Author: D. Ellis Overttun
Length: 317 pages
***THIS BOOK WAS RECEIVED FROM THE AUTHOR***
The idiom of “don’t judge a book by its cover” does not apply to Universe: Awakening. With a blurry and indistinct image that has a few colored boxes and basic sans-serif fonts slapped on top, it’s no wonder that the content inside is practically pointless. Furthermore, while there was an “awakening” in a flashback, and the book takes place in the universe, I suppose the title means something . . . not that it’s apparent to the reader. In fact, as this is the first book in the “Terra Nova” series, I can say those two words describe it adequately. “Terra” translates to “dirt,” which describes the clunky “tell instead of show” style of exposition (imagine reading someone doing Google searches for endless amounts of pages). “Nova” translates to “not going,” which describes the overall plot (every single scene had no point, and there was no urgency to anything the characters did).
To be honest, I had a strong urge to stop reading after the first chapter (which was actually the prologue). The characters (which you never see again) in this section were loud and obnoxious. Unfortunately, the overuse of “all caps” and exclamation points for emphasis is rampant throughout. Not that any of the other characters were particularly interesting, had any motivations, or stood out in any way. The main character was practically incompetent, and the two “angels” were indistinguishable from each other. While human descriptions and idioms were used for the characters, none of them were actually human, thus creating a huge disconnect to the reader. For some reason, of which I have yet to determine, I forced myself to finish reading this book to the end. I was so mad with how bad this book was; I felt physically ill for enduring it.
So much was wrong with this book, I don’t know if I have enough space to cover it all. From the overt spiritual references of “auras” (essentially a cheap cheat to show character emotions) and the inclusion of archangels Michael and Gabriel, as well as an antiquated Catholic call and response (pretty sure they say “and with your spirit” instead of “and also with you” nowadays), the attempted fusion of science and religion felt forced and unnecessary. The punctuation had much to be desired, especially in the internal quotes, but even more so in the missing commas. Furthermore, while there weren’t that many homophone errors, the ones that were there were pretty egregious (not knowing the difference between “naval” and “navel” as well as “elicit” and “illicit” create vastly different meanings). Overall, I would suggest that this author stop writing any further books in this series until he sits down with a good content and proofreading editor and fixes the severe issues this book clearly has.
A book that wasn’t worth my time, I give Universe: Awakening 0.5 stars out of 5.