July 29, 2013

Review: The Contaminants by: Devin K. Smyth

The Contaminants (#1) by: Devin K. Smyth (2013)
155 pages
Genre: Young Adult/Sci-Fi
Source: I received a free copy from the author for an honest review.
Purchase: Amazon
Goodreads Summary: When America attempts to "purify" earth to maintain its own dominance, it sparks a worldwide nuclear holocaust. Teen friends Jessil and Soraj are among the few survivors. They escaped on a cruiser that now orbits the planet and is designed to help regenerate the earth's ecosystem. Soraj’s father leads the regeneration process and is hopeful that he can salvage a region in North America for the cruiser’s return.

But when Jessil discovers a message indicating her own father may have survived the holocaust back on earth, she’s determined to rescue him immediately with Soraj's aid. Can they succeed even though the planet they return to is very different from the one they left—and that their success could mean failure for the regeneration process?

My Review

I was finding it hard to write a review for The Contaminants and I’m not sure why. It was a pretty good book but I’m thinking it was just a little too crazy for me. So here is a breakdown of the different parts of the book and what I thought of them.

Setting: Part of the story takes place on a cruiser in space and the other part takes place back on Earth after a worldwide nuclear holocaust. The descriptions in this book were very well done. The setting was unique and complex. I loved reading about the space cruiser where the few people that escaped Earth resided and how it was falling apart and yet was originally built to be something amazing. The descriptions of the desolate Earth were also great. Smyth did a good job at painting the reader a vivid picture of what the new barely inhabited, except for some strange and crazy creatures, Earth looked like.

Characters: There are two POVs in this book. One is from Jessil, a teenage girl who boards the cruiser at the last minute while her father gets left behind on earth, and Soraj, a young man who is a geek and has an overly strict father. I enjoyed reading the story from Jessil’s point of view the most. She had the perfect female teenage voice and it just worked. When Soraj was narrating I felt more disconnected and didn’t really like his tone. It just seemed off. I wasn't a fan.

Plot: I would say that The Contaminants is a hard core science fiction novel for young adults. The plot was fast paced and well thought out. There were a couple of minor plot holes/unanswered questions that I picked up on while reading but nothing major. The main problem I have with the plot is how crazy it is and just way too unbelievable for my tastes. I know it is science fiction but I just couldn’t grasp the whole idea of the worldwide nuclear holocaust and the idea that one scientist could come up with a way to regenerate earth’s plants and animals and ecosystem and pretty much everything. It was just too far-fetched for me. I guess for me to enjoy a book more I need there to be just a tiny chance that this could actually happen in the future when Earth is the setting. I hope that made sense. Also a quick heads up, pay attention to the date/time stamp at the beginning of each chapter or you are going to get confused.

Overall I think that The Contanimants is a pretty good science fiction novel for young adults. It just was a little too crazy/far-fetched for my tastes, although I will say that it is pretty unique. It was a quick read and full of great descriptions. I think readers that are more into science fiction than me will enjoy this.

Side Note: I think the cover doesn't do this book justice. It could have been better executed.

**Thanks to the author for a fee copy of this book for an honest review.
My Rating: 2.5-3/5 


  1. This does sound too farfetched, and I doubt I'll be giving it a try because I'm already wary of sci-fi >_< Lovely review!

    1. It was just too crazy/far fetched for me to really enjoy it. Thanks!

  2. The world building sounds pretty good, but the plot might be off a little. The characters sound okay too. The Contaminants sounds like a pretty good Sci-fi, mabey for a library pick-up. Thanks for sharing! :)

    1. It was a crazy yet interesting read. :)

  3. Wow, nuclear holocaust? Interesting, but it does seem a little too crazy for my taste and I honestly don't like alternating POVs:p Thanks for the review!

    1. You are very welcome. Yes, it was a crazy read.

  4. It is really hard to find amazing Sci-Fi books that make it a worthwhile read. And especially be interesting and believable. Though the idea of the book does sound intriguing.

    Great review!!

    Magen Corrie
    ~Corrie the Book Crazed Girl

    1. I agree with you, which is why I don't read a lot of Sci-Fi books.



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