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Vakov Fukasawa is a Reaper. An elite soldier injected with a dangerous drug called stormtech: the DNA of a genocidal alien race, the Shenoi. It makes him stronger, faster, more aggressive. At a price. A price that, if the House of Suns cult isn't stopped, all of humanity will have to pay. Vakov saved his estranged brother from the cult and killed their leader. Now they want Vakov Fukasawa is a Reaper. An elite soldier injected with a dangerous drug called stormtech: the DNA of a genocidal alien race, the Shenoi. It makes him stronger, faster, more aggressive. At a price. A price that, if the House of Suns cult isn't stopped, all of humanity will have to pay. Vakov saved his estranged brother from the cult and killed their leader. Now they want his head on a spike, and they're hunting him and his friends down to get it, while continuing their mission to awaken the Shenoi and plunge the galaxy into mindless violence and chaos. There's a dangerous journey ahead, but Vakov and his misfit crew of eccentric aliens, troubled bounty hunters and rogue hackers will take any risk to stop the alien awakening. Only there's one risk Vakov hasn't shared: the one he himself poses. He got a terrifying glimpse of the Shenoi in the depths of interstellar space, and the violent nightmares he's suffered since suggest their DNA isn't just inside his body - he might already be fighting them for his mind . . .


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Vakov Fukasawa is a Reaper. An elite soldier injected with a dangerous drug called stormtech: the DNA of a genocidal alien race, the Shenoi. It makes him stronger, faster, more aggressive. At a price. A price that, if the House of Suns cult isn't stopped, all of humanity will have to pay. Vakov saved his estranged brother from the cult and killed their leader. Now they want Vakov Fukasawa is a Reaper. An elite soldier injected with a dangerous drug called stormtech: the DNA of a genocidal alien race, the Shenoi. It makes him stronger, faster, more aggressive. At a price. A price that, if the House of Suns cult isn't stopped, all of humanity will have to pay. Vakov saved his estranged brother from the cult and killed their leader. Now they want his head on a spike, and they're hunting him and his friends down to get it, while continuing their mission to awaken the Shenoi and plunge the galaxy into mindless violence and chaos. There's a dangerous journey ahead, but Vakov and his misfit crew of eccentric aliens, troubled bounty hunters and rogue hackers will take any risk to stop the alien awakening. Only there's one risk Vakov hasn't shared: the one he himself poses. He got a terrifying glimpse of the Shenoi in the depths of interstellar space, and the violent nightmares he's suffered since suggest their DNA isn't just inside his body - he might already be fighting them for his mind . . .

30 review for Blindspace

  1. 4 out of 5

    Nick Borrelli

    I'm primarily a fantasy reader these days, but every once in a while a really great SF book/series totally hits that sweet spot for me. The Common series by Jeremy Szal is absolutely one of those. After reading Szal's brilliant debut novel Stormblood last year, the follow-up BLINDSPACE became one of my most anticipated books in a long time. I literally could not deal with the intervening time between because I needed to have the sequel in my hands, such was the amazing quality of the first book. I'm primarily a fantasy reader these days, but every once in a while a really great SF book/series totally hits that sweet spot for me. The Common series by Jeremy Szal is absolutely one of those. After reading Szal's brilliant debut novel Stormblood last year, the follow-up BLINDSPACE became one of my most anticipated books in a long time. I literally could not deal with the intervening time between because I needed to have the sequel in my hands, such was the amazing quality of the first book. Well, turns out it was well worth the wait and upon finishing this one, I'm stumped as to how to articulate just how much I enjoyed it. But I will try my best. BLINDSPACE picks up pretty much immediately following the events of book one. Main character Vakov has been put through some of the worst stuff imaginable and although much battered and scarred, is undeterred in his main focus to free his brother from enemy clutches and get back to some semblance of a normal existence. But there's a ton of harrowing things in his way, and they set the stage for the incredible story that plays out in this book. The sequel to Stormblood is a slight departure when it comes to pace and fight sequences, but that's understandable given that book one was unrelenting it seemed when it came to breakneck action. BLINDSPACE settles down a bit and gives much more insight into the interpersonal connections between Vak and his fellow Reapers, as well as with his estranged brother Artyom. There seems to be some thawing of the cold war between them after what happened in Stormblood, and one of the things that I loved about this book is the scenes where they interact with each other and we get to see them attempting to repair their fractured relationship. Some of these scenes were incredibly moving and emotional. It becomes obvious that there still is a strong bond of brotherhood between the two, but it has been so damaged by words and deeds of the past that getting back to where they once were is challenging to say the least. Vak's relationship with his team of Reapers and alien friends is also rocky at times. The alien stormtech that has been injected into his body often causes moments of intense anger and loss of impulse control, which leads to some friction with those on his team who feel he sometimes goes it alone in loose cannon fashion and maybe doesn't consult them as much as they would like. It's an interesting dichotomy because at his core Vak is someone who is selfless and would give anything, even sacrifice himself for the benefit of his team and his brother, and yet he struggles with allowing those close to him to break down his walls and carry some of the load occasionally. Vak is definitely more fleshed out in BLINDSPACE and humanizing him in that way truly made me more emotionally attached to his character than I was previously. Make no mistake, there is still a tremendous amount of action and cool space confrontations in this one. So it doesn't completely take a backseat to the more character-driven nature of this book. There are some crazy battle scenes and the mind-blowing tech concepts that permeated through book one are still here and better than ever. We get treated to even more information regarding the origins and effects of stormtech, which I found a delightful revelation as someone who has been captivated by this mystery from the time it was introduced into the story. However, don't think the Jeremy Szal has given the entire game away, as he has definitely kept some cards hidden up his sleeves for upcoming books I'm sure. The biggest compliment that I can give BLINDSPACE is that it not only builds on and considerably expands the initial story, but also improves upon it in truly significant ways. I was touched by the deeply personal moments, thrilled by the intense action, and mesmerized by what continues to be some of the coolest and most innovative technology and science I've come across. If you are a fan of Iain M. Banks, Peter F. Hamilton, & Neal Asher, you absolutely need to be reading the books of Jeremy Szal. To not do so would be to rob yourself of one of the best new brilliant voices in the genre right now. It's staggering to think that he has only scratched the surface of his craft and we will be hopefully get to read decades of future works by him. Meanwhile, I can't wait to see how his first series progresses and ultimately concludes. Right now I'm just enjoying and savoring going along on this wonderfully hypnotic trip.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Nicholas Eames

