- STAR RATING: 4.5 stars
PAGE LENGTH: 464 pages
- DATE PUBLISHED: July 12, 2022.
- PUBLISHER: Orbit Books
CONTENT WARNINGS: Cursing, death, suicidal thoughts, sexual content, body horror
- IF YOU LIKED THIS, TRY: An Absolutely Remarkable Thing by Hank Green
Thank you to Netgalley and Orbit Books for providing an ARC copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review.
When an army of giant robot AIs threatens to devastate Earth, a virtuoso pianist becomes humanity’s last hope in this bold, lightning-paced, technicolor new space opera series from the author of A Big Ship at the Edge of the Universe.
Jazz pianist Gus Kitko expected to spend his final moments on Earth playing piano at the greatest goodbye party of all time, and maybe kissing rockstar Ardent Violet, before the last of humanity is wiped out forever by the Vanguards–ultra-powerful robots from the dark heart of space, hell-bent on destroying humanity for reasons none can divine.
But when the Vanguards arrive, the unthinkable happens–the mecha that should be killing Gus instead saves him. Suddenly, Gus’s swan song becomes humanity’s encore, as he is chosen to join a small group of traitorous Vanguards and their pilots dedicated to saving humanity.
If there’s one thing you need to know about me before we get into this review, it’s that when Pacific Rim came out in 2013, I went and saw it approximately 238472394 times in the theaters. I adore that absolutely absurd movie. It is fun all wrapped up in a Transformers movie, dipped in a kaiju movie. Is it supposed to be taken seriously? Absolutely not. Does August Kitko and the Mechas from Space scratch that same ridiculous itch? 100000%.
Giant robots come to Earth (and all the human-colonies) in an attempt to upload their minds and kill their bodies. Basically, they’re trying to wipe out the human race in whatever horrible, violent way they can. A few of these robots betray their cause and actually switch sides to help the humans fight off the other robots. But these traitors need humans to act as conduits — basically pilots. Is this sounding familiar at all???
One of the main characters — the aforementioned August Kitko — is a depressed, semi-sort-of-famous pianist. He is frequently mopey, but does his best to do what he can to help humanity. He is a fine main character. He does the job. The other main character, and Gus’s lover/joyfriend, Ardent Violet, steals the show. They are a non-binary rock star with an outrageous personality, and a fabulous sense of style. I loved reading their chapters, and frequently found myself wondering when they would be back on page. Gus and Ardent’s relationship is a little insta-love, a lot of teasing, but they really do care about each other, and it’s a joy to watch.
If you enjoyed Pacific Rim at all, if you like giant robots fighting other giant robots, then you will enjoy August Kitko and the Mechas from Space. The fight scenes are awesome, the chase scenes are scary, the tech described is just phenomenal. I can’t recommend this one enough.
AUGUST KITKO AND THE MECHAS FROM SPACE comes out JULY 12, 2022.
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