Disclaimer: The author and I share a publisher and I consider her a friend. I received an ebook version of this novella in exchange for an honest review.
Despite this being the second in a shared-world series by many authors, this story works well as a stand-alone tale. It included just enough science-fiction world-building to give me the information I needed for the story without feeling bogged down. In fact, I would happily read more set in this world because the details I was given were so intriguing.
Despite the main character being an alien, her personality and motivations were completely accessible to this human reader. Though she wasn’t necessarily a very likable character, her plight was sympathetic and the care she shows for her partner did much to humanize her. In contrast, the human character who should be very sympathetic to us becomes almost as much of a villain as the darkog aliens who sow so much destruction on their world and ours.
So here’s where the “honest” part of the review becomes important: I’m not sure that I would have finished this book if it was something I’d just randomly picked up. There is a significant amount of visceral horror in this science-fiction monster book, and McHugh does not spare details. However, the details are what makes the writing amazing, and I knocked off a star for my confusion over some of the order of events rather than my personal aversion to horror.
Currently reading: What Could Possibly Go Wrong? (Chronicles of St. Mary’s #6) by Jodi Taylor
Currently writing: 83,966/90k words