    As good--or better--than the first. Cyberpunk meets Mass Effect, with a touch of Star Wars for dramatic effect. Great action, and some touching "found family" moments. The narration on this one, as with Stormblood, is excellent. Looking forward to the next! As good--or better--than the first. Cyberpunk meets Mass Effect, with a touch of Star Wars for dramatic effect. Great action, and some touching "found family" moments. The narration on this one, as with Stormblood, is excellent. Looking forward to the next!

  3. 5 out of 5

    Rachel (TheShadesofOrange)

    4.0 Stars This was a great sequel that, in my opinion, was even better than the first book. I enjoyed Stormblood, but I admitted that cyberpunk thrillers are not my favourite subgenre of science fiction.  Blindspace, however, leanee much more space opera, which is one my favourite subgenre. The narrative in this one was fantastic with the right balance between action and character development. There is a touch of humor to this series, but not too much to take away from the seriousness of the story 4.0 Stars This was a great sequel that, in my opinion, was even better than the first book. I enjoyed Stormblood, but I admitted that cyberpunk thrillers are not my favourite subgenre of science fiction.  Blindspace, however, leanee much more space opera, which is one my favourite subgenre. The narrative in this one was fantastic with the right balance between action and character development. There is a touch of humor to this series, but not too much to take away from the seriousness of the story. Dare I say it, but this sequel gave me Expanse vibes. Something about the tone, light humour and character work just gave me a similar feeling. I would recommend this book to science fiction fans, but you will need to start back at the beginning with Stormblood. Disclaimer I received a copy of this book from the publisher.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Nick Martell

    So I absolutely loved this book. Not only does all of the wonderful weirdness and tense action that began in Stormblood get increased 100x, Blindspace does a wonderful job of expanding the world with new fascinating alien races and cultures, showcases terrifying gambits on both sides of the conflict, and has adrenaline soaked action scenes that made me race through the book to learn more and find out what was going to happen. Easiest recommendation of my life.

  5. 4 out of 5

    M.T. Preston, Jr.

    I thoroughly enjoyed this action-packed, character driven sequel to Szal’s debut, Stormblood. The stakes are raised, the scope expanded, and the character relationships deepened. Everything a good sequel should do. For a 650+ page novel, this one just tore along, and I blew through it in a few days. I’m really looking forward to book three, and I’ll be keeping an eye out for more from Szal in the future.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Jeremy Szal

    22.7.2022: The mass-market paperback edition of BLINDSPACE is published today in the UK/Australia, with Canada and the US to shortly follow. You can grab a copy at your retailer of choice over at Gollancz's website. +++++++++++++++++++ After nearly three years, BLINDSPACE is finally out! I think it's pretty good, but I'm likely biased. It's the sequel to STORMBLOOD, which means more action, character trauma, and oodles weird alien tech. The space-opera elements get cranked up to eleven, with a far 22.7.2022: The mass-market paperback edition of BLINDSPACE is published today in the UK/Australia, with Canada and the US to shortly follow. You can grab a copy at your retailer of choice over at Gollancz's website. +++++++++++++++++++ After nearly three years, BLINDSPACE is finally out! I think it's pretty good, but I'm likely biased. It's the sequel to STORMBLOOD, which means more action, character trauma, and oodles weird alien tech. The space-opera elements get cranked up to eleven, with a far greater focus on character and relationships. There's four new characters who join Vakov's adventure, two of whom you may already know, and not all of them are human. This book contains: haunted alien ruins, alien drug dealers, themes of sibling relationships and brotherhood, found families, nomad cybergoths, trauma, space cults, drug addiction, aliens with attitude, rogue bounty hunters, and gratuitous mayhem. You know, all the good stuff. I hope you all enjoy the next chapter in Vakov's adventure!

