The Nyxia Triad #1. Author: Scott Reintgen.
Emmett Atwater isn’t just leaving Detroit; he’s leaving Earth. Why the Babel Corporation recruited him is a mystery, but the number of zeroes on their contract has him boarding their lightship and hoping to return to Earth with enough money to take care of his family.
Before long, Emmett discovers that he is one of ten recruits, all of whom have troubled pasts and are a long way from home. Now each recruit must earn the right to travel down to the planet of Eden—a planet that Babel has kept hidden—where they will mine a substance called Nyxia that has quietly become the most valuable material in the universe.
But Babel’s ship is full of secrets. And Emmett will face the ultimate choice: win the fortune at any cost, or find a way to fight that won’t forever compromise what it means to be human.
Hm… the plot moves at a good clip, never too rushed but fast enough to keep me engaged. The main character was interesting, felt realistic, multifaceted and alive.
Everything else was kind of a mess. The plot isn’t particularly original; at this point there’s been a lot of “for some strange reason all these teenagers need to compete to the death – or at least to the pain – in our “_____” Games”. It was a good plot device the first couple of times. Not so much on the tenth time. The whole spaceship expedition, the whole book, is centered around nyxia, a strange substance not found on earth; it functions as a deus ex machina for pretty much everything. How did we achieve faster-then-light travel? Nyxia. How is there gravity on board ship? Nyxia. Any mechanical problems in the world? Nyxia. Oh, and it’s also semi-sentient, been known to use people who were trying to use it, and is possibly a malevolent force. That we absolutely depend on, out in space. Sounds like a great plan.
And then there’s the insta-love in the second half of the book. If you can even call it that. Honestly, I didn’t even see any love there- just a slight attraction that could have been the trigger for friendship. And then they hook up for a one-night stand. Um, no. Most of Emmet’s friendships/enemies are much more fleshed out, intricate and interesting, and he even has a close female friend at one point. They could have just stayed really good friends, or they could have developed into something romantic, but no – he has to go for a weird Connection thing with someone random.
I read it cover-to-cover in one evening, drawn in by the premise, and (probably) kept by Emmet and the pacing; but still, it was mediocre at best.
Sexual Content: Some tension/anger when two boys realize a girl has kissed them both separately. There is one scene of sexual intercourse.
Language: 10 hell, 6 d***, 4 scatological terms, 1 derogatory term, 1 exclamation of God
Violence: Characters duel with simulated weapons, and their avatars die multiple times. During the dueling one character actually punches another to the throat, sending him to the hospital for some time. One character kicks another in the face. Characters fight simulated monsters; there’s blood, shattered bones, pain and death, but the simulation ends and all characters are ok. One character stabs another in the stomach, sending them to the hospital for some time. (minor) character has their ear cut off (a strange punishment). One character breaks his leg when he falls during a fight. One character is killed by