Book Review: Shatterworld Trilogy


When a colony of pacifists fleeing Earth’s wars find their new home, they realize it’s a desolate wasteland. Though life is hard, they believe this is where they belong, until they find out they are not alone on Shatterworld.

Note on ratings:

*           Horrible.
**         Below average
***       Average. Not good or bad.
****    Above average
***** Above and beyond

Content: **** (Content based off my personal level of squeamishness.)
The trilogy gets more mature with each book. The first one is very clean, the second one has a fair amount of violence near the end, and the third adds some hints of sexual things. These are not portrayed in a positive light and are things most people old enough to surf the web would already know about.

Originality and world building: *****
The worldbuilding is very good, and the idea of a pacifist colony coming to a new planet to escape persecution is a pretty interesting idea. The hexcrabs and chutree were both interesting species and felt quite alien.
One minor quibble is that after my trip to New Zealand and seeing what kinds of damage an invasive species can do, I thought the colonists were a bit too quick to start releasing animals and other Earth organisms on Shatterworld. I would have liked to have seen a bit more science where they figured out if they were releasing a potentially invasive species that could harm the local alien creatures.

Characters and their Arcs: ***
The characters were all unique, but I had some trouble relating to most of them. It may have been that Rejoice was young in the first book, and she’s also a very different personality. I think Ur-Veena was my favorite character.

Writing style and Pacing: ***
The writing matures as the trilogy progresses. I felt like the pacing was a bit slow, and often, the personal problems had trouble tying in well with the main problem. (The first book’s main problem did relate to Rejoice’s issue, but it felt almost tacked on since the main problem didn’t show up until near the end of the book.) The third book did much better at keeping the family issues tied into the bigger problem.

What I liked:
The worldbuilding and originality. I really enjoyed the hexcrabs.

What I didn’t like:
In the first book, some of the interaction with characters felt a bit off.

Is it worth reading?
Yes. It’s a refreshing change from the mainstream plots.

My Rating:



About Jessi L. Roberts

I live and work on my family’s cattle ranch in eastern Montana. I have a flock of chickens, a hyper golden retriever, some cows, and a few horses. I enjoy fantasy and science fiction and my head is full of wild sci-fi story ideas, some involving apocalypses and others involving aliens. I have been published twice in Havok Magazine, an imprint of Splickity.
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