  7. 4 out of 5

    Mário Coelho

    Blindspace is an improvement over an already impressive debut in Stormblood. The prose is as punchy and electric as before, with some of the best action scenes in the genre, but now we also have a plethora of new, neurotic characters to root for, hate, or grieve (and the author doesn't pull any punches). And a few sci-fi body horror scenes here and there, in case you're also a big fan of cringing in disgust. The fact that I, a huge snob, have such a big love for a pulpy, unpretentious saga like t Blindspace is an improvement over an already impressive debut in Stormblood. The prose is as punchy and electric as before, with some of the best action scenes in the genre, but now we also have a plethora of new, neurotic characters to root for, hate, or grieve (and the author doesn't pull any punches). And a few sci-fi body horror scenes here and there, in case you're also a big fan of cringing in disgust. The fact that I, a huge snob, have such a big love for a pulpy, unpretentious saga like this one is a statement to how talented Jeremy Szal is. As strange as this comparison might sound, Stormblood and Blindspace remind me of Bioware's games pre-suckage.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Tammy

    The nitty-gritty: A nail-biting adventure that raises the stakes even higher, Blindspace was a solid sequel and a lot of fun. I’ve been excited for Blindspace ever since I finished Stormblood last year, and I'm so glad I was able to squeeze this in for SciFiMonth. I’ll admit I didn’t enjoy it quite as much as the first book in the series, but the elements that worked really well for me made up for some of the missteps. Jeremy Szal has created a fascinating futuristic world in which an alien drug The nitty-gritty: A nail-biting adventure that raises the stakes even higher, Blindspace was a solid sequel and a lot of fun. I’ve been excited for Blindspace ever since I finished Stormblood last year, and I'm so glad I was able to squeeze this in for SciFiMonth. I’ll admit I didn’t enjoy it quite as much as the first book in the series, but the elements that worked really well for me made up for some of the missteps. Jeremy Szal has created a fascinating futuristic world in which an alien drug called stormtech has taken over the satellite world of Compass and is threatening to spread to even more worlds, unless Vakov Fukasawa and his fireteam can stop it. Blindspace is full of high stakes, non-stop action, but Szal also knows when to dial things down and spend some quieter moments with his characters. Vak is a Reaper, a bio engineered human who was injected with alien DNA in order to make him an unbeatable soldier. When the story opens, Vak and his fireteam—a group of trusted friends who have joined him in the crusade against stormtech—are gearing up to continue their battle against the Suns, a cult who is using stormtech to infiltrate every part of Compass and beyond. But something strange is happening to Vak. He’s starting to hear voices and have violent dreams, almost as if someone is getting into his head. When he realizes that his weird visions are tied to the Shenoi, the long dead alien race responsible for stormtech, Vak knows that he must shut down the Suns' operation once and for all. But that’s easier said than done, as Vak and his crew are about to find out. One of my favorite things about Blindspace is the way the character development and the group dynamics were handled. Szal does a great job of setting up believable conflicts between his characters, and there was a natural ebb and flow to the way the team worked together. In order to do this right, you have to start with great characters, and in this the author succeeds with flying colors. Vak is the star of the show, especially since the story is told from his first person point of view. Vak struggles daily with the stormtech that invades his body. He’s learned to control it and live with it over the years, but in this story, something strange is happening to him, and the stormtech is starting to control him. This sets up a scenario where some of the relationships with his teammates are starting to fracture. Vak can’t always control his words and actions, and in many ways he’s pushing his friends away.  The author continues to explore the ever-changing relationship between Vak and his brother Artyom. I won’t go into their past history, because you’ll learn a lot about it if you read Stormblood, but let’s just say they’ve hurt each other in the past, but the fact that they are brothers and the only family left makes their bond unbreakable, no matter what happens. There are plenty of ups and downs between them, but I was glad to see that they are able to move past some of the bad stuff and continue to help and support each other. Some of the characters return from the first book, including Grim, who is almost like a brother to Vak; Katherine, the mission coordinator who is the (sort of) love interest for Vak; Quilan, a level headed Torvan, Saren and Jasken. We meet a new character named Mandy who turned out to be a favorite of mine. Mandy is a kick-ass, smoking, drinking sharpshooter with a wicked sense of humor, and Juvens is a Kaiji who joins forces with Vak and his fireteam. I also loved the interactions between Quilan and Jasken, who butt heads a lot of the time, mostly because of their differences. But little by little their relationship grows into one of grudging acceptance and friendship, and I thought it was so well done. In fact, you could say the theme of Blindspace is change. One of the strongest elements in the book is the group dynamic, and I was fascinated by how Vak and his fireteam performed together under pressure. Even with interpersonal issues on the side, they know when to put their emotions in a box, necessary because they always seem to be fighting for their lives. But between fights, there is quite a bit of nice tension among the crew. Friendships are tested, hidden truths are revealed, but eventually most—but not all—of these conflicts are smoothed over. Vak, being the leader of the group, makes some awful mistakes and pays the price, but I thought the author did a great job of resolving these conflicts in a believable way. The story has an abundance of high stakes action scenes, fueled with testosterone as well as stormtech. Readers who prefer their science fiction action-heavy will not be disappointed. Vak and his team are never far away from the next dangerous, life threatening assignment. The bad guys are truly evil, and not everyone makes it out alive, unfortunately. And while I enjoyed a lot of these scenes, I have to admit it was a bit too much at times. Szal relentlessly abuses his poor characters, putting them in some dire situations, and while there are quiet moments scattered here and there, most of the story involves deadly conflicts between the team and their enemies. At times the story takes on a grimdark quality, with extreme violence and even torture scenes, so do be aware if that isn’t your sort of thing. What makes this grimdark so addicting, though, is how different it is from fantasy. You won’t find swords or axes here, rather Vak and his team are armed with futuristic blasters and explosives, not to mention the stormtech that’s raging through Vak’s body, which is almost a weapon itself. Once again, Szal’s world-building is fantastic. I love the dangerous underground world of drug trafficking and the horrible ways the alien drug can be used to change a person’s body. The author goes into detailed descriptions, and for the most part I loved learning more about the world. But here’s where the story started to lose me. This book felt so long to me, and took me almost two weeks to finish. I think it could have easily been trimmed by eliminating a lot of the descriptive passages, which go on longer than they need to. I get it, there’s a lot of cool world-building to explain, but I like it better when it’s presented organically through dialog or a character’s actions. Szal’s dialog is strong for the most part, and I especially loved the banter between characters. It added a much needed lightness to the story, which is pretty grim and serious for the most part. What didn’t always work for me were the emotional exchanges that are scattered throughout. I’m assuming he was trying to add another layer to the story or counteract all the dark moments, but honestly, a lot of this dialog comes across as sappy, and just didn’t fit in with all the violence. But these issues aside, Blindspace was so much fun. The story ends on a nail-biter of a cliffhanger, and it’s going to be torture waiting for the next book in the series! Readers who love tech-heavy, action-packed sci-fi should definitely catch up with this series so you’ll be ready. Big thanks to the author and publisher for providing a review copy.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Paul English-Wolfe

