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August 27, 2023

The Blue, Beautiful World by Karen Lord ~ a Review

by MK French

As the Earth's climate changes, aliens observe and deem them ready for contact. Leading the charge for first contact are dreamers and changemakers. Peter Hendrix invented the most advanced VR tech. Charyssa is a celebrity with a passion for humanitarian work. Kanoa is a member of a global council hoping to reimagine the relationship between humans and aliens. The group's secret weapon is pop superstar Owen, who uses more than charisma to connect with fans and might help humanity connect with aliens. This gift means others can't control him, and he also feels compelled to use it. What will happen to the rest of humanity?

Amazon affiliate links are used on this site. A free book was provided for an honest review.

book cover of science fiction novel The Blue, Beautiful World by Karen Lord
August 2023; Del Rey; 978-0593598436
audio, ebook, print (256 pages); science fiction

We open with Owen's tour and his entourage, who interact with Peter and Charyssa due to the work with VR and technology. Peter is aware of Owen's secret, which we learn before some other people he's close to. The First Contact scenario is being studied by the characters, especially the youth. Once we got to their part of the story, about a third of the way through the book, I really lost interest. I wasn't attached to any of the students or their troubles as they acclimated to being on a team and learning about "theoretical" galactic problems. I think part of that is because it came across as very info-dumpy, and I really didn't enjoy that aspect of the book. 

This novel is an exploration of technology and humanity, and how people could possibly enter a global stage of development to enter into a galactic alliance. It's always a fascinating concept, which drew me to this novel. For that reason, I wish I enjoyed it more than I did.

Born and raised in New York City, M.K. French started writing stories when very young, dreaming of different worlds and places to visit. She always had an interest in folklore, fairy tales, and the macabre, which has definitely influenced her work. She currently lives in the Midwest with her husband, three young children, and a golden retriever.

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