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Zenith Book Review

Happy Monday Everyone :)

I hope you all had a great weekend, and that the month of March is off to a great start for you all.

Today I'm here to share a book review for a book that's been extremely hyped ever since it was first announced, and that of course is Zenith by Sasha Alsberg and Lindsay Cummings.

Zenith by Sasha Alsberg and Lindsay Cummings:

Source: Library

Publisher: Harlequin Teen

Publication Date: January 16th, 2018

Genre: Young Adult/Science Fiction


Most know Androma Racella as the Bloody Baroness, a powerful mercenary whose reign of terror stretches across the Mirabel Galaxy. To those aboard her glass starship, Marauder, however, she's just Andi, their friend and fearless leader.

But when a routine mission goes awry, the Marauder's all-girl crew is tested as they find themselves in a treacherous situation and at the mercy of a sadistic bounty hunter from Andi's past.

Meanwhile, across the galaxy, a ruthless ruler waits in the shadows of the planet Xen Ptera, biding her time to exact revenge for the destruction of her people. The pieces of her deadly plan are about to fall into place, unleashing a plot that will tear Mirabel in two.

Andi and her crew embark on a dangerous, soul-testing journey that could restore order to their shipor just as easily start a war that will devour worlds. As the Marauder hurtles toward the unknown, and Mirabel hangs in the balance, the only certainty is that in a galaxy run on lies and illusion, no one can be trusted.

******synopsis from goodreads*****

My Review:

I don't think its possible to be a part of the young adult book community without having heard of this book. For anyone unfamiliar, Zenith was written by a writing team that includes Sasha Alsberg, a popular booktuber on Youtube, who's gained a huge following over the last few years. And because of that following, this book has been super hyped ever since it's conception, and yet the reviews really seem to be divided down the middle. Every one seems to either love it or hate it, and I was curious to see for myself which part of the spectrum I would be on.

Now I want to preface this review by stating that I don't normally read youtuber's books. I've never picked up Zoella's, or Joey's or any of the other huge youtuber's books, as I'm not generally a fan of anyone getting a book deal just because of their name. However, I didn't have this same issue with Zenith, since I figured that Sasha is a booktuber, and has spent years analyzing and reviewing other books, and that she would be coming to her debut as an author with a lot more book experience than most other Youtuber's have. As well, Lindsay Cummings is an author that has been on my radar for quite some time, and I've been really wanting to pick up a book by her. However, I've heard that her other YA duology, The Murder Complex, is quite gruesome, and I didn't think it would be my type of read. Zenith seemed like a book that I might enjoy from the synopsis, but I decided to order it from my library rather than rushing out to buy it, just in case I ended up not really enjoying it.

After finishing it a couple of days ago, I had so many thoughts swimming through my mind that it was hard to get it all laid out into a proper review. Zenith is definitely not without its faults, and it definitely wasn't what I'd call an amazing read. On the other hand though, I didn't think it was as bad as so many others have stated it is, and so I'm going to forewarn that this review is going to be quite lengthy as I really want to touch on everything I did and did not like about it.

Let's start with the positive:

What I Liked About It:

For starters, I thought that Lindsay and Sasha's writing blended beautifully, and I'd never have know it was written by co-authors by the writing itself. There were no passages that felt different from the others, and I think this is a pretty impressive feat considering. I also really enjoyed the space setting, I'm a big Star Wars fan, and so I'm always interested in Sci Fi books that take place among different planetary systems and whatnot. I also enjoyed the premise of the story, and I think the idea behind this book is really intriguing. Although I wasn't a huge fan of the numerous POV's (which I'll get to in the next section), I did appreciate that each chapter was only written from one viewpoint, as this helped keep the numerous characters straight in my mind, and wasn't nearly as confusing as it could be. The story itself was quite enjoyable, and the emphasis on girl power, and standing up for what you believe in, and for  those who mean something to you was really well done, and was probably one of my favorite parts of the book. And I definitely have to mention the ending! Wow, this book goes out with a bang, and my mind was reeling from everything that's revealed. While I had guessed at a couple of the plot twists, I still was quite shocked the way everything went down, and how well put together the final scenes were. 

Now let's move onto what I didn't like:

As I briefly mentioned before, I'm not a fan of a book having numerous POV's. I'm totally okay with two, or even three or so, but any more than that is just confusing, and most of the time completely unnecessary. I absolutely hated The Fifth Wave when I read it, and that was my main issue with it. I can't stand when a book jumps through so many points of view that you almost have to keep a diagram to keep track of who's who, and while this one wasn't nearly as bad, it still felt like they could have cut out one or more point of view to make the pacing smoother. And speaking of pacing, this book was way too long. Of the 534 pages, it felt like a good hundred could have been eliminated, and it wouldn't have affected the overall story. It took me quite awhile to get through this, even with the short chapters, and that was mainly because certain parts of the book lagged, and it felt like certain chapter's were unnecessary to the plot.  

Another main issue I had with this book was with the characters themselves. I honestly wasn't a fan of any of the character's introduced throughout the story, and I really didn't care what truly happened to any of them. While backstory is revealed on several, it still wasn't enough to redeem any of them in my eyes, and I definitely didn't feel that I was able to relate or connect to any of them. As everyone knows, two of the biggest components of a book are the characters and the setting, and while I really did enjoy the setting, and the numerous planets and systems mentioned (as I stated above), I felt it fell short of what it could have been. When you're dealing with an immense setting like a planetary system, really the author's imagination is the only restriction, and I really wanted to see more. While the reader is given glimpses of a few different planets, my sci fi loving heart wanted more, and I wish this has been done a little bit better. I have one final issue I want to touch on before concluding, and it's a plot point that I was just not okay with. In trying to refrain as spoiler free as possible, all I'm going to say is that Zenith includes a rape scene. I felt this was completely handled in a way that was just not okay for me, and there isn't much resolution of what goes down in the way it's treated throughout the rest of the story. If rape is a trigger for any of you, I recommend you picking this one up with extreme caution, as I wasn't prepared for, or expecting it in the slightest.

So, in conclusion, my feelings about Zenith can pretty much be summed up with the statement "it's not terrible, but it's also not great." I didn't dislike it enough to state that I won't read the upcoming sequel, but I also didn't love it enough to state that I definitely will read the upcoming sequel. Overall, it's not a bad book, and it'll be interesting to see where the authors go from here, with the crazy way the first book ended, and I think there's much potential for this series in the future. However, my numerous issues with the pacing, POV's, characters, and the presence of a rape scene definitely have to be figured in to my overall rating, and so I rated it as three out of five stars, instead of the four or five star read it may have been.

Final rating: ⭐⭐⭐

Is Zenith over hyped? Honestly? Yes, but then again so are a lot of new YA releases that aren't written by book tubers. I don't foresee this one being a reread for me in the future, but I'm not disappointed I took the chance on reading it at least once.

I thank you guys all for reading, and I'm interested to hear your thoughts if you've taken the time to read Zenith. 

Have a great rest of your day, and I'll see you all again on Wednesday for another book review.

This is not a sponsored post. All thoughts and opinions are my own. The photo does not belong to me, and all rights to the respective owners. 


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