    Jeremy Szal’s debut novel, Stormblood, was one of my favourite books of 2020 and one of the finest, most captivating science-fiction novels that I’ve read in the past few years. Chances are that if you’re reading this review, you’ve already devoured Stormblood; though perhaps not and you’re just tracking the series until it’s completed, at which point you’ll dive in. With that said, there’s a 99% chance that you already know how great a series ‘The Common’ is already shaping up to be. BLINDSPACE, Jeremy Szal’s debut novel, Stormblood, was one of my favourite books of 2020 and one of the finest, most captivating science-fiction novels that I’ve read in the past few years. Chances are that if you’re reading this review, you’ve already devoured Stormblood; though perhaps not and you’re just tracking the series until it’s completed, at which point you’ll dive in. With that said, there’s a 99% chance that you already know how great a series ‘The Common’ is already shaping up to be. BLINDSPACE, like Stormblood before it, is a brutal read, heaving with exquisite world-building and populated with wonderful agency-infused characters. All of the emotions, the gut-punches, and the constant sense of wonderment are back but dialled to eleven and delivered with a far more developed and assertive voice. Stormblood, while gritty and frequently harrowing, now feels like Szal taking it easy. He knows the essence of his characters, but he also knows his reader, and with this knowledge, he can, and will, play you with the skill and relish of a sadistic conductor. Characters are pushed to their limits, tortured, punished, and you feel everything just as keenly as they do. The stakes are very much real, and you can’t take for granted the fact that a character will survive or that they’ll be in one piece if they do. The characters themselves are fantastic, each of them unique and with their own rich backgrounds. Vakov himself demonstrates a colossal amount of personal growth throughout the book, with him struggling to transition from a one-man army to a responsible commander but also struggling with having Artyom back in his life. For all the sexy, jaw-dropping tech on display, at its core, BLINDSPACE still feels primarily a story about, and an exploration of, brotherhood and relationships. There is a great shining web of connection between all of the players, and Szal masterfully plucks these strings in both the calmer moments of downtime, but also during the rabid rage of combat. Rest assured that the tech is just as cool and drool-inducing as ever—suits, guns, ships, everything you want in your SF is here. The universe of The Common feels like a great playground of imagination, and you can tell that Szal is having a riot there; his passion and enjoyment are palpable and feed directly into his unique style of high-energy storytelling. Each page is saturated with both adrenaline and emotion to create a story that is as relentless as it is captivating. As a sequel, BLINDSPACE was everything I wanted and a whole lot more. While a great many questions were answered, so many more are left out there in the black. Roll on book three, though whether my heart will be able to take it, I’m not too sure.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Craig Slater

    Another great read from Jeremy. Blindspace (book #2) feels very organic and fleshed out. The world has a lot of detail as characters move through it and he obviously feels more at home within it. Jeremy's writing is a big step up too, he obviously learnt a lot from book one and this reads really really well. Lots of good tech and such, that's described well, but doesn't halt the flow of the narrative (a hard thing to do that many of the big names struggle with), and some pretty serious action. H Another great read from Jeremy. Blindspace (book #2) feels very organic and fleshed out. The world has a lot of detail as characters move through it and he obviously feels more at home within it. Jeremy's writing is a big step up too, he obviously learnt a lot from book one and this reads really really well. Lots of good tech and such, that's described well, but doesn't halt the flow of the narrative (a hard thing to do that many of the big names struggle with), and some pretty serious action. Honestly. It's mostly action. If you loved number one you definitely need to get into this as it's more of the same and better. If you liked number one this is worth a shot as it steps up and impresses.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Erin

    The big blue bastion Vakov is back, this time with friends. Blindspace brings everything a middle of the trilogy should - high stakes, brutal gut punches, searing tension, and a wrenching finale. Szal writes with grit and heart and gin-flavoured candor, meaning it burns on the way down.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Gary O'Brien

    An absolute thrilling sequel with more action, more emotion and a lot more Juvens! Stormblood was one of my favourite sci-fi reads in recent years, and Szal has outdone himself with Blindspace.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Katie Soderlund

