Book Review: Katya's World by Jonathan L. Howard

The distant and unloved colony world of Russalka has no land, only the raging sea. No clear skies, only the endless storm clouds. Beneath the waves, the people live in pressurised environments and take what they need from the boundless ocean. It is a hard life, but it is theirs and they fought a war against Earth to protect it. But wars leave wounds that never quite heal, and secrets that never quite lie silent. Katya Kuriakova doesn't care much about ancient history like that, though. She is making her first submarine voyage as crew; the first nice, simple journey of what she expects to be a nice, simple career. There is nothing nice and simple about the deep black waters of Russalka, however; soon she will encounter pirates and war criminals, see death and tragedy at first hand, and realise that her world's future lies on the narrowest of knife edges. For in the crushing depths lies a sleeping monster, an abomination of unknown origin, and when it wakes, it will seek out and kill every single person on the planet.

Release Date: November 6, 2012
Age Group: YA
Source: Review copy from publisher
Reviewed By: Madi B

After I read Tin Star I was thinking “Aliens? Space? Planets? OH HECK YES!” My compassion really went out for this book mainly because of the cover. My dad was saying they drew a circle on the cover therefore they’re trying to get people to associate the book with The Hunger Games. So my compassion went out for this book and I defended it! (You should have seen my dad when he found out her name is Katya) I felt bad for this book whose cover looked like a bad 80’s video game. (I’m not ALL 80’s video games are bad, just some of them) 

My attitude for the book started out “YEAH!!!” and just went downhill from there. I DIDN’T EVEN FINISH THE BOOK!!!! Now with me, that rarely happens. I’m normally a book-finisher not a book-put-er-down-er. This may be a side effect of by previous lack of books, but nevertheless it’s there! I tried hard to finish this one (I did defend it like I would The Fault in Our Stars) but I JUST COULDN’T HANDLE IT!

The first thing I didn’t love was Katya. She was kinda hard-core I guess but I didn’t CONNECT with her. (frowny-face) I really didn’t like the setting either. It was cold and detached. To me, that’s what the tone of the book was, cold and detached. I also didn’t like all the talk about submarines. Now, I’d be fine with just talking about riding in a submarine. But talking about EVERY SINGLE PART of the submarine. UHHHH NO! And the author used all these mechanical terms like I knew what they were, which would be ok but… NO ONE KNOWS WHAT A HALOCLINE IS! Or a rusocline! Or a Judas Box, Sonar returns, or a pycnoline! GAHHHH!

And are you ready for the WORST TRAGEDY OF ALL? NO ROMANCE!!! Not even the a glimmer of a HOPE of any romantic anything!!!! ULTRA GAHHHHHH!!!! But I when I went on Amazon reviews to see if everyone else hated this book, I saw...some people actually liked it. LIKE FOR REAL! Am I crazy? Do I belong in the nuthouse??? I tried so hard to like this book, but to no avail.

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