Author: Rob Boffard
Number of Pages: 416 (Paperback)
Published: June 5th 2018 by Orbit
Genre: Science Fiction
In the far reaches of space, a group of tourists board a small vessel for what will be the trip of a lifetime – in more ways than one…
They are embarking on a tour around Sigma Station – a remote mining facility and luxury hotel with stunning views of the Horsehead Nebula.
During the course of the trip, a mysterious ship with devastating advanced technology attacks the Station. Their pilot’s quick evasive action means that the tour group escape with their lives – but as the dust settles, they realize they may be the only survivors . . .
Adrift in outer space, out of contact with civilization, and on a vastly under-equipped ship, these passengers are out of their depth. Their chances of getting home are close to none, and with the threat of another attack looming they must act soon – or risk perishing in the endless void of space.
A sightseeing tour from Sigma Station to check out the stunning Horsehead Nebula becomes a fight for survival for a group of tourists thrown together by chance. Just after their ship The Red Panda departs they witness a terrible attack from an unknown ship which destroys Sigma Station and leaves them the sole remaining humans in this vast portion of space.
Or does it?
For as the group try to work out how to survive, a ship is sighted nearby, and it may well be the one that just destroyed a whole station.
I loved Adrift. There was so much tension and imminent threat, and it didn’t always come from enemies outside The Red Panda.
This is a varying range of people thrown together with a common purpose, yet they don’t always have the same ideas as to how best to proceed. And, of course, not everyone is as they first appear. Suspicions give rise to tension and conflict within the group, and they end up discovering that the unknown occupants of another ship are not the only problem they face.
The characters really make this tale. Within the confines of The Red Panda, plenty of time is given to character development, and there were some of them I was really hoping would make it out alive. Their progress and their frustrations as yet another problem came to light make for tense reading, and that’s before you consider the enemy somewhere out there in space determined to destroy everything and everyone associated with Sigma Station.
I liked tour guide Hannah, who really is having the worst first day at work ever as a routine tour turns into total chaos on a large scale. She doubts herself and her ability to be the authority figure for this unique group of travellers, and I loved the way she gained strength, largely helped by the tough words and encouragement of another of my favourites, Captain Jana Volkova, the no-nonsense woman who had previously flown fighters in the Navy, and is flying The Red Panda as all the trouble begins.
I also liked Corey, a young boy on the tour with his family, and a spacecraft enthusiast who longs to be a pilot in the future. He’s so young, but wise beyond his years, and the way he deals with certain situations has a great impact.
I also can’t not mention another passenger, Lorinda. Capable, brave and pretty unflappable, Lorinda was a great addition to the group.
There is so much going on with each of these characters and their lives before this traumatic event, and I don’t want to give too much away and take the fun out of the reading, so I’ll just say that for all the decent characters there are still one or two with secrets which may prove dangerous.
I haven’t read much sci-fi, and I couldn’t imagine how they were going to escape their seemingly hopeless predicament. They have no weapons, food is in short supply, and the water supply isn’t as plentiful as it should be. Without communication to Sigma or to anyone back on earth, it seems impossible that there’s any hope of survival, and that really kept me turning the pages.
With plenty of action, excitement, twists and developments, and an interesting cast of characters, Adrift kept me hooked right until the final pages. If all sci-fi goes something like this then I don’t know why I haven’t checked out a few titles before!