    Thank you to the publisher and to NetGalley for this digital ARC, it has not affected my honest review. Having read the first book 'Stormblood' in advance for reading this ARC, I feel like I had a lot more knowledge before diving into this sequel. The journey that Jeremy Szal takes Vak Fukasawa on in this book ties in closely to what happens in the first one and improves upon what was built there. I loved the internal workings of his mind during this book, he was more uncertain than ever because Thank you to the publisher and to NetGalley for this digital ARC, it has not affected my honest review. Having read the first book 'Stormblood' in advance for reading this ARC, I feel like I had a lot more knowledge before diving into this sequel. The journey that Jeremy Szal takes Vak Fukasawa on in this book ties in closely to what happens in the first one and improves upon what was built there. I loved the internal workings of his mind during this book, he was more uncertain than ever because of his newfound love for his team, which made him hesitant in a way he wasn't in the first. 'Blindspace' made the world of the Common bigger and grander, with more of a focus on the House of Suns cult and their reasoning behind their blind devotion to the Shenoi. His relationship with every individual- from the hacker Grim and space police Katherine to the aliens Jasken and Juvens- were forefront of this book, emphasising the importance of Vak not being alone again. His experiences with his brother, especially in the sections where he returned to his home planet for the first time, were some of my favourites. This was an excellent sequel and incredibly well written, with fast paced action and powerful characters. I normally wouldn't read scifi like this, but I'm so glad I took a chance on this series and I hope there's more in the future.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Matthew Cobb

    Awesome, loved this as much as the first if not more. Hard hitting, stomach churning great fun.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Fern

    What an INSANE sequel to an already action-packed, alien-drugged up adventure of a book that Stormblood is. Szal was absolutely ruthless in Blindspace, conjuring plot twists like you've never encountered and orchestrating fight/battle scenes that will blow your mind away. I cannot wait for Wolfskin to see where Szal takes Vakov and the rest of his fireteam. What an INSANE sequel to an already action-packed, alien-drugged up adventure of a book that Stormblood is. Szal was absolutely ruthless in Blindspace, conjuring plot twists like you've never encountered and orchestrating fight/battle scenes that will blow your mind away. I cannot wait for Wolfskin to see where Szal takes Vakov and the rest of his fireteam.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Richard

    STORMBLOOD was an interesting and brutal twist on the effects of drugs relatively unknown to the wider community with devastating consequences. But at its heart was a story of found family and what one will do to protect that family. BLINDSPACE expanse on that narrative, while upping the ante with a grand space opera setting, filled with interesting characters, gang wars, dark secrets and violence to boot. Vakov Fukasawa finds himself with his own team while still trying to find his feet. The ev STORMBLOOD was an interesting and brutal twist on the effects of drugs relatively unknown to the wider community with devastating consequences. But at its heart was a story of found family and what one will do to protect that family. BLINDSPACE expanse on that narrative, while upping the ante with a grand space opera setting, filled with interesting characters, gang wars, dark secrets and violence to boot. Vakov Fukasawa finds himself with his own team while still trying to find his feet. The ever evolving situation with the House of Suns forces him to make decisions he feels are right, but the outcome is never good. Szal does an incredible job of showing us antagonists with such fanatical vision that they would maim, torture and kill anyone - and their friends or family if needed - to see that vision realised. Vakov's team is filled a mismatch of characters with such differing thoughts and feelings that the pay off in the end is worth having them around. BLINDSPACE is not without its scenes that are normally found in your nightmares, but it is also filled with stories of redemption, family and the love of others usually discovered by chance. While Vakov might have saved the day in STORMBLOOD, he still has a lot to learn about himself in BLINDSPACE through his friends, particularly Grim. It's a brilliant showcase that reflects how we're not all the same people we were a year, five years, or ten years ago. And holding too that belief can damage our relationships.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Joel Alexander

    This is a great sequel to Stormbood. It picks up pretty soon after the first book ended, and the action kicks in quickly, which drew me into the story. Blindspace really builds on the world already set out in the original and adds much more depth. The involvement of alien races, their culture, and technology really helps in filling in the details of the Common universe (gave Mass Effect vibes for anyone into those games). The main character was great in the first series and is built out more as This is a great sequel to Stormbood. It picks up pretty soon after the first book ended, and the action kicks in quickly, which drew me into the story. Blindspace really builds on the world already set out in the original and adds much more depth. The involvement of alien races, their culture, and technology really helps in filling in the details of the Common universe (gave Mass Effect vibes for anyone into those games). The main character was great in the first series and is built out more as relationships with other characters develop in this continuation. The villain is also really well written, coming across as really evil without becoming a caricature. Pacing was just right; as mentioned, the action picks up quickly then has a few chapters to catch breath before going again throughout. I look forward to the next the the series to see how the story concludes.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Kelvin

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Blindspace is everything a sequel should be. It builds upon the previous book whilst expanding the world with new gruesome factions and frightening villains, with lots of gritty action and incredible setpieces. Blindspace also dedicates a lot of time for slower, more personal development moments, as Vakov understands the responsibilities of leading a fireteam, and dealing with his failures as a brother. The final act especially had me on the edge of my seat, and I cannot wait for the sequel.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Runalong

    Hugely enjoyable space action adventure this time with a focus on action and brilliant set pieces. Despite that some great character work too make this a very absorbing series! Can’t wait for the next book! https://www.runalongtheshelves.net/bl... Hugely enjoyable space action adventure this time with a focus on action and brilliant set pieces. Despite that some great character work too make this a very absorbing series! Can’t wait for the next book! https://www.runalongtheshelves.net/bl...

