I don’t typically read science fiction and really have no idea what sci-fi fans look for in a book. In fact, if I hadn’t received a free digital edition courtesy Penguin Random House First to Read in exchange for an honest review then I would have skipped Saturn Run altogether.
However, that would have been a mistake on my part because this is an excellent book.
It appealed to me because it reads like a first-rate thriller with international intrigue. It begins with an accidental discovery—a starship is approaching Saturn and decelerating. That sets in motion a frantic race between the U.S. and China to reach Saturn and discover alien technology.
I think the biggest plus is the characters and dialogue. There is a humorous Ocean’s Eleven feel during the “recruitment” phase as the U.S. is putting together its eclectic Saturn team—and then Sandford develops the characters in meaningful ways and uses their dialogue to move the plot forward. It’s simply masterful.
For a story that transpires over a two-year period, the pacing could have been a real problem—but again, Sandford is such a good writer. It’s fast and suspenseful, and builds to a satisfying conclusion.
I highly recommend this to thriller fans: 5/5 stars.
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