Children of the Comet
By Donald Moffitt
ARC e-book, 332 pages (paperback)
2015, Open Road Media Sci-Fi & Fantasy
ISBN: 9781497682948 (paperback)
I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. All opinions in this post are my own.
Torris is part of a small community that lives at the base of a huge tree on a comet floating through space. He must journey up the tree on a quest to receive a vision and become a man, and it’s there he meets a female, Ning, from a neighboring tree. She is hunting for food to save her family and Torris is shocked by the differences in their two cultures. After a scandal involving Ning, Torris ends up on a spaceship that has suddenly come into their orbit and must adapt to his rapidly changing future.
This book was just alright for me. I was pretty interested in Torris and his clan of comet-dwelling tree people and it reminded me a bit of Dark Eden (which I loved). They had an interesting culture and I also liked hearing about the wildlife that lived on the tree and in nearby space. I mean, there are creepy space-bat type things…which is pretty cool.
But then, there was a second plot involving people on a spaceship, trying to colonize, or rather, recolonize, our old solar system, and I couldn’t have been more bored. I didn’t really connect with the characters or their mission and there was so much science and space jargon that I couldn’t even follow most of what they’re discussing. I’ll believe whatever you want me to believe about space life and space travel – as a reader, I don’t need pages upon pages of facts (or what sounds like facts) and the science behind how this is done. It’s just not what I’m looking for. At one point they were holding a seminar and it was just all info-dumping regarding how life evolved in space, and probably a lot of other stuff that I didn’t pick up because I didn’t really read that section.
The two story lines do eventually converge, but by that point, I was too bored to really care. The story strayed so much from what I was really interested in, which was the people of the comet and how they lead their lives, that I wasn’t invested anymore. I didn’t look into whether this is part of a series, but it doesn’t matter because even if it was, I wouldn’t continue.
Mostly it just made me want to read Dark Eden all over again. If you’re into hard sci-fi that’s heavy with science and slow on plot, you might enjoy this book, but it wasn’t for me.