  20. 4 out of 5

    Justin

    Brilliant follow up from “Stormblood”, loved it , great characters ,fast paced ,great action scenes. All in all a very good sci-fi book .

  21. 4 out of 5

    Rebekah

    A really great sequel , to a great first one . If you like anything to do with sci-fi , dystopia, or even anything modern , a must read

  22. 4 out of 5

    David polley

    Book two continues the themes of family, ptsd, drug abuse and the effects of a war torn world on the worlds within the common. Jeremy continues to evolve the series and make you love a new cast of characters while your praying not to lose anyone during the heavy battles of which there is many. Lots of anime style food porn in here to make your exhaustingly hungry as well as all the techno gable you want from a serious sci fi / cyber punk romp that leans heavy into similar territory we see in game Book two continues the themes of family, ptsd, drug abuse and the effects of a war torn world on the worlds within the common. Jeremy continues to evolve the series and make you love a new cast of characters while your praying not to lose anyone during the heavy battles of which there is many. Lots of anime style food porn in here to make your exhaustingly hungry as well as all the techno gable you want from a serious sci fi / cyber punk romp that leans heavy into similar territory we see in games like mass effect. Can’t wait for book 3!

  23. 4 out of 5

    Louisa Heaton

    Blindspace is a rip-roaring read from the get-go, full of adventure, thrills and intrigue. This seems to be Book Two in a series, so i kind of wished I'd read Book One, but I was still able to enjoy this. The author, Jeremy Szal knows how to play with his unique blend of characters to create conflict and story and I very much enjoyed this story. I will now have to go look up Book One! Blindspace is a rip-roaring read from the get-go, full of adventure, thrills and intrigue. This seems to be Book Two in a series, so i kind of wished I'd read Book One, but I was still able to enjoy this. The author, Jeremy Szal knows how to play with his unique blend of characters to create conflict and story and I very much enjoyed this story. I will now have to go look up Book One!

  24. 5 out of 5

    Loulou Szal

    BLINDSPACE improves on STORMBLOOD in every way, while adding a unique twist of it's own. The characters, especially Vakov, are excellent and have fully-fleshed out emotional depths that drive them. Watching their feelings develop as their relationships with each other improve and become richer is done so well. Vakov has become a lot smarter and more tactical, balancing out the aggressive alien DNA in his blood that makes him want to fight, and it's great to see them all succeed. My favourite cha BLINDSPACE improves on STORMBLOOD in every way, while adding a unique twist of it's own. The characters, especially Vakov, are excellent and have fully-fleshed out emotional depths that drive them. Watching their feelings develop as their relationships with each other improve and become richer is done so well. Vakov has become a lot smarter and more tactical, balancing out the aggressive alien DNA in his blood that makes him want to fight, and it's great to see them all succeed. My favourite character was Grim, and I suspect I'm not alone in this! Themes of brotherhood, found families, trauma, forgiveness and change are fully explored here, and makes you care so, so much about these people. The scenes between Vakov and Artyom, seeing them slowly build their relationship back up again after so much damage has been done, was heart-breaking and heart-warming all at once. There's plenty of action scenes, though! The more intense scenes, you're feeling intense dread, not knowing if they're going to make it out alive (and not everyone does). There's plenty of juicy, explosive action scenes that leap off the page - including a very memorable one on a moon, with crazy and wild weapons, tech, and armor galore. The space opera elements are much larger here, with talks of massive alien spaceships, galactic politics, nomad factions of deep-space, armadas, and deep dark galactic secrets just waiting to be unlocked. BLINDSPACE is a fantastic, heart-pounding adventure through space that takes the story to some very unpredictable, very very emotional places that ache in the best way possible. Highly recommended!

  25. 5 out of 5

    Ryan Martell

    A bigger, meatier, bloodier, and more relentless sequel. And yet, there's still moments of downtime and focus on character and relationships, which are poignant and refreshing as they are heart-warming. These books are proving to be some of my favourites in the genre! Can't wait for the next!1 A bigger, meatier, bloodier, and more relentless sequel. And yet, there's still moments of downtime and focus on character and relationships, which are poignant and refreshing as they are heart-warming. These books are proving to be some of my favourites in the genre! Can't wait for the next!1

  26. 5 out of 5

    Kat

    Definitely enjoyed blindspace as much as I did with Stormblood. Jeremy Szal has wrote brilliant story's that keep you wanting more Definitely enjoyed blindspace as much as I did with Stormblood. Jeremy Szal has wrote brilliant story's that keep you wanting more

