Nyxia is the most racially diverse book I’ve ever read and it does it so well. The diversity creates an understanding of different cultures while also showing that we’re all the same no matter color or culture. The story follows Emmett, an African-American teenager from Detroit. He wants to free himself and his family from the harsh reality of poverty. Along with nine other kids his age, he is selected by The Babel Corporation to board a lightship bound for an earth-like planet called Eden with the hope of returning home with the economical means to support his family. But in the search for a better life does freedom actually exist and who controls it?
Comes out September 12th.
The concept of teens partaking in a high stakes competition is nothing new in YA. The reason this one stands out is because of how it’s executed. It features a diverse and complex cast of characters, who all want the same thing. The main character, Emmett, is constantly battling moral dilemmas. He is torn between forming relationships with the other kids on board and winning. It’s hard to decide what’s more important and where to draw the line. The competition part is pretty clever. Babel gives the competitors the incentive of more money than they’ve ever dreamed of and priority health care for their families. It keeps them focused on rivalry, distracting them from questioning the motives that lie behind.
There are layers upon layers yet to be peeled away in order to understand the mysteries that lurk in every corner of this fantastic book. Every character is their own unique person with backgrounds that have somehow brought them here. But why were they chosen? What is Babel up to? And what exactly is that mysterious substance, Nyxia?
It’s a real page turner, it takes you through twists and turns you won’t see coming until your pupils dilate and you’re screaming internally. Nyxia is the best beginning to a series I’ve ever read, it leaves you with all kinds of questions and a desperate need for more. I’m extremely impressed that this is the author’s debut novel. It’s a complex story about wanting a better life and trying to escape the pain that life brings. It’s about the illusion and perception of freedom. It explores the mystery of the unknown and untested. This book deals with what is right or wrong and it does it in such a beautifully captivating way. It doesn’t answer the questions, it examines them and makes you think and makes you aware of the them.
I desperately need the rest of the series. But until then I’ll have to be patient and try not to overflow with questions of what’s next. I cannot recommend this enough. Nyxia will keep you captivated until the very end. Buckle up, it’s going to be a wild ride. Buy it. Read it. Love it. And gush about it with me.
*I received an arc via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*