Cyclo, the first and largest biological ship of its kind, is dying. A small crew of mercenaries have handed over the rights to their life to document the death of the ship, but the abandoned ship is anything but abandoned—one girl has been left behind.
Hana has known nothing but the isolation of a single room and the secret that has kept her there for seventeen years. When she meets Fennec, the boy assigned to watch her, she realizes that there is a world she has yet to experience but she is doomed to never meet.
When crew members begin mysteriously dying, Hana and Fenn realize that they are racing against the death of the ship to find a way to survive—unless someone kills them even before Hana’s truly had a chance to live.
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Genre: YA Scifi
Release date: November 6th 2018
My heart is beating so fast I can barely stay standing. I have clawed my robe until it has holes in the edges.
It has been six hours now. I am absolutely forbidden to leave my room, a room that does not exist in the consciousness of any crew member except my mother, hidden as it is in the most unused part of Cyclo’s body, the northeast quadrant, alpha ring.
For the last two hours, I’ve raised my hand countless times, poised a few inches from the door, before dropping it. Even touching the door is strictly forbidden. But I can’t wait here for much longer. Where is Mother? Where could she be? I’d even read the last entry in her diary, looking to see if anything was off, but there was nothing but our last discussion on why hedgehogs are not related to sea urchins. My eyes are full of tears, and I’ve already cried several times out of sheer panic.
I keep my voice steady and say, “Cyclo. Please open the door.”
Cyclo, not bothering to speak because the message is too urgent, blanches with white that moves in waves over the door.
“Cyclo. Please open the door,” I say again, this time my voice cracking. I’ll only just peep my head outside, just a little look. I won’t step a foot out there. I know people will be walking the hallways. But if no one is there…maybe I can make my way to her lab and see why she’s delayed. I know exactly where it is. I’ve spent much of my life studying Cyclo’s every detail—the story of her birth, the way she harvests starlight energy, the layout of the ship down to every single storage vacuole and crew member unit.
Toxic reminds me of a cross between The 100 and Passengers. It's a survival story which belongs in the horror genre. It's also a romance read. It's fast-paced and written well. I'm not really a fan of horror and that's probably why I didn't like this more. For the right reader, you will love this, I'm just not that girl.
Hana is a secret. Her mother and the ship have kept her a secret for seventeen years. She lives in her mother's shop quarters and Cyclo (the ship's intelligence) attends to her needs. One day out of the blue her mother doesn't return home. Hana has never left her mother's ship quarters but eventually realises something isn't right. When Hana enters the main ship area she realises there is a lack of people. In fact, the whole crew are missing including her mother.
Fennec is part of a small data collecting crew. He is sent to retrieve the ship's log to find out what's gone wrong. His mission is an end of life situation. The ship is unstable and Fennecs reward is for his family if he succeeds.
Cyclo is dying. The crew have abandoned her. The days are numbered. Cyclo cares for Hana but she also has dark secrets, the deadly kind.
Hana and Fennec need to work out what's going wrong before it's too late. Fennec has been instructed to only collect data but Hana wants to know what's happened. There are a few twists to this story and it has a happy ever after for the two main characters.
3 stars out of 5. It's written well but not really for me.
Lydia Kang is an author of young adult fiction, poetry, and narrative non-fiction. She graduated from Columbia University and New York University School of Medicine, completing her residency and chief residency at Bellevue Hospital in New York City. She is a practicing physician who has gained a reputation for helping fellow writers achieve medical accuracy in fiction. Her poetry and non-fiction have been published in JAMA, The Annals of Internal Medicine, Canadian Medical Association Journal, Journal of General Internal Medicine, and Great Weather for Media. She believes in science and knocking on wood, and currently lives in Omaha with her husband and three children.
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