Saturday, September 9, 2023

The Sky Vault

The Sky Vault by Benjamin Percy
9/12/23; 320 pages
William Morrow
Comet Cycle #3

The Sky Vault by Benjamin Percy is a very highly recommended science fiction thriller and the third novel in the Comet Cycle. I loved this one so much I've purchased the first two novels in the series, The Ninth Metal and The Unfamiliar Garden (which I had a review copy of in December 2021). You can read The Sky Vault as a stand-alone novel, but science fiction aficionados will likely want the series.

The Sky Vault follows an investigation of a mysterious weather phenomena in Fairbanks, Alaska, and a government secret buried since WWII. The meteorite debris field of the Comet named Cain left a new metal, "omnimetal," which interferes with physics and relationship between time and space.

Chuck Bridges, a local DJ, has been trying to warn people and experts that there is a new kind of cloud over Fairbanks and has been summarily dismissed as a lunatic. He sees things in the clouds and sometimes hears soft voices. Something happens to him that send his son Theo and his friends searching for answers. Rolf Wagner, the local sheriff, finds himself investigating some odd, peculiar things. Joanna Straub is a contractor recently hired to construct a new facility on an old government site used in WWII. Sophie Chen, an agent with the shadowy group that calls themselves the Collectors, is in Fairbanks looking for something and she will do whatever she deems necessary to get what she seeks.

I was engrossed in this novel from start to finish. The writing is exceptional. The narrative is irresistible and completely engrossing. Percy expertly develops all the plot threads and brings them all together to create the larger story. The WWII chapters which are excerpts from a log book, are interesting but the full significance of them isn't revealed until later. Readers will know they need to pay attention to them as their importance becomes increasingly ominous.

The characters in The Sky Vault are varied, sympathetic, and all fully realized. I especially connected with the dialogue and thoughts of the characters and there were many times I said, "yes!" or laughed and felt as if I knew and understood these people. The Sky Vault is on my list of the best books of 2023.

Disclosure: My review copy was courtesy of William Morrow via Edelweiss.

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