We’re now in the round of semi-finalists for the Self-Published Science Fiction Contest (SPSFC), and I’m reading and reviewing all of the semi-finalists! Check out my SPSFC Hub for all my posts and reviews for the contest.
Life on Planet Earth by Andy Gorman
After the Terminal Plague, humanity left Earth behind. Those left behind turned into a devolved species of homo sapiens. Now, those who have been living in orbit have decided to come back, training with simulations to be ready for the challenges back on Earth. Liam Stone is one who is training on the simulations to go back to Earth. Now, after his sister is chosen instead of him, he’ll give anything to get back.
Following Liam’s story gives readers a kind of survivalist story that reminds me of the survival video game subgenre. Liam is thrown together with several other characters on this adventure, dodging hostile pseudo-humans and trying to figure out how to live on an Earth depleted of resources… at least ostensibly. The characters develop quite a bit, though in mostly predictable ways. The survivalist plot is also predictable. Realistically, my biggest complaint is that everything feels kind of bland. Everything about the novel, whether the characters, plot, or world, felt average. It’s all “okay” but doesn’t really rise above that level.
Life on Planet Earth will deliver what one expects: a post-apocalyptic survival story. While it didn’t wow me, fans of the subgenre will likely feel right at home, with many things to enjoy with the plot.
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