Even though I am a tabletop game contributor to Geek Girl Authority, I do know how to read, and sometimes I even read books! I discovered Eliza Sinclair through her Instagram posts featuring original role-playing game maps and story primers. She is really good at both and you can see that stuff here. After enjoying that content I decided to check out one of her novels, Cornucopia (Seeds of Hope Book 1).
Cornucopia is billed as a sci-fi novel with a hint of romance and the prospect of hope for a post-apocalyptic world. It clocks in at 214 pages. Our protagonist is Samantha Gao, an operative in the Metro militia whose mentor has disappeared and left her a message of warning that something weird and dangerous is amiss, possibly even somewhere inside Metro Command. The plot has Sam heading out as security for an inspection of Greenerhouse, a subsidiary of the big tech company NovaTech, located on the Cornucopia colony. What follows is for you to discover, but it is interesting, well written, and makes me want to read (and see) what is in store for this series. Now to the review.
I went into this book thinking that it would be interesting, but lacking in the polish of a full-time writer’s efforts. My expectations were exceeded within the first 25 pages. The setting was established with just enough description to immerse me in this universe. There were enough familiar aspects to make it relatable, but also enough futuristic embellishments to let me know that some of our current fiction is a reality in Cornucopia’s time. Sinclair’s writing style throws in the right amount of adjectives to paint vivid pictures without sacrificing plot flow. Sometimes, it feels like writers detrimentally overblow the story setting without allowing it to be revealed naturally around the plot. Here, everything fits nicely around a tight and coherent story.
The next thing I love is the character development. There are only a handful of characters in the book, but through a few glimpses into their thoughts encased around their actual words and actions, I felt like I knew enough about each person. It was as though Sinclair genuinely cared enough to learn about them before introducing them to me. They seemed quite real, despite the fictional setting. Also, due to the solid story development, I found myself rooting for the good guys, though often wondering if I was misplacing my trust in them. Of course, I would never spoil anything for you so you’ll have to figure it out yourself.
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