Thistle (thistle_chaser) wrote,
Thistle
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Books 34-40 of 2015: Remnants series conclusion

Remnants series by K. A. Applegate

Scale: (Hated-Disliked-Okay-Liked-Loved)
Mother, May I?: Okay
No Place Like Home: Okay
Lost and Found: Okay
Dream Storm: Hated
Aftermath: Disliked
Survival: Okay
Begin Again: Hated

One of the covers, the best of the bunch:


I really should have stopped reading this series early on. The first book was outstanding, the next couple were pretty good, but it quickly went downhill from there and never recovered.

Talking about anything in the later books would spoil the earlier ones, so I'm going to put everything plot-ish behind a cut:

In the first book, the Earth is destroyed. Literally. An asteroid hits it, the planet is broken up into pieces. Humanity sends off a ship full of a dozen or so people in hibernation (very untested tech). 500 years later, those people wake up on what turns out to be an intelligent ship.

These last seven books of the fourteen book series are about the survivors returning to Earth. Why return to it? How in the world would they find anything at all there when the planet literally was smashed to pieces? Very good questions.

Through nothing more than author handwaving, the planet is actually still there! It's just no longer rotating, so one side is always bright, the other always dark, with a shadow zone in the middle where people can (and do) live. In the early books, the survivors saw the planet literally breaking into pieces, so this was a tad head-scratching. It's never explained.

Even ignoring the lack of logic in having survivors at all, they were badly written and the whole plot with the was just unenjoyable. Some of the survivors lived and farmed underground, while others acted as [we never learned!] above ground. For some reason, those who lived underground shared their food 50/50 with the ones who lived aboveground, even though they didn't have enough food to support themselves.

I have to call out Dream Storm as being an especially bad book. Somehow, on this ruined-not-ruined Earth, there were "psychic storms" -- weather storms that would attack you psychically, make you see things, basically make you live through a waking nightmare. How does that make any sense at all? This is the Earth, our Earth, hit by an asteroid and destroyed-not-destroyed, why in the world would these storms be created? Heck, since the planet isn't rotating, how is there a storm at all of any kind?

The ending (which was so so so unsatisfying and I hated it so much) was literally a deus ex machina: The intelligent ship was basically a god, came from the sky to land on the ruined Earth, and in minutes turned the planet back how it had been -- green, full of plant and animal life, more humans). The whole story felt so pointless when that happened. Plus, like the Harry Potter books, there was an afterwards where the survivors were all paired off and had kids. Blah. /end spoiler cut



The author said she was unhappy she had taken the story in this direction (unhappy with this last half of the series), and I 100% agree with her. It makes zero sense, and it ruined whatever joy I had left for the series.

My earlier complaints about the series continued on through these books: I question if they were edited at all (typos on Every Single Page). Each book was was short! At my usual reading pace, each one took about an hour and a half to read. Insane. It felt like each book was a chapter, not a stand-alone book.

I can strongly recommend the first book of the series, but I'd just as strongly suggest stopping after it.

Reading next: The Dungeoneers -- I fell in love with it from the very first sentence!
Tags: 2015 books, book review, book series: remnants, book: aftermath, book: begin again, book: dream storm, book: lost and found, book: mother may i?, book: no place like home, book: survival
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