Pittacus Lore finished telling the story of the Lorien Nine. Now, he’s back to recount an all-new adventure rooted in the real mysteries surrounding Roswell, New Mexico, that will enthrall fans of Jay Kristoff, Amie Kaufman, and Brandon Sanderson.
We have waited generations for you…
Syd Chambers knows that there’s life on other planets because he’s descended from it. His father was from a distant world called Denza, and has been missing—presumed dead—for years.
When Syd discovers a device his father left behind that shows not only that he’s alive, but where he is, Syd must set out on a mission of his own. But along the way, he discovers a deadly, unbearable secret that could destroy Denza, Earth, and the universe.
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What I Loved
First, I loved Ashfall Legacy’s setting, a distant planet whose beings live alongside humans on Earth. The Denzans even have a consulate in Australia. I enjoyed going off-planet into the void of space and imagining new alien races and planets that Sydney Chambers, the main character, met as he traveled to his destination. Nothing makes the imagination soar more than taking it out of its comfort zone.
I also loved the idea of a space academy, which is Sydney’s destination on the planet Denza. Serpo Institute houses a student body of intergalactic beings that dedicate themselves to space exploration. That, along with common pop culture ideas of space travel, helped to bridge that gap into this alien world for me as a reader. Having some more familiar aspects made the unfamiliar aspects easier to understand and imagine making disbelief easy to suspend.
Sydney is on a mission to discover what happened to his father, which is an emotional plot thread. He barely remembers his father, and he and his mother always thought he must be dead since he never returned. New evidence makes everyone question their belief, though, and only Sydney can follow the trail that will eventually discover what happened. The final discovery is so touching and unexpected as only a family theme in a story can generate.
There are some great plot twists and turns along the way and evil creatures that I interpreted as resembling space dragons. I love this blend of genres incorporated to make this story the fascinating tale that it is. There is mystery and intrigue, plus a few thrills as the mission takes one dangerous turn after another to the point where the pages turned very quickly, and I couldn’t take my eyes off of the page.
I’ve already mentioned Sydney Chambers, the main character. He is 16 and is coming into adulthood at a rapid pace. When he found out that he is half-alien, half-human, that explained so much and opened up a world of possibilities that he desperately wanted to explore. Life on the run with his human mother, who was afraid that the aliens would like to take him away from her, gave him no connections and no sense of belonging that may have made him reluctant to explore.
But my favorite character had to be H’Jossu, a Panalax, which Sydney described as an undead Chewbacca. He exhibited all my favorite characteristics as the unsung heroic best friend of the hero protagonist. He sees everything as a fun adventure, loves and regularly refers to Earth pop culture, and is always the first to stand by Sydney and aid him no matter how dangerous the task is.
Reminds Me Of
I got a lot of Star Trek vibes and a few Star Wars ones as well. I like this, though, as it helped me visualize all of the story’s original elements, like the many different species and settings.
What I Wish
When the story begins, and for a while after, the dialogue read clunky – like a forced stereotypical teen way of speaking. I wish a typical solid manner of speech had been used throughout the novel, as I believe it is used later, once Sydney left the planet. The dialogue either changed, or I just grew to accept it as the story went on.
To Read or Not to Read
If you are looking for a story that will take you on a fun and sometimes quite moving space adventure, then you must pick up Ashfall Legacy.