Monday, May 20, 2013

SURVIVING EDEN by Adera Orfanelli

Publisher: Changeling Press
Date published: March 15, 2013
ISBN: BIN: 06259-02011
Science Fiction
Reviewed by Helen
Obtained via publisher


The father of Eden’s child is in jail and only paying restitution to the victims will ensure his release, so Eden enters a survivor game on an uninhabited world, determined to win the money and free him.

Brock Deltarin has also entered the game to win the money to free Jake, his best friend. Formerly the three of them were in a ménage relationship, but when everything went wrong and Jake was jailed Brock couldn’t forgive himself. Meeting Eden reminds him of everything he’s lost and wants back.

I like short books as they often pack a very powerful punch bringing characters and worlds to life fast, with no padding or excess words. (I like long books too, but that’s another book review!) This book, at only 17,000 words, sounded excellent. An uninhabited world to explore as the characters traveled through it, three main characters to have their personalities revealed and an erotic romance so some hot sex. The book definitely delivers on the sex, but it’s between Brock and Eden only, as Jake’s in jail.

I did not get a mental picture of the first world. We’re told twice people have been injured because it’s so dangerous, but the only danger we see Eden face is because of her personal situation, not caused by the world at all. No plants, trees, animals etc are truly described, and even when they stop overnight we only get a thumbnail sketch of the area. I would have liked much more world-building, not necessarily a big world count, but at least a couple of detailed paragraphs of the area.

The same with her home world. We hear about traveling on the tube but again I had no picture of it. Is it like the Tube in Britain? An elevator? A train? Or what. Even a few sentences of clarification would have been helpful. Also, I needed clarification of the only meal scene we see. I ended up quite confused about who was eating what.
Ms. Orfanelli writes excellent hot sex, although as I said before, they were MF scenes. Similarly we don’t have a chance to know Jake all that well, seeing him mainly though Eden’s eyes and as a focus for her actions.  But we do come to appreciate Eden’s personality and to understand Brock.

This is an objective review and not an endorsement of this book.

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