What's it about?
Zenn Scarlett is a resourceful, determined 17-year-old girl working hard to make it through her novice year of exovet training. That means she's learning to care for alien creatures that are mostly large, generally dangerous and profoundly fascinating. Zenn’s all-important end-of-term tests at the Ciscan Cloister Exovet Clinic on Mars are coming up, and, she's feeling confident of acing the exams. But when a series of inexplicable animal escapes and other disturbing events hit the school, Zenn finds herself being blamed for the problems. As if this isn't enough to deal with, her absent father has abruptly stopped communicating with her; Liam Tucker, a local towner boy, is acting unusually, annoyingly friendly; and, strangest of all: Zenn is worried she's started sharing the thoughts of the creatures around her. Which is impossible, of course. Nonetheless, she can't deny what she's feeling.Now, with the help of Liam and Hamish, an eight-foot sentient insectoid also training at the clinic, Zenn must learn what's happened to her father, solve the mystery of who, if anyone, is sabotaging the cloister, and determine if she's actually sensing the consciousness of her alien patients... or just losing her mind. All without failing her novice year....
Personally this one was a slow starter for me, while it was interesting there just wasn't enough action and excitement for me. I found a lot of the start to have too much information in parts and it kind of made the book drag for me because I wanted to get to the plot and mystery of it. I guess you could call it an origin book, where the setting is laid out and we meet the characters, then all the action comes in book two when the introductions are over, at least I hope that's how it is as I am planning to read book two, there was some good stuff in the second half of this book that I enjoyed with a brilliant ending.
So really, this book was up and down for me, I didn't love it to start but I enjoyed it by the end and plan to read more, so that's definitely positive and I certainly wouldn't turn other people from it.
Zenn wasn't my favourite character, to be honest she kind of annoyed me at times with her 'rule' not to get close to people when I didn't feel like there was enough in her past to cause a foundation for this rule, she hasn't been left and hurt numerous times to be so jaded at such a young age, at least that's my personal opinion, she hasn't had it easy either but I think people go through a lot more before swearing off making any kind of friendship ever.
Liam was a good character, I guessed some stuff about him pretty early on but he was a good guy and I liked him and I really enjoyed Hamish, its always fun to 'see' an alien learning about human objects, sayings and mannerisms, things we don't think twice about can seem so strange to an outsider and that's always fun to think of.
So, I am looking forward to book two, especially after that cliffhanger and only half a mystery solved!
My thoughts on the cover
I love this cover, I'm such a Space geek so I love that the majority of the image is of Space with Zenn loking out to the sky, and the colours are awesome.
No favourite quotes as I read an ARC that cannot be quoted from.