Title: The Blighted Stars (May 23, 2023)
Author: Megan E. O’Keefe
Series: The Devoured Worlds #1
While I was initially drawn in by the incredible cover art, I was pleased to find that the book itself is terrific too!
The main plot centers on the mining of earth-like worlds for a precious mineral named relkatite. Unfortunately, the unintended aftereffect of the mining process is a devastating fungal blight that effectively destroys the planet. Not ideal!
We’ve also got 3D printers capable of spitting out human bodies with a neural map/mind in tow. Well, that’s how it’s supposed to work. Sometimes the body misprints. Sometimes the mind cracks after you’ve been printed out too many times, or – gasp! – your mind is printed into two bodies at once.
O’Keefe dives into the unintended consequences of technological progress and humanity’s insatiable push to over-consume our planetary resources as we move throughout the cosmos.
I’m often overwhelmed with sprawling space operas, but the limited narrative scope of The Blighted Stars allows a few central characters and their motivations to stay top of mind. The character development is well-done and the swift pacing kept me on the edge of my seat throughout.
Overall, The Blighted Stars is an exciting start to a promising new series. If the cover art stays cool and the story stays compelling, I’ll certainly be along for the ride.
My thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for an advanced reader copy in exchange for an honest review.