  27. 5 out of 5

    Phil

    I need to start my review with the tough before I get to the good. The rest will be disjointed because I'm not sure how best to approach expressing my feelings about this novel... Two firsts come out of this novel: (1) I've never read a book so poorly proofread and (2) I've never written a review that I distinctly hope the author reads. I am not exaggerating on the first point. On average, every five pages there was an obvious typo, misspelling, extra word, missing word, or nonsensical sentence. I need to start my review with the tough before I get to the good. The rest will be disjointed because I'm not sure how best to approach expressing my feelings about this novel... Two firsts come out of this novel: (1) I've never read a book so poorly proofread and (2) I've never written a review that I distinctly hope the author reads. I am not exaggerating on the first point. On average, every five pages there was an obvious typo, misspelling, extra word, missing word, or nonsensical sentence. I noted this same problem in my review of Stormblood (see here : https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...). At the time, I gave Szal the benefit of the doubt. Blindspace not only failed to correct those issues but compounded them. If you come across this review, you are probably thinking to yourself that it isn't as big a deal as he (me) is making it out to be. It is. I honestly cannot fathom how this book got published in this form. I really like Szal. I think it is partly because he reminds me a little of myself 20 years ago (except Szal has more creative spark in his pinky than I have entirely). So I don't say this lightly: I'd be embarrassed if I expressed to the world that this was my best. As I said in my review of the first novel in the Common series, I assume that Szal does not seek to be a forgotten and unknown author. If he continues to publish novels that are this poorly drafted, he will. That is just fact. So I say to Szal, you need more than Maureen Speller (credited at the end as the Proof reader). I will happily volunteer to be a beta reader. I've done it before. But this is just painful to see in what I believe is an amazingly creative world. Mr. Szal, I always root for the underdog and I'm committed to seeing this series through. But I cannot recommend this novel, or this series, unless the books are published without these errors. Again, never in my life have I read a book that contains this many issues with it. I've said my piece. The rest will be a mixed bag... Book one of the Common, Stormblood, showed promise but the execution failed as it amounted to a repetitive cycle of our main character getting captured, tortured, gleaning a piece of information to form a new lead, and then repeat. Szal still incorporates some of that formulae in this novel, but he does expand on the narrative. Most importantly, he does a much better job of exploring the relationships among our main cast. Szal also gives us another glimpse into Vakov's past. I felt the best part about Stormblood was the flashbacks to the Reaper war. Szal again does a great job in these flashbacks - although not from the Reaper war - and it is probably the highlight of the novel. Unfortunately, they occur infrequently and then stop entirely by a third of the way through the book. At times within these pages, I marvel at Szal as he creates a powerful narrative and impactful scenes. At other times, I cringed. It was tropey, sophomoric, and unoriginal. I don't know how else to explain it. I think at end of day, it represents someone who has talent and potential but hasn't fully reached it yet. So we see moments of brilliance but too often Szal falls back on his safety net of writing through his influences. Everything I wrote in my review about Stormblood (except, as noted above, some improvements to the overall plot) applies here. The best I can explain it: imagine having an amazing recipe and the freshest ingredients. Everything is exactly what you want, you can literally smell and taste the flavors of these perfect foods. But the cook rushes through the process so sometimes you get hints of great flavor and other times it is inedible. I hate writing these words but unfortunately, that sums up this book the best I can manage it. Final Verdict: 2.5 out of 5 One full star deducted for the atrocious editing (and that is being generous). The overarching plot and world-building here are top notch. I'd put them on a par with any of the giants in the genre. But it is up to Szal to execute. Through two novels in the series, he hasn't. The worst of it? He could eliminate one of the biggest problems by taking more pride in his work. Szal could write, objectively for sake of argument, the best book ever written and it could receive tepid reviews and go unread. Timing and other factors outside his control could relegate an amazing work to irrelevance. Szal cannot control that. He can control whether sentences like "'That's brilliant,' Katherine said we as we drank, sharing grins." [sic] from appearing in his novels (again, this happened on average once every 5-10 pages ... totally unacceptable in a published novel from a major publishing company). It's up to you Mr. Szal. You've come up with a great story. Can you execute it? And can you do it properly? I hope you can and I will be there rooting for you.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Brian Clegg

    This sequel to Jeremy Szal's Stormblood builds on the original novel's strength in providing page-turning battle sequences as Szal's self-tortured main character Vakov Fukasawa tries to deal with the way that his stormtech - alien DNA he has been injected with - is transforming his body and interfering with his mind. I'm not usually a fan of either heavy military SF or books the thickness of a brick, but it says something for Szal's pacing that the pages fly by. This could have been just another This sequel to Jeremy Szal's Stormblood builds on the original novel's strength in providing page-turning battle sequences as Szal's self-tortured main character Vakov Fukasawa tries to deal with the way that his stormtech - alien DNA he has been injected with - is transforming his body and interfering with his mind. I'm not usually a fan of either heavy military SF or books the thickness of a brick, but it says something for Szal's pacing that the pages fly by. This could have been just another law and order versus drug dealers plot, but by bringing in a cult that worships the apparently long-gone evil alien race whose DNA is in the stormtech as a route to a transhuman future, plus various groups with a grudge against the not-exactly-squeaky clean law enforcement grouping, we get a much richer mix of problems for the main characters to face. As before, Szal also provides a great setting in the hollowed-out asteroid Compass, with everything from sub-Blade Runner nastiness to vast ship docks and smart resorts and bars. The flaws of the original novel remain, though they feel a little less significant. The few backstory chapters remain padding, and there is still too much agonising over the nature of stormtech and what it is doing to the main character. Szal seems obsessed with botanicals in gin - they get far too many mentions. Perhaps the biggest flaw, which I didn't notice so much in the first novel, was the ambiguity in the nature of the armour the characters wear in battle. We keep hearing how hi-tech and ultra strong it is, with loving descriptions of it fitting in place and functioning... and then an alien bites through someone's armour. Really? However, any attempt to be analytical about a book like this is too much like breaking (ultra-strong, carbon steel) butterflies on the wheel. It is the science fiction novel equivalent of a Tom Cruise movie. Far better to just go with the flow and enjoy the action, of which there is plenty, rather than expect too much logic. Szal is quite happy to put major characters at real risk of being killed off, which always adds to the excitement of the ride. I'm looking forward to the next instalment (even if I wish this wasn't forced on the reader by the ending).

