Title: 27 Hours (The Nightside Saga #1)
Author: Tristina Wright
Genres: Young Adult, LGBTIQAP, Sci-fi
Release Day: October 3rd 2017
ARC was kindly provided from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Rumor Mora fears two things: hellhounds too strong for him to kill, and failure. Jude Welton has two dreams: for humans to stop killing monsters, and for his strange abilities to vanish. But in no reality should a boy raised to love monsters fall for a boy raised to kill them.

Nyx Llorca keeps two secrets: the moon speaks to her, and she’s in love with Dahlia, her best friend. Braeden Tennant wants two things: to get out from his mother’s shadow, and to unlearn Epsilon’s darkest secret. They’ll both have to commit treason to find the truth.

During one twenty-seven-hour night, if they can’t stop the war between the colonies and the monsters from becoming a war of extinction, the things they wish for will never come true, and the things they fear will be all that’s left.

4 stars! 

We won. You can take five minutes.

Oh this review is going to be a looong one, people. 27 Hours is one of those books I kept seeing on NetGalley and GR and just scrolled past it for whatever reason until I finally read the blurb and nearly punched myself because I ALMOST MISSED THIS WTF IS WRONG WITH ME. This book is equal parts epic and flawed though. Okay so first of all, kudos and all the YASES  to the author for writing a book that is so inclusive and just a huge rainbow in space, oh my book feels how much I liked these characters.

  • Rumor is a bisexual, multiracial boy with a Nigerian/Portuguese dad and an Indian mom.
  • Dahlia is a afrolatinx bisexual trans girl.
  • Jude is a gay boy with a gay brother.
  • Nyx is a Deaf pansexual Cuban. YAS WE HAVE SIGN LANGUAGE! Even though I wasn’t thrilled that it was American Sign Language – there are other sign languages you know – it was a nice surprise.
  • Braeden is an asexual boy with lesbian moms.

That’s just the main characters. 27 Hours takes place in a Moon, a couple of hundred years from now people from all over the world arrive, unaware of the indigenous species called chimera, they “re-build” the world but in doing so they cause a major flood which in turn causes a lot of the chimera to die and war between the two species begins. I should point out that this would have been better if there was a chapter from the chimera’s POV, we know what colonization is like, we know what the colonizers think and even though the book tried to show “the other side”, it wasn’t the same.

“Humans are a parasite, and you’re destroying this land with your mining and your colonization. You came and took with no regard to the life already existing here and, according to your histories, that’s fairly standard for your species, isn’t it?”

The story starts with an attack to HUB2, Rumor is the only survivor and after the attack which destroys his home and kills his dad – not a spoiler this literally happens two pages in, he escapes to the nearest colony to warn them and is being taken care of. The attack is the first of many to follow and our characters team up to try to stop the next one. I don’t want to spoil much but from the moment I opened the book till the last page I never once took my eyes off the pages. It helped that I was in a moving car, I guess.

There’s so many things happening in this one, the story never allows you to slow down and take a break from the action. Things just keep on happening with little time in between for our characters to interact and when they do, it’s magic. I love how they interacted with each other, I couldn’t get enough of their funny dialogue and snark, they really became a huge group of friends in the end, I love the friendships here! And there’s a lot of romance going on that was just so epic and adorable. But most of all it was done right, with characters asking for consent. The story takes the readers on a thrilling ride of explosions, diplomacy, love and new friendships.

This book has become a huge topic of discussion for its representation, and I’ve been re-writing my review, going over my highlighted parts and notes over and over again. A lot of Goodreads reviews are highlighting the problematic parts of this book better than I ever could, about colonization and race rep, asexual rep and gender rep. The closer we get to the release the more readers are highlighting the issues even though while reading it I didn’t pick on all of the issues so check them out.

Two of the biggest issues I had with the story were:

  • the language: the language the characters are using is very 2017. It’s really hard to believe that 300 years from now people from all over the world, living in a colonized Moon will use words like y’all and speak perfect English but also just include a couple of words from other languages like abuela. Was English supposed to be the default language? I don’t think so. Plus it’s obvious that this is written with 2017 issues in mind. Race, consent and sexuality are huge in this book and while it’s awesome, this is set in the future and yet that wasn’t reflected in the story. Other than them being on a Moon, nothing was futuristic. There wasn’t a nice balance between setting and characters.
  • And the fact that it’s a story about a colonized Moon – which is sort of another character that interacted with one of out main characters – and the main characters are fighting with the gargoyle chimera that occupied the planet. PEOPLE. COLONIZED. A. MOON. AND. ARE. FIGHTING. WITH. THE. INDIGENOUS. PEOPLE.

I mean, WHAT THE FUCK IS THAT ABOUT? Some of the reactions and the hatred towards the chimera come from the main character, Rumor, under the excuse that they killed his dad but um… you colonized their planet and killed a lot of them, so again, WTF. A lot of readers have mentioned this huge part of the book – see above – and I just feel like these characters deserved a better setting. That fact combined with how early in the book the action starts, might make it hard for some readers to connect with the characters but I honestly had no problem with that.

If I have to review the book based on the plot then it’s a disaster, if I have to review it based on the characters, then it’s amazing. I loved the characters and they deserve to be praised. You can tell I’m utterly conflicted by this book, at 1.2k words I’m still not done talking about it.

The world building is very hard to put into words and I have big gaps which need more info since it was hardly analyzed, for a sci-fi book there wasn’t a lot of sci-fi going on here and I’m looking forward to more of that on the second one since I have tons of questions and I need some damn answers. Overall, the characters are what makes this book so amazing to read, they each have their own unique personalities that shine in the middle of a very under-developed, flawed and confusing sci-fi story.

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