Glow Book 1: Potency by Aubrey Hadley


Glow: Book I, Potency by Aubrey Hadley

699 Pages

Young Adult/Science Fiction

Published by Ruby & Topaz Publishing

Due for Publication in 2020

This book has since had it’s publication date pushed back in order to fix some of the issues possibly mention in the following review. This review may not be relevant to the new edition.

My rating: ⭐ ⭐

I received a copy of this book from the publisher, Ruby & Topaz Publishing, and the author via netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Actual rating of 2.5

Harper is seventeen years old, all she wants to do is play soccer with her friends and have a life, but her extremely strict mother won’t hear of it. When the Maasai Mara Sleeping Syndrome hits a homeless shelter in New York, Harper’s mother goes even more bananas with her strict rules. It isn’t until Harper comes across a strange being in the desert that she starts to think maybe she should be listening to said mother, except she doesn’t, and ends up being separated from her family when the CDC locks down her small neighbourhood in Reno. She is separated from her family and friends, and people are dying all around her, she knows there’s something wrong, but can’t figure it out. She’s still terrified of the thing she saw in the desert, and is worrying about her sister, Olivia, and her friends who are trapped in the quarantine zone. What happens next turns Harper’s life upside down, everything she thought she knew was wrong, and this is just the beginning…

Rating this book was really hard. I REALLY enjoyed the first part of the book where the Sleeping Syndrome was making a comeback and people were getting worried, I absolutely loved the story in the beginning. It was so riveting and I was glued to the page, I struggled putting the book down in order to get some sleep. So I was pretty disappointed when the story lost it’s fast moving pace when Harper ends up in an Alien base. This is where things should have gotten even more interesting, but they really didn’t. The story sort of took a slow backwards decent after the initial build up.

The story had incredibly interesting ideas, but I just felt that they weren’t executed very well. Once Harper gets to the base of Ki, things really slowed down, and it was quite a hard slog to get through the story. It begins cataloguing absolutely everything that Harper and the other characters that we meet, go through. I felt that this wasn’t really necessary in order to world build, as I felt that we were more told about the world, than shown it from Harper’s perspective. Obviously we were shown some of it from Harper, but something just didn’t feel right in the world building aspect for me, and I’m having trouble putting my finger on it. As I said, the story had super interesting ideas, but they were kinda lost in the droning of the unnecessary rundown of Harper’s days.

Harper seemed like a gutsy character at the start, but she became so accepting when on the base of Ki, I’m wondering whether it was because of the memory erasing, or the fact that the people she meets in Ki acted like more of a caring family to her. It was so easy to dismiss her family on Earth, and besides Olivia, I can understand why that was. So it’s not totally unbelievable that she had no faith in them, because she didn’t in the beginning anyway. She did seem to settle into and accept the whole human/ancient hybrid theory, but I guess it’s hard to ignore when your entire appearance changes. She feels that it would be so much easier to just accept her life on the base than try to attempt getting back to Earth, I feel like there should have been a bit more warring within herself at this point, but that’s just my opinion.

I had this underlying feeling, mainly through reading experience, that everything was not as it first appeared on the Base of Ki, but this wasn’t exactly illustrated throughout the story, just the couple of characters who weren’t happy with their lives there. I feel like more emphasis needed to be put on the whole “something’s not right with this picture” feeling that the story TRIES to give you, but ends up failing. If it were not for my prior experience with the whole “obviously there has to be something wrong here” thing, I may not have continued as I wouldn’t have felt like there was something to be resolved. The story devolved from a fast paced page turner into a slow jaunt through a sunny meadow. The sense of urgency in the story just wasn’t there, or if it was, it really did not come through at all. We’re thrown into this absolutely amazing story, to then end up basically back in the crib learning how to roll over again. It was a little bit frustrating, and I was really hoping that it would turn back into a fast paced page turner, because I absolutely adored the beginning of the book.

The characters were okay, but I found Harper to be a bit thick at times. Gasping over Jacqueline doing certain things, when of course, due to their situation, she wouldn’t be doing these things at all, but just pretending. She seemed so gullible, which sort of contradicted this character that I met at the beginning of the book. Jacqueline was an okay character, as was…Adam? I’ve suddenly had a mental blank and can’t remember his name. The most interesting character was Rubaveer, I thought she was great, and Arl and Vulgun (I think that’s his name?) the two scientist Ancients were great too. But to be honest, none of the characters are really sticking into my head, there could have been an interesting connection between Harper and Daryl Pope, but it was sort of hinted at then left to fizzle out and die. So I’m not sure why the interaction between them was even there.

I feel like this book needed another couple of rounds of heavy editing, in order to fix the pacing of the story and to keep it linear. I don’t feel that this book needed to be 699 pages long, a lot of things could have been condensed, written in order to BE condensed, or cut out completely. I know that having that much information included did give us a better understanding of the hierarchy of the Ancients and the hybrids, but I still felt like it was totally unnecessary. We didn’t need to have every single step of the story laid out before us like it was – a lot could have been cut down.

All in all, I AM interested in seeing what happens in the follow up book to this (of which I’m assuming there will be at least one) but I’m just hoping that the editing does it’s job and that the pacing is a lot better.

View all my reviews

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