Review: OTHELLA

Othella

About OTHELLA

Welcome to Arcadian Heights, where the world’s brightest minds go in…and don’t come out. ___

Georgette

Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Georgette McClain can’t resist a juicy tip. So when a rumored crazy ex-CEO gifts her evidence of a vast conspiracy involving the world’s premier scientific community, Arcadian Heights, she sets her sights on the story of a lifetime. And all she has to do to grab it by the reins is sneak into the most secure facility in the world—and expose it for the slaughter house it is.

Marco

Tech company CEO Marco Salt has it all. Fame. Fortune. Family. But not long after Marco’s beloved genius daughter is invited to join Arcadian Heights, a rogue agent reveals to him the horrifying truth about the revered scientific community. Forced to flee for his life, Marco finds himself on the run with a deadly secret in his grasp and a single goal in mind: destroy Arcadian Heights.

Quentin

Quentin Belmont has been the Arcadian Heights spokesman for the better part of two decades, and his singular motivation is to keep the community safe at all costs. So when an internal incursion leaks vital information to an outside party, Quentin preps a “cleanup” without a second thought. But what at first appears to be a simple task turns out to be anything but, and Quentin comes face to face with the unthinkable—a threat that could annihilate the community.


About Therin Knite

Therin Knite: n. speculative fiction writer, college student, and master of snark.

Or at least that’s what I’d like to believe.

If you’re reading this, then I’m assuming you’re wondering who the hell Therin Knite is, and the answer is nobody. Yet. I like to think I’m an up-and-coming author or sorts, but you know how those things tend to work out. In case you’re still interested, however, let’s put me through my paces.

I’m a Senior in college, majoring in Finance and English (which makes me about 22). I write every length of literary work known to man, from flash fiction to epic-length novels, but my genres are a bit more limited. My short stories and flash pieces tend to be any genre I’m in the mood for that day, while anything longer is pretty much limited to some variant of sci-fi or fantasy. Mostly sci-fi, though.


My Thoughts

The end of the world is drawing near. Set toward the end of the twenty-first century, climate change is wreaking havoc, riots are common place, and nations are collapsing. Behind the walls of Arcadia Heights, scientists are working to save what's left of mankind and prepare the next society for their place in the world.

Or are they?

Funny thing about those scientists, as Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Georgette McClain discovers, is that they have a nasty habit of dying. And she's damned determined to figure out why.

Although I haven't found time to dig into Echoes, I have been following Therin Knite's blog for a while now and was looking forward to reading Othella. We'll be providing a little bit more information on her latest release soon, as this site will be playing host to one of her blog tour stops July 7, so be sure to check back for more goodies! As a tour host, though, Therin was gracious enough to provide me with an advanced reader's copy of Othella, and I happily devoured it.

The plot unfolds across three different first-person accounts, time-hopping among them from five years back and progressing toward the story's present, in the year 2085. The pacing is spot-on, and I found myself wrapped up in the story from page one, constantly yearning to get back to the story during those too-long periods I was forced to set the book down (thanks a lot day job....). More importantly, I was genuinely curious as to how the disparate threads would merge and just could not wait to dive back into the story. The material is fast-paced and action-packed, but the story develops with a deliberate thoughtfulness, and it's apparent that the author devoted a lot of attention toward carefully planning the execution of her story.  There's a lot happening between the covers, but Othella never feels bloated or overly stuffed. Stories with shifting viewpoints and time jumps, particularly in less experienced hands, risk becoming muddled or confusing. Thankfully, Knite has a deft touch and everything is evenly measured and developed with precision.

Therin does a beautiful job of shading in the world building and character development with her strong narrative chops, nicely constructing a bleak, dystopic future scenario in which mankind's days are numbered. Each of her leads have their own unique set of strengths, weaknesses, and emotionally festering open wounds, but Georgette was by far my favorite. I kept waiting for the story to turn back to this vain, bratty, sharp-tongued gonzo journalist, curious to see how those past events and conflicts between Marco Salt and Quentin "Q" Belmont would impact or unravel her undercover infiltration of Arcadia Heights. But, even in that arena, Knite manages to stack on some very important and surprising reversals and revelations.

As the first in a new series, Othella succeeds in its primary goals of establishing a realistic, too-close-for-comfort dystopian future, and setting the stage for future installments while still being a wholly satisfying read all on its own. The story will continue in Apollo, and regardless of when that book releases, it will be much too long of a wait. I want it now!

Buy OTHELLA at Amazon

For a limited time, to celebrate her new release, Othella is only $0.99.

It's a no-brainer purchase. Do it!

Michael Hicks

Michael Patrick Hicks is the author of the science fiction novels Convergence, an Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award 2013 Quarter-Finalist, and Emergence. His work has appeared in several anthologies, and he has written for the websites Graphic Novel Reporter and Audiobook Reviewer. In between compulsively buying books and adding titles that he does not have time for to his Netflix queue, he is hard at work on his next story.


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