ARC provided by the publisher—Harper Voyager—in exchange for an honest review.
Spaceside by Michael Mammay
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Series: Planetside (Book #2)
Genre: Science-fiction, Mystery
Pages: 336 pages
Published: 27th August, 2019 by Harper Voyager
I can’t emphasize this highly enough: if you enjoyed reading Planetside, you will most likely enjoy Spaceside too.
Spaceside is the second book in Michael Mammay’s Planetside series. Although the first book worked totally well as a standalone, I’m glad there’s a continuation because I was left wanting more after the ending of the first book. More than a year has passed, Colonel Butler is trying his best to live with the burden of the life-changing action he did at the end of Planetside. Even though Butler has been forced into retirement because of it, this doesn’t mean that he can take a break. In this installment, Butler’s task to investigate a hacking ended up escalating much bigger than he expected.
“A wise man once told me that hope is not a great planning tool.”
I can safely say that pretty much everything that was great about the first book remained intact here; intriguing mystery written with a thrilling feels that won’t allow me to catch a break persisted throughout the entirety of the plot. Same as its Planetside, Spaceside can be described as a mystery thriller in a military sci-fi setting. The one thing that’s clearly upgraded from the previous book was the more in-depth characterizations of the main character. Spaceside, understandably, felt more intimate. The author efficiently displayed Butler’s internal conflicts; seeing a man of action like him coping with the consequences of his actions and facing paranoia from his past gave a personal tone to the narration that made the characters more fleshed out.
“Taking charge and moving forward always beat sitting still and waiting for others to act.”
Reading Mammay’s prose was damn addictive. I recently binged read War for the Rose Throne by Peter McLean and I do believe that the reading experience offered within Mammay’s storytelling style is similar to that series; except that this in a sci-fi setting instead of fantasy. Don’t get me wrong here, the story, setting, and writing itself were vastly different from each other. However, the prose, pacing, and the main character of these two series combined to give a fast-paced narrative that doesn’t neglect characterizations.
“Your whole life you do big, important things. You speak and people listen. Then suddenly that’s over, and you’re wasting your life doing some bullshit job that doesn’t matter, where nobody cares what you do as long as you show up for the company functions.”
The minor issue I had with the book was that at times I did feel like the story structure in Spaceside progressed a bit too similar to its predecessor. This, of course, is just a minor issue and overall doesn’t change the fact that I was still super engrossed by it.
“People always wanted to believe in heroes, though the truth of the stories rarely lived up to the myth.”
Spaceside is a worthy sequel to Planetside and Mammay once again successfully delivered another highly entertaining page-turner. The cleverly mixed mystery and military sci-fi element made this relatively small book packed with a strong impact, and I highly recommend it to readers who are looking for a fast-paced mystery/sci-fi read.
Official release date: 27th August, 2019
The quotes in this review were taken from an ARC and are subject to change upon publication.