The Pearl Wars by Nick James

Goodreads: The Pearl Wars
Series: Skyship Academy #1

Summary: The population left on a devastated Earth have retreated to the Chosen cities, where they can control the temperature and live in comfort.  The cities, however, require massive amounts of energy to function and, with natural resources depleted, the people must rely on the objects they call Pearls for power.  The Pearls fall from the sky and must be collected in order for the Earth to use them.  A faction, however, has separated from Earth in protest of the increasingly dictatorial nature of politics and the increasing number of secrets kept from the people.  They live in Skyships above the Earth and also require Pearls in order to live.  Skyship agent Jesse Fisher’s job is to collect Pearls before the agents on Earth can, but when he discovers a hidden ability to control the Pearls, he will find himself running both from those on Earth and from the very people he used to trust.

Review: Nick James’s debut novel takes the reader on an exciting adventure through a fascinating world full of intrigue and danger.  From the high-tech Skyships and Chosen cities to the burned-out Fringe towns, James realizes a world of political and emotional complexity sure to draw in even skeptical readers.  A generous amount of action including explosions, chase scenes, and undercover operations closes the trap, keeping the audience on the edges of their seats and completely absorbed in Jame’s fast-paced narrative.  If some feared The Pearl Wars would prove a typical “boy book,” however, full of thrills but lacking in depth, a surprise ending destroys that notion.  A shocking revelation ensures that the characters realize that every choice they make in the future will have vast moral implications, not only for themselves, but for the world.

Published: 2011

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