This review is spoiler-free!
Sleeping Giants by Sylvain Neuvel
Series: Themis Files #1
Genres: Science Fiction, Fantasy
Release Date: April 26th 2016 by Del Rey
Format: Hardcover, 320 pages
Find it here: Goodreads || Book Depository
A girl named Rose is riding her new bike near home in Deadwood, South Dakota, when she falls through the earth. She wakes up at the bottom of a square-shaped hole, its walls glowing with intricate carvings. But the firemen who come to save her peer down upon something even stranger: a little girl in the palm of a giant metal hand.
Seventeen years later, the mystery of the bizarre artifact remains unsolved – the object’s origins, architects, and purpose unknown.
But some can never stop searching for answers.
Rose Franklin is now a highly trained physicist leading a top-secret team to crack the hand’s code. And along with her colleagues, she is being interviewed by a nameless interrogator whose power and purview are as enigmatic as the relic they seek. What’s clear is that Rose and her compatriots are on the edge of unravelling history’s most perplexing discovery-and finally figuring out what it portends for humanity. But once the pieces of the puzzle are in place, will the result be an instrument of lasting peace or a weapon of mass destruction?
First off: I cannot pronounce this poor author’s name to save my life. I can pronounce his first name and last name separately just fine, but when I say them together, I fumble every time. I don’t know why.
I have tried. I can’t do it.
I’m so sorry.
His writing, though? So good. Not that that has anything at all to do with his name and how I can’t say it, but it’s so good. Like oh my god I love this book so much that I included it in my 2019 recommendations and it’s also a favorite book on my shelves (digitally, on Goodreads, because I’m hunting for a hardcover version currently for my physical shelves). I was hooked on this book, on this whole series, and I absolutely loved the journey it took me on.
I’ve possibly said this before, but the blurb stating that this is like The Martian by Andy Weir is wrong. I would know. Because The Martian is my favorite book, period. This has to do with space, but it’s so much more sci-fi than The Martian, and, honestly, might even be cooler because of that.
Think The Iron Giant meets Pacific Rim meets Voltron instead. That’s what I was thinking the entire time I read the book, because that’s about as best as I can put what the story is about. Giant robot aliens with people trying to pilot them, told in dossier files that make the story fly by. It’s literally everything I love to read about, format included. It can get a little, teensy bit dry at times due to the personality of one very major character (I won’t say who, but if you’ve read the series, I have a feeling you could name them easily), but those dry moments had a habit of being suddenly overshadowed by twists that I may have seen coming, but were still shocked by when they happened due to thee magnitude of the incident that coincided with said plot twist.
It’s just such a good sci-fi book, pretty unlike anything I’ve read so far despite the comparison to Iron Giant, Pacific Rim, and Voltron. I really love this book, and if you happen to like any of the three fandoms listed, or maybe all three at once, and you enjoy unconventional formatting, then I highly suggest giving this series a go. It did my nerdy little science heart in, and I’m actually totally ready for a reread.
Thanks for reading!