Book Title: Xenogeneic: First Contact by Lance Erlick
Category: Adult Fiction, 300 pages
Genre: Sci-fi Thriller
Publisher: Finlee Augare Books
Release date: March 2017
Tour dates: March 13 to April 7, 2017
Content Rating: PG + M (This book is rated PG+M because of mature subject. No explicit sex.)
Xenogeneic is a science fiction thriller about first contact with an alien race that lost their civil war and wants to take over Earth.
Dr. Elena Pyetrov’s father vanished in space 18 years ago while searching for extraterrestrial life. As an aerospace engineer, Elena travels into space to search for answers and continue his work. Her ship is pulled off course and crashes. She suspects extraterrestrial interference.
The alien Knoonk lost their civil war in a distant star system and fled to Earth’s neighborhood to hide and regroup. They seek a new home—Earth. Unable to live in Earth’s toxic environment, the aliens kidnap and use humans to genetically modify their species to adapt.
Surviving the crash, Elena and her shipmates are transported to a closed cave system where the Knoonk monitor and control everything. Elena tries to make a connection with her hosts and find ways to work together, but Knoonk leaders rebuff her and force the humans to submit as slaves. The aliens use illusions, distractions, and social experiments to learn from their hostages and keep them off balance. Resistance by captive humans brings swift punishment to break the human spirit.
While Elena continues to look for ways to cooperate with the Knoonk, it becomes apparent that there can be no compromise. The Knoonk want to capture Earth for their species. It is winner take all. With time running out, Elena must dig deep to uncover the alien plan and find a way to stop them before the human race faces enslavement and extinction.
Disclaimer: I got a free copy of the book as a participant of iRead Book Tours.
This is the first time I take part in an iRead Book Tour, and it is my first book by Lance Erlick. The book description sounded intriguing, especially if, like me, you love a good science fiction story.
The first third of the book was fine, but then it started to fall flat.
The whole book is written in a style that might work as a movie script, but to me, all the short sentences and rapid changes of scenes made the story feel disjointed. It was like watching a movie, with lots of flickering scenes, changing rapidly all over the place, but this didn’t work for me in book form.
After about 50%, I started to get bored, the book couldn’t really keep my interest any more and I might have given up if it hadn’t been for the book tour.
Sure, I wanted to find out what exactly was going on, but all the in-fighting among the humans just dragged on and on. Nothing much happened for the next 30% of the book, then it slowly got interesting again. And then it all happened at once.
I’m sorry to say that the ending didn’t manage to convince me. It all went so fast, with no rhyme or reason, and nobody is who they appear to be, and the explanations appear flimsy and not well thought out.
However, this is just my personal view. The idea is good, the questions the story raises are very valid ones (which unfortunately I cannot go into without putting spoilers). I’m convinced that, if compressed, and with a clear story line, this could be so much better.
About the Author:
Lance Erlick writes science fiction thrillers for young adult and adult readers. He is the author of The Rebel Within, The Rebel Trap, and Rebels Divided, three books in the Rebel series. In those stories, he explores the consequences of Annabelle Scott following her conscience. He authored the Regina Shen series–Resilience, Vigilance, Defiance, and Endurance. This series takes place after abrupt climate change leads to the Great Collapse and a new society under the World Federation. His latest novel is Xenogeneic: First Contact about encounters with an alien race aiming to take over Earth.