The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet by Becky Chambers
Follow a motley crew on an exciting journey through space—and one adventurous young explorer who discovers the meaning of family in the far reaches of the universe—in this light-hearted debut space opera from a rising sci-fi star.
Rosemary Harper doesn’t expect much when she joins the crew of the aging Wayfarer. While the patched-up ship has seen better days, it offers her a bed, a chance to explore the far-off corners of the galaxy, and most importantly, some distance from her past. An introspective young woman who learned early to keep to herself, she’s never met anyone remotely like the ship’s diverse crew, including Sissix, the exotic reptilian pilot, chatty engineers Kizzy and Jenks who keep the ship running, and Ashby, their noble captain.
Life aboard the Wayfarer is chaotic and crazy—exactly what Rosemary wants. It’s also about to get extremely dangerous when the crew is offered the job of a lifetime. Tunneling wormholes through space to a distant planet is definitely lucrative and will keep them comfortable for years. But risking her life wasn’t part of the plan. In the far reaches of deep space, the tiny Wayfarer crew will confront a host of unexpected mishaps and thrilling adventures that force them to depend on each other. To survive, Rosemary’s got to learn how to rely on this assortment of oddballs—an experience that teaches her about love and trust, and that having a family isn’t necessarily the worst thing in the universe.
Spoiler Free Review
I gave this book five stars and absolutely loved this book! I really enjoyed the writing style, it was very easy to read and described all of the technical aspects in a way that made them easy to understand but didn’t dumb them down which I really appreciate in science fiction books. I loved how there were so many different types of gender and sexuality in the species of alien, Becky Chambers created such a diverse group of species and cultures and I loved learning about them all. It is something that I have never seen before in any of my books and now I really wonder why I haven’t.
This book was a little bit harder to get into in the beginning just because there are so many different species of alien with their characteristics and cultures but once you get into it gets a lot easier to remember. Becky Chambers gave all of these different species such detailed cultures and beliefs which made them so interesting to read about.
I loved seeing so many different species in this crew and how they all live and work together. There were so many different personalities and it was definitely never a dull moment on the Wayfarer. All of our main characters were really interesting, they all had some amount of misery within their backstory and we learn about them all throughout the book. Kizzy was definitely my favourite character, she was erratic, intelligent and has absolutely no filter so would say whatever comes to mind, my favourite thing about her was that even little things could make her so incredibly happy and I’m like that too, some people think that your just easily pleased but I think that maybe we are just very happy people 😀 Her interactions with the others was always really funny and she kept their spirits up at times.
I really enjoyed the way that this book was set over the length of a long haul trip so we got to see all of the drama that they went through as well as their character growth throughout their time together. Since the plot on the story was very character driven you really couldn’t tell what was going to happen next which was great, all of the revelations that we got throughout the story were really interesting and showed us the differences between all of the species and cultures.
I definitely recommend this book to lovers of science fiction, this was one of the most unique and imaginative books that I have read. Since it is a more character driven book it is a bit slower and is more about the people, their lives and interactions so I would really recommend it to anyone who enjoys those types of books.
The relationship between Rosemary and Sissix was one of my favourites, I loved how their relationship wasn’t about sex but was instead about being their for each other in the way that they needed. I loved how after going to Sissix’s home world Rosemary really saw how for Sissix living in a place where she was never touched or got the intimacy that her species really needs to feel fulfilled really must have impacted upon her and choose to help.
At the beginning of this book I did not like Corbin, I’m sure that a lot of people felt the same way but we really got to see so much from him that really made me feel for him, especially after he finds out that he is a clone. After that moment his whole world is turned upside down and he really becomes a much kinder person after knowing how much his crew really care for him and how much he cares for them too. We really see this near the end as well when he saves Ohan, even though he didn’t want to be saved, just so that the rest of the crew wouldn’t have to lose another person.
Lovey’s death was one of the first times in a while where I have been tearing up while reading. It was just the fact that she dies but she is still there, just like if someone loses their memory. The moments when Jenks is talking to Lovey are so sad because she knows that she might not come back, which in the end she didn’t.
The ending of this book was the most action packed part and I really enjoyed seeing how Becky Chambers wrote it. I did see something coming with the Toremi, I knew that something was going to happen and that was because it was the main plot point of the novel so something would have to happen to mess it up, although I din’t expect them to have to go through the sublayer in a failing ship but it was really exciting to see them work together to save themselves.
I did like the ending of this novel but I am really hoping that we see more from this crew later on in the series since I really don’t think that their stories are finished. I have so many unanswered questions and I need to know what happens next for them.
Thank you for reading!