  29. 5 out of 5

    BookishBenny

    Enjoy fantasy and sci-fi books but no-one to talk to? Come join The SFF Oasis, an amazing book discord! We have buddy reads, trilogy reads, live author Q&As, virtual badges to collect, Dungeons & Dragons, writer's cafe and much much more! It's completely free and very welcoming. If you'd like to talk about books with future friends you can join here: http://discord.gg/c2hXSP5MsX Firstly I would like to thank Will at Gollancz for providing me with a very early ARC. This is a sequel that I have bee Enjoy fantasy and sci-fi books but no-one to talk to? Come join The SFF Oasis, an amazing book discord! We have buddy reads, trilogy reads, live author Q&As, virtual badges to collect, Dungeons & Dragons, writer's cafe and much much more! It's completely free and very welcoming. If you'd like to talk about books with future friends you can join here: http://discord.gg/c2hXSP5MsX Firstly I would like to thank Will at Gollancz for providing me with a very early ARC. This is a sequel that I have been waiting to read for a while, ever since I finished Jeremy's debut novel, Stormblood (review here). Blindspace kicks us off where we left Vakov Fukasawa and it doesn't take long for us to be thrown into more space-faring action that Jeremy specialises in. 'That devil's streak of yours worries me, sometimes.' 'Oh, but you wouldn't have me any other way.' At the end of Stormblood we were introduced to a very powerful alien race called the Kaiji and in this story we get to see where they came from, what their fears are and what they can do. In fact this whole book is an elaboration of the adrenaline-infused groundwork Jeremy has laid in book one. Of course Vakov is back but he is a much more deeper character. There are times when I felt that Vakov had an emotional side to him, one that I thought was missing in book one so it is refreshing, and character building, to hear his personal thoughts about love, family and even fear. Grim returns for the ride along with some familiar faces and some completely new ones. 'Is this safe?' Quilan asked. 'Of course!' I rasped, panting. 'It's a battlefield, Quil. Safest place there.' The characters in this book are the main meat on the bone. They really make the story and it's their fears and wants that drive their actions. Being that this story (and Stormblood) are told in a first-person perspective, you can get the sense that you are getting really close to these characters. I liked the new characters but also found that old characters (and their relationship with Vakov) felt new and fresh as if Jeremy had almost re-designed them (he rewrote this book twice). 'Son of a bitch! You said you'd let me go!' The cultist shrieked as I disabled his helmet. 'And you were stupid enough to believe me,' I said. The action, and if you've read Stormblood this should go without saying, is awesome. The (gun)fights (should be called funfights!) are well written and give you a cool idea of how it is going down in a distant planet, spaceship or dirty hell hole. There is a huge payoff at the end of the book which has a Star Wars size battle and it was amazing! So many things going on but so well thought out and written, I literally couldn't stop reading. 'I'll kill you!' I heard myself roar. 'Let me out of this or I'll kill you. I'll kill you all!' Jeremy makes the reader grimace (again) as he treats poor Vakov like a piece of shit at times (purely for our enjoyment is what he'll base his defence on), putting him through terrible situations that quite frankly made me wince or pull that tense emoji people like to use. #awkward. The problem is that Jeremy does it so well, he knows that he is making you squirm, so he puts it into the book. I've come to expect (and dare I say love) this in his stories now, almost subconsciously challenging him to make me weep. 'thanks for the heads-up, love,' said Jasken. 'Did you want to show me what end the bullets come out of on the guns, in case I've forgotten that, too?' Jeremy has a really tender way of explaining things with his choice of words. His description of things going on in the world, from the point of Vakov, sometimes made me stop and think about it. I have a visceral example which I won't reveal because it is a minor spoiler but I think these descriptions, metaphors and similes grab your attention, which adds to the impact the setting/or action, in the book has at that moment. 'No leader ever promises his team they'll survive a battle,' I said, looking around at the others, speaking just loud enough to be heard above the roar. 'That's the rule. But screw the rules. We're going to go out, fight like hell and then we're coming back home, all of us.' The arc I received wasn't without a problem though. Aside from the various edits (it's an arc so to be expected), there were times where continuity seemed to be lost. This could be (for example) that a character is captured and then in the next chapter they have somehow escaped and are now causing problems again. Maybe this was me and I didn't remember it correctly or maybe it is something that has been changed from the arc copy I received. It wasn't enough to stop my enjoyment of this book though and shouldn't stop your enjoyment either. Rating 4.5/5 - Vakov is like The Punisher but in space with aliens, psychopaths, stormtech addicts and rail guns. This was one hell of a ride showing that Jeremy's writing skills have evolved from Stormblood into something even more serious. Blindspace is the kind of book you want to read when you want brutal, space-faring action with aliens, devious enemies, found family and high stakes. Be prepared to wince, grimace and turn the pages quickly when you pick this up. It's one hell of a ride. If you want to get a copy of either Blindspace or the first book, Stormblood, consider buying from The Broken Binding here - use the code BLURB5 for a discount on all purchases.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Clayton Suh

    Even better than the first book. Blindspace is packed with so much juicy action, world-building, cool character moments, and heart that you'll be sorry to turn the last page. Looking forward to the next one! Even better than the first book. Blindspace is packed with so much juicy action, world-building, cool character moments, and heart that you'll be sorry to turn the last page. Looking forward to the next one!

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