Book review ~ Stolen Earth by J.T.Nicholas

Stolen Earth
Author : J.T.Nicholas
Genre : Sci-fi
Publisher : Titan Books
Release date : 21st September 2021

Environmental disasters and uncontrolled AI armies have caused the human population of Earth to flee. They lie scattered across innumerable space stations and colonies, overcrowded and suffering. The Earth is cut off by the Interdiction Zone: a network of satellites to prevent anything getting into or out of the planet. The incredible cost of maintaining it has crippled humanity, who struggle under the totalitarian yoke of the Sol Commonwealth government, whose rich grow richer while the poor are on the brink of starvation.

Many have been driven to the edge of society, yearning for freedom and taking any work offered, criminal and otherwise, in order to survive. The crew of the Arcus are just such people.

A client has come to the table claiming to have the codes necessary to penetrate the Interdiction Zone. Once through, a world of priceless artifacts awaits, provided anyone crazy enough to make the run can be found. They’ve all heard the rumors – ships that have set down, pilfered the ruins of a museum or private collection, and escaped with enough priceless works to retire. Arcus Captain Lynch knows better – he’s been on-world before, a brief and harrowing experience that he’s in no hurry to relive. But fuel is running low and cred accounts even lower, and the Arcus’ survival might depend on taking the job.

Yet on arrival on Earth, the crew discovers that what remains on their world is not as they have been told, and the secrets they find are big enough to bring the entire Sol Commonwealth tumbling down… 

Stolen Earth was a pretty good sci-fi! I hadn’t read one in a while, and this one managed to grab my attention enough that I didn’t have to push through to finish it.

We discover a world where Earth has been put on a lockdown after a world war involving AIs, which are still active on Earth after killing everyone who did not manage to escape Earth before their attacks.
A team of thieves, including Captain Lynch, a former member of the government army, are comissioned to go on Earth, and cross the Interdiction Zone to recover an artifact from the planet.
On arrival, the crew discovers that not all is as the government would want everyone to believe, and their quest for an artifact soon turns into much more.

One thing I really liked about this book is the crew. While I usually enjoy space crews with the chosen family trope, here, we kind of have the opposite. It’s just a bunch of random people who ended up being outlaws and now need to make money. They’re not here to be friends, and it can be felt in the way they interact. I thought it was pretty interesting, and probably more accurate in that aspect than some other books.

It also felt realistic in the science and techy stuff. The whole book revolves around a plot featuring AIs, so I enjoyed reading about them, how they came to be built, the way they work, the way the Interdiction Zone works, etc. The writing explains many things that are often overlooked in stories, and I appreciated that a lot, even if sometimes I struggled understanding everything. It’s a huge plus for people who are science buffs.

The plot not too original, but the way to tell it was very well done. If you enjoy good sci-fi books that are neither too cliché, neither too difficult to read, I hope you would be willing to give Stolen Earth a shot!

That’s it for today!
Thanks for reading me,
See you soon,
Jade ❤

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