Friday, July 20, 2018

ARC Review: Contagion by Erin Bowman

Author: Erin Bowman
Series: Contagion (Book 1)
Publication: HarperTeen (July 24, 2018)

Description: Perfect for fans of Madeleine Roux, Jonathan Maberry, and horror films like 28 Days Later and Resident Evil, this pulse-pounding, hair-raising, utterly terrifying novel is the first in a duology from the critically acclaimed author of the Taken trilogy.

After receiving a distress call from a drill team on a distant planet, a skeleton crew is sent into deep space to perform a standard search-and-rescue mission.

When they arrive, they find the planet littered with the remains of the project—including its members’ dead bodies. As they try to piece together what could have possibly decimated an entire project, they discover that some things are best left buried—and some monsters are only too ready to awaken.

My Thoughts: CONTAGION is a fast-paced, frightening science fiction story. Foster kid, high school student Thea Sadik has won a coveted internship working for Hevetz Corporation assisting Doctor Lisbeth Tarlow. They are at an isolated, cold weather base when a distress call comes in. The Captain - Dylan Lowe - assembles a skeleton crew of rather unprepared people to go for search and rescue. Among that crew are Thea, Dr. Tarlow, computer tech Toby, mechanic Sullivan, and pilot Nova.

There are already conflicts among the crew before they find out that they are on their way to Achlys - a planet like Mercury that might have a resource Hevetz wants to extract. Dr. Tarlow knows the planet because she was the sole survivor or an earlier disaster on that planet. She was a child at the time. Sullivan is concerned about Dylan's competency. Toby is an agitator who likes arguments and who favors their trio of planets leaving the Union. Nova and Sullivan are cousins. He got her her job after she washed out of the military academy because of a vision problem that has since been corrected. Dylan is single-minded about trying for a rescue since her father is at that base.

When they arrive, they find some corpses, blood trails, and a note written in blood telling them not to trust the kid. When Thea is separated from the searchers, she is rescued by Coen Lashley who is the only survivor of those they came to rescue and the kid they were warned against.

They soon discover that the victims they came to rescue weren't nearly as dead as they had believed. The rescue crew is soon being pursued by the zombie-like victims who are determined to add their rescuers to their number. There were chases all around the research ship as our heroes try to elude the new creatures as they try to get off the planet to safety. Along the way, more and more of the rescuers are lost. Secrets are also uncovered regarding the source of the contagion and what is trying to be accomplished.

The only negative that I have about the story is that there is a cliffhanger ending leaving me aching for the next book to find out what happens next. "I have a plan" is a horrible ending because I want to know what the plan is NOW.

Favorite Quote:
Something seemed to crack in Thea's chest.

The doctor hadn't denied it. She'd known all along what they might find on Achlys, the risks the planet posed. She knew and she'd done nothing, even had the nerve to tell Thea everything would be fine. She'd warned the team about harsh land and rough storms, but not what mattered most.

She'd damned them all.
I received this one in exchange for an honest review from Edelweiss. You can buy your copy here.

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