On the Horizon – rubicon (J.S. Dewes)

Ahoy there me mateys!  I received this sci-fi from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  Here be me honest musings . . .

Title: rubicon
Author: J.S. Dewes
Publisher: Macmillian/Tor-Forge
Publication Date: TOMORROW!! (paperback & e-book)
ISBN: 978-1250851239
Source:  NetGalley

I love clone novels so I was excited to pick this up.  Machines are at war with humans.  The humans are not winning but with clone technology they are trying to turn the tide.  Adrienne Valero is a sergeant serving in the military’s expendable 802nd unit.  She has died 96 times and just wants to die for good next time.  However, the clone technology makes the user effectively immortal and, frankly, a bit crazy.

When Adrienne is transferred to an elite special forces group, she is grateful for the chance to stay in her current shell for a while.  But PTSD is taking its toll.  When Adrienne is assigned a new “rubicon” AI interface she doesn’t trust it.  But as she settles into her new assignment, the AI becomes essential to her survival and humanity.  As Adrienne learns what it is like to live again, she is drawn into confrontation with a human menace that might destroy them all for good.

I adored the set-up for the novel and how the 802nd unit worked.  I also enjoyed Adrienne’s adjustment to her new ship, crew, and AI.  While I enjoyed the majority of the characters and how Adrienne combats her PTSD, I found the plot to be the weak part of the novel.  I did not like the bad guy at all and thought his motivation was both short sighted and nonsensical.  Adrienne should have caught on way sooner.  I also did not like the “reveal” of how the machines were created.  The novel started to fail for me after the climax when the big bad tries to take over.  It was too much drama and action and felt rushed.  Also the plot of this whole section didn’t work for me.  And the ending made me angry.  I thought this was a standalone and was very disappointed with the last couple of pages.  If there is a sequel, I am not sure how the author can make it work.

This doesn’t walk the plank because of how much I enjoyed the beginning and the characters overall.  But I hesitate to recommend it to another reader unless I know there is going to be future explanation for the downer of an ending.  Arrr!

Goodreads has this to say about the novel:

Sergeant Adrienne Valero wants to die. She can’t.

After enduring a traumatic resurrection for the ninety-sixth time, Valero is reassigned to a special forces unit and outfitted with a cutting-edge virtual intelligence aid. They could turn the tide in the war against intelligent machines dedicated to the assimilation, or destruction, of humanity.

When her VI suddenly achieves sentience, Valero is drawn into the machinations of an enigmatic major who’s hell-bent on ending the war—by any means necessary.

To visit the author’s website go to:
J.S. Dewes – Author

To buy the novel please visit:
rubicon – Book

To add to Goodreads go to:
Yer Ports for Plunder List

Previous Log Entries for this Author
the last watch – Book 1 (Captain’s Log – Sci-Fi)


2 thoughts on “On the Horizon – rubicon (J.S. Dewes)

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