDS is an interesting read. Each spread features an illustrated bird with a superlative, such as “smelliest” or “longest..."
Origami Bible Stories For Kids
 
5.0
"They really thought of everything. This origami kit is more than just folding paper, every part of it..."
Baby Astronaut (Baby Scientist)
 
5.0
"In a cute board book, older infants and toddlers are introduced to outer space and space exploration. BABY ASTRONAUT teaches..."
Lost in Outer Space: The Incredible Journey of Apollo 13 (Lost #2)
 
5.0
"Thrilling and epic, LOST IN OUTER SPACE tells the harrowing story of the Apollo 13 mission as they learn that..."
Lost in the Pacific, 1942 (Lost #1)
 
4.3
"LOST IN THE PACIFIC, 1942 is a true story of survival. During World War II, a plane is on a..."
Lost in the Amazon (Lost #3): A Battle for Survival in the Heart of the Rainforest
 
5.0
"LOST IN THE AMAZON is the incredible true story of a plane crash survivor who survived in the Amazon rainforest..."
Pre-K Extra Big Skills Workbook: Ready for Reading (Scholastic Early Learners)
 
5.0
"READY FOR READING is a great way to introduce reading to your preschooler. The tasks start off simple like finding..."
Rocket Man: The Mercury Adventure of John Glenn
 
4.3
"Not only was John Glenn the first person to orbit the Earth, a military veteran, and politician, but he was..."
Dream Big
 
5.0
"DREAM BIG is a celebration of life and achievement. Featuring simple language and bright, colorful illustrations of famous women, this..."
Baby Oceanographer (Baby Scientist)
 
5.0
"This adorable board book uses simple language to explain ocean-related concepts to older infants and toddlers. From the animals that..."
20 Recipes Kids Should Know
 
5.0
"20 RECIPES KIDS SHOULD KNOW is written by children, so it's appealing for children. The recipes include ones that any..."
Games of Deception: The True Story of the First U.S. Olympic Basketball Team at the 1936 Olympics in Hitler's Germany
 
4.7
" The Summer Olympics will take place again in July 2020, and all eyes will turn to Tokyo, Japan as..."
I Wish I Was a Polar Bear
 
4.3
"Did you know that polar bear adults live alone? Or that the only enemies polar bears have are other polar..."
I Wish I Was a Wolf
 
4.3
"In this beginning leveled reader, we are introduced to how wolves live. From packs to dens, short, easy sentences describe..."
Share Your Smile: Raina's Guide to Telling Your Own Story
 
4.3
"In this how-to book, complete with pages for readers to take notes and doodle, Telgemeier gives practical hints on the..."
Hello, World! Moon Landing
 
5.0
"This charming and informative book introduces the details of the first trip to the moon in 1969. HELLO, WORLD! MOON..."
Kindergarten Skills Workbook: Counting to 100
 
5.0
"'Counting to 100,' a Scholastic workbook meant for kindergarten preparation, does a fine job of engaging young children and making..."
Lost in the Antarctic: The Doomed Voyage of the Endurance
 
5.0
"LOST IN THE ANTARCTIC takes you on the doomed, yet brave journey of the ship called the Endurance and its..."
Horses: The Definitive Catalog of Horse and Pony Breeds
 
5.0
"Horses: The Definitive Catalog of Horse and Pony Breeds is a stunning book that any horse lover will want to..."