Today I’m going to do a review of The Long Way to a Small, Angy Planet by Becky Chambers. This is a sci-fi book that is very original and so well-written!
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.
The Long Way To A Small, Angry Planet is truly unique in many ways. The concept itself isn’t very original, it’s about a crew of a spaceship that travels around the universe. However, what makes this story so wholly unique is the characters and the worldbuilding. The characters were all so different in so many ways. Not only because of their personalities, but they weren’t even all from the same species.
“Ninety percent of all problems are caused by people being assholes.”
“What causes the other ten percent?” asked Kizzy.
“Natural disasters,” said Nib.”
Since it is a sci-fi novel that is set in the far far future, other species have been discovered and not only that, but Humans now live in a universe with many different cultures, languages and none of these have not gotten a focus in this book. Becky Chambers has put so much time into giving all the species cultural habits, historical facts, languages and so much more. The characters also got so much time to develop, and there is so much to say about every single one of them. But I’ll let you discover them by yourself.
“That’s not the same. What happened to you, to your species, it’s . . . it doesn’t even compare.’
‘Why? Because it’s worse?’
‘But it still compares. If you have a fractured bone, and I’ve broken every bone in my body, does that make your fracture go away? Does it hurt you any less, knowing that I am in more pain?”
What I liked less about this book was how it was quite slow. I knew going into this book that it wasn’t going to be a fast-paced book, but still, I wished it was just a little more intense. This story is definitely character-driven, which is good, but it would be nice if it was a bit more plot-driven too. Sometimes I put down the book and not pick it up for days, which is something I normally don’t do with a book. That was just because there was not really anything dragging me into the story. Another thing I didn’t like as much was how some things got a lot of focus and others did not. I would love to read more about a certain relationship in the story (if you read it, you probably know which one I mean).
“The truth is, Rosemary, that you are capable of anything. Good or bad. You always have been, and you always will be. Given the right push, you, too, could do horrible things. That darkness exists within all of us.
I thought this was the first book in a series, so I thought these little things that bothered me, might improve in the second book. But it turns out, that it’s a companion novel and not a series! So now I’m a bit sad because I won’t read about my crew anymore… they are truly something!
Overall, I loved how elaborate everything was developed. The characters and the world were amazing and I loved reading about them, but if the story was a bit more plot-driven, I think I would have loved it more. I am giving this book 4 stars because, despite my minor negatives, I really enjoyed reading it! I definitely recommend this if you like series like Doctor Who or Firefly!
“I can wait for the galaxy outside to get a little kinder.”