Aestus, Book 1: The City
“…I haven’t been this engrossed in a book in a long time!….This novel has so so many surprises and is a many-layered exploration of humanity and justice (like all good sci-fi novels are!). Highly highly recommend. Plus it’s so entertaining! I bought book II as soon as it was out and am only pulling my head from its pages to write this review before I get in too deep! Read this book! It says so much about our world, who we are, the challenges we face….” – I. M.
“It’s hard to write a review of this book because I’m afraid that my description won’t do it justice. This is a phenomenal read….I can’t remember the last time I read a book this fast nor one that stayed with me for so long.” – Amanda W.
“….sets a new standard for sci-fi and dystopian fiction.” – W. A.
“Wow. I devoured this. Perfect blend of plot twists behind an impeccable balancing act of action, world-building, introspection, character development and connection. Including touches of comedic relief to ease us out of a brilliant collection of edge-of-your-seat thrilling (sometimes horrific) scenes. The writing is masterfully concise and flows with ease, I couldn’t put it down.” – R. Glaessner
“….There are a lot of ‘living in a hole in the ground after X disaster’ novels, but this one manages to be new. Aestus is visceral and disturbing…you are compelled to feel the fear and the toil. It was not a book I devoured in a couple of sittings, but some of the scenes and images stuck with me for a long time afterwards….” – J. C. Duncan
“…a grand, sprawling epic that marries expert dystopian world-building with strong character development and dialog…..This novel exceeded all of my expectations. It pleasantly surprised me to discover Ms. Attwell is a pioneer in the brand new sub-genre, that of ‘climate fiction.’….This is an impressive debut, and…the denouement blew me away….” – J. S.
“This book really has opened my eyes to a whole world of literature I had been purposely ignoring….Turns out I actually very much enjoy sci-fi – I’ve removed the ‘do not send me sci-fi’ from my review policy, and long books aren’t as terrifying as they seem….This is one of the best books I’ve ever read….This book has truly convinced me to explore more of the world of sci-fi, a genre I previously tried to avoid because I thought it was just men in space rockets (lol). I really loved how it was a real-world setting and it really allowed me to think about the way the world we be if we don’t try change things now, potentially whilst we still have time. Books don’t make me cry and never have done, but there were times throughout this book where I was getting quite close to shedding a tear. I think I experienced every emotion possible because of the way the storyline lured you in with a false sense of security, only for there to be a huge plot twist, which more often than not had me reading with my mouth wide open. All in all, I would highly recommend this book to fans of sci-fi as well as those who are like me and haven’t really delved into the genre much. It’s an absolutely fantastic 5 star read, and the other reviews I’ve seen have agreed with me on that! S.Z. Attwell is an extremely talented author – this is her debut novel(!!!)….” – The Very Bookish
“Aestus is one of the best dystopian sci-fi novels I’ve read….beautifully vivid, with descriptions so specific and detailed that I felt like I was there alongside the characters, watching events unfold as if through my own eyes….It’s difficult to speak in much detail about Aestus without ruining one of the dozens of mysteries posited by the novel, but every page within the book’s covers is worth reading. Aestus has been the best fiction book I’ve read this year, and I’d strongly recommend it to anyone, even those not fans of the genre.” – R Sha
“This book is nearly 700 pages. I read it in two days and immediately bought the second one. The world building, the characters, the plot, the SUSPENSE… The author does a brilliant job of introducing a whole new world construct without ever falling into the trap of drawn-out description….As for the characters, it’s been a long time since I’ve cared this much about their outcomes! Even when you can’t tell where their loyalties lie, they are fascinating. And despite its length, this book never lags: I kept wondering how things could possibly ratchet up more. But they always did. Cannot recommend this book enough!” – Aildreda
“….This was amazing. I have never had the steam to get through a book this long, but…it definitely did not move slow. There are so many layers to it….Again, I have never finished a book this long, let alone this quickly. I think it only took me a week or so to read. And then, instead of losing momentum near the end I instead picked up and was so into the story that I read book 2 in the span of two days!….Also…I am very picky about plotlines and twists, and I have to say I felt refreshed by the amount of well executed twists and turns this book took….” – Schara Reeves
“A dystopian sci-fi with depth and heart…I was super impressed.” – Beth S., advance reader
“I kind of hate how good this book is. IT’S SO GOOD.” “The writing was exquisite….I can’t wait to read it again.” – Amanda A., advance reader
“…- Female lead that exists comfortably outside of the usual stereotypes….She acts like a very real person facing these challenges and that makes her so very easy to root for….As someone who enjoys trying to get in front of a twist I was often times surprised in the best of ways….[Aestus] just feels so fresh compared to other books in dystopian worlds….” -A. Behlum
Aestus, Book 2: The Colony
“Aestus II is one of those excellent works of literature that challenges its readers and upends their expectations, but somehow still manages to maintain the most loved elements of the first book: the complex characters, the detailed world, and the inspirational story that manages to speak to our time (without shouting out too many simple answers as some works seeking to have a ‘message’ are liable to do). The book is remarkable for many things, but I particularly appreciated the delicate balance Attwell struck in terms of the pace of the story, not too fast that we don’t get to live with the depth and tensions of the tale, but always pulling you along….No spoilers, but it’s a doozy!! I can only hope this isn’t the last we’ll see of this world and these much beloved characters!” – I. M.
“A captivating and intense story paired with lovable characters….I couldn’t put this down and I think I enjoyed it even more than the first book in the series. Attwell has an incredible talent for not only developing characters, but developing the relationships between characters. There are a lot of complex and varied relationships in this book, and I was here for it the whole way through.” – Beth S.
“….exciting, emotional, suspenseful, philosophical, riveting ride!” – Adriana A.
“….I had the same experience reading this book as I had Book 1: I had a hard time putting it down and couldn’t wait to return to it….The author….has an uncanny talent for maintaining suspense and tension throughout an entire story almost without letup….All in all, it’s a terrifically entertaining book to read.” – C. Dorman
“S.Z. Attwell has done it again! This is an incredibly strong sequel, which may be even better than the extraordinary first book! ‘The Colony’ builds upon the world introduced in Book 1, adding complexity and nuance to every page. It’s hard not to be invested in every character that is introduced….If you haven’t already, read this book, and get ready for the next one in the series! I know I can’t wait for Book 3!” – Amanda W.
Reviews used with permission.