Series: The Evaporation of Sofi Snow #1
Also in this series: Reclaiming Shilo Snow
Published by Thomas Nelson on June 6th 2017
Genres: Young Adult, Science Fiction
My content rating: YA (Some very vague references to sex)
Ever since the Delonese ice-planet arrived eleven years ago, Sofi's dreams have been vivid. Alien. In a system where Earth's corporations rule in place of governments and the humanoid race orbiting the moon are allies, her only constant has been her younger brother, Shilo. As an online gamer, Sofi battles behind the scenes of Earth's Fantasy Fighting arena where Shilo is forced to compete in a mix of real and virtual blood sport. But when a bomb takes out a quarter of the arena, Sofi's the only one who believes Shilo survived. She has dreams of him. And she's convinced he's been taken to the ice-planet.
Except no one but ambassadors are allowed there.
For Miguel, Earth's charming young playboy, the games are of a different sort. As Ambassador to the Delonese, his career has been built on trading secrets and seduction. Until the Fantasy Fight's bomb goes off. Now the tables have turned and he's a target for blackmail. The game is simple: Help the blackmailers, or lose more than anyone can fathom, or Earth can afford.
The Evaporation of Sofi Snow is a fantastic blend of intelligent and unique sci fi that doesn’t get so technical that you get lost in the details. This is my favorite type of sci-fi: there are enough technical details to make it all feel real, but not so many that I feel like my brain is overflowing with it. For me, that makes for an altogether enjoyable sci-fi read!
What Fed My Addiction:
- All the mysteries. This book is filled with mysteries that get unpacked as the book progresses. Who are the Delonese and what do they want with humans? Who took Shilo and what are they doing to him (and why)? Who set off the bomb that almost killed Sofi? What happened between Sofi and Miguel in the past? Who is blackmailing Miguel and what exactly do they have on him? All of these questions kept me turning the pages and made the book feel like a very quick read!
- A unique “gaming” world. When I saw that this book was about gaming, I was a little worried. There have been several of those lately, and I wondered if Sofi was going to be similar. I shouldn’t have worried—this book is completely different than anything I’ve ever read before. There is a gaming environment, but it’s not exactly video games. It’s more of a real-world environment that can be manipulated by tech and by the players. I don’t even know how to describe it, but it ends up being a really interesting blend of reality and gaming. Only the beginning of the book takes place at the games, but I’m hoping we see even more of them in future books!
- Sofi’s complicated relationships. All of Sofi’s relationships are complicated. Her relationship with her mother is strained at best (her father died when she was a child), and she hasn’t had a lot of love in her life. The strength of the bond between her and her brother has made up for that in a lot of ways along with the friendships that she’s formed with her teammates. Then there’s her past with Miguel—which has tainted her relationships with other guys. I don’t want to give away too much, but I’ll just say that I loved the complexity of all these relationships and there were some interesting surprises.
What Left Me Hungry for More:
- Slightly abrupt ending. I thought that this book felt a bit like a half-book in some ways, which isn’t my favorite kind of cliffhanger. There really isn’t any resolution to any of the story threads, except maybe one twist at the end (which I had seen coming). I prefer when each book in a series has somewhat of its own story arc (not a standalone, but elements of the story that are resolved in each book), but that’s just me.
- The romantic connection. The book doesn’t focus a lot on the romance, especially at first, which I actually liked. But most of the connection between Miguel and Sofi happened in the past, so we didn’t get to see it. It made me not quite as invested in the pair, but I do really like them together, and I think by the next book I’ll feel more for them together.
I’m eager to read the second book in this duology (and kind of excited that it’s just a duology, even though I’m fascinated by the world that Weber has built).
***Disclosure: I received this book from the publisher via ALA Annual in exchange for an honest review. No other compensation was given and all opinions are my own.***
About the Author
Mary Weber is the multiple-award-winning author of the bestselling young adult Storm Siren Trilogy, and The Evaporation of Sofi Snow series (all by HarperCollins). An avid high school, middle school, and conference speaker, Mary’s passion is helping others find their voice amid a world that often feels too loud. When she’s not plotting adventures involving tough girls who fre-quently take over the world, Mary sings 80’s hairband songs to her three muggle children, and ogles her husband who looks strikingly like Wolverine. They live in California which is perfect for stalking L.A. bands, Comic-Con, and the ocean.
Mary’s debut, Storm Siren, was featured in the Scholastic School Book Fairs, and her novels have been endorsed by bestselling authors Marissa Meyer, Jay Asher, Wendy Higgins, CJ Redwine, and Jonathan Maberry.
You can also find Mary’s fun interviews in the paperback of Marissa Meyer’s NYT bestselling, CRESS, and in Jay Asher’s 13 REASONS WHY movie tie-in edition. Most recently, you can see her and her family as extras in the NETFLIX Original Series, 13 REASONS WHY.
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The mention of gaming immediately had me thinking Warcross (and even Ready Player One) but it sounds like this one really stands on its own. While I doubt I would be a fan of the ended (like you I like a more complete arc even within a series) I do like the sound of Sofi and her relationships with other characters.
Yeah, this one was really different—a pleasant surprise!
I was literally just looking at this book on GR, like, yesterday. So your review is perfect timing for me! I was kind of unsure from the reviews I saw, but yours has convinced me to enter the giveaway! I do like complicated relationships like you described, and the gaming sounds cool.
It had much more interesting gaming than I was expecting—very different than other books I’ve read.