I've gotten to where I start out all of these reviews by saying something along the lines of how this story can't possibly get any bigger, but then the next book comes out and G.S. Jennsen blows my mind once more.
Well, it happened again. Big surprise there.
As an author myself, I can't help but marvel at the sheer amount of planning that must have gone (and is still going!) into this series. And I'm not just talking about the character development, because I imagine managing this cast of characters and having an arc on some scale for each of them is a challenge in itself. But here we are in book 8, where events are being affected by things that happened way back in Starshine and Vertigo. Some things have been slow-cooking more than others and have maybe been developing over the course of two or three books, but you look back on it all and can't help but think "Everything has been leading up to this."
There's a lot of science in this book, and honestly most of it goes way over my head -- my brain tends to skip the discussion and just jump to the conclusion. It seems like the characters are constantly discovering new ways to enhance their abilities, and one of the discoveries they make in this story should have some interesting implications in their future struggles against the Anaden Directorate and its fleets. Yet another discovery / experiment / secret is sure to have a huge impact as well, though on a much more personal level -- this is one of those plot points that's been slow-brewing over the course of a few books and has now been...given life thanks to a combination of story elements. I never saw it coming, but looking back on it now, things have obviously been flowing this direction for quite a while.
As always, the character relationships continue to develop and fluctuate, bringing unexpected characters together to accomplish a task, or, in some cases, pitting them against each other. But what stood out to me in this book wasn't Alex and Caleb, or Kennedy or Miriam or Morgan or any of the other characters we've known for the majority of the series. They all play huge roles of course (or, if not huge, at least meaningful) but what kept my attention were the newer Amaranthean characters. Relativity obviously introduced us to Eren asi-Idoni, and while we did meet others, he sort of remained in the spotlight (which is just fine with me, because I love him). In Rubicon, some of those other characters -- anarchs and Directorate alike -- got a lot more screen time, so to speak, and I'm glad because after 6 - 7 books featuring mostly the same characters, this helps keep the story fresh. Cosime is entertaining. Nyx keeps me on the edge of my seat. Even Nisi got my attention this time around, perhaps more than any of the other minor characters thanks to an epic revelation toward the end of the book (which, again, will have some interesting implications in the third and final installment). Still, Eren shined the most out of anyone and found himself in the spotlight once more (literally, in one particular scene that might be my new favorite out of the entire series). He saw an incredible amount of growth in this story alone.
The story ended with three blows (mostly to the reader, partially to the characters depending on whose perspective you're looking at). Boom. Epic scene involving Eren acting on all of that personal growth. Boom. Interpersonal revelation #1. Boom. Interpersonal revelation #2. I can't wait to find out what sort of impact this all has on events in Requiem, the ninth and final (as far as we know, anyway) installment in this series.
About G.S. Jennsen
G.S. Jennsen lives in Colorado with her husband and two dogs. Rubicon is her eighth novel, all published by her imprint, Hypernova Publishing. She has become an internationally bestselling author since her first novel, Starshine, was published in March 2014. She has chosen to continue writing under an independent publishing model to ensure the integrity of the Aurora Rhapsody series and her ability to execute on the vision she's had for it since its genesis.
While she has been a lawyer, a software engineer and an editor, she's found the life of a full-time author preferable by several orders of magnitude, which means you can expect the next book in the Aurora Rhapsody series in just a few months.
When she isn't writing, she's gaming or working out or getting lost in the Colorado mountains that loom large outside the windows in her home. Or she's dealing with a flooded basement, or standing in a line at Walmart reading the tabloid headlines and wondering who all of those people are. Or sitting on her back porch with a glass of wine, looking up at the stars, trying to figure out what could be up there.