Paradise 21 by Aubrie Dionne (A New Dawn #1)

Available: Amazon/ B&N

Type: Sci Fi/Romance

Publisher: Entangled Publishing

My Copy: Sent as part of tour

Aries has lived her entire life aboard mankind’s last hope, the New Dawn, a spaceship traveling toward a planet where mankind can begin anew- a planet that won’t be reached in Aries’ lifetime. As one of the last genetically desirable women in the universe,she must marry her designated genetic match and produce the next generation for this centuries long voyage.

But Aries has other plans.

When her desperate escape from the New Dawn strands her on a desert planet, Aries discovers rumors about pirates – humans who have escaped her before its demise – are true. Handsome, genetically imperfect Striker possess the freedom Aries’ envies, and the two connect on a level she never thought possible. But pursued by her match from above and hunted by the planet’s native inhabitants, Aries quickly learns freedom will come at a hefty price.

The life of the man she loves.

Paradise 21 was an intriguing story..even though it wasn’t something I normally would read. It’s no secret that sci-fi generally just is not my thing. I like watching it but somehow reading it loses me every time. Well almost every time. It is kinda hard to explain why I liked (and I use that loosely) this book because there were a multitude of things I disliked about it.

I enjoyed Striker. He was an interesting character from the get go. I loved his protectiveness, his ability to think under pressure and the intellect that he used to rebuild a fallen space craft with parts completely foreign to him. He acclimated to his environment when stranded on a strange desert planet quite well. I was surprised by how well he dealt with the appearance of Aries seeing as how he was stranded by his, for lack of a better word, girlfriend type person several years ago. I would have thought he’d be more prickly about seeing a woman but alas, nope, he warmed right up.

Aries was a harder sell to me. I got that she wanted out of her intended marriage. Yada yada, but in all honestly it just felt odd to me. She planned all these things and then ended up on a planet she knew nothing about…it just seemed a bit “woe is me” to me. I would think for someone who had planned so effectively that she would have done a bit more research into when she decided to exit the ship and what planets were nearby.

The planet Aries lands on was what really had me shaking my head. The place had giant sand worms…ala Beetlejuice and Tremors. I couldn’t get past them. I just kept thinking…really? The image…it just wasn’t what I wanted. I wanted something…I dunno…more.


Then there were the inhabitants of the desert planet they found themselves stranded on. The giant lizard men…ala Land Of The Lost. Envision Sleestacks. At this point in the book when these lizard guys showed up I almost lost it. I couldn’t take it seriously.


The whole story like felt like a mishmash of things I had already seen, already read. The plot itself was similar to Across the Universe which is a newer YA book I read awhile back. It too had a space ship that was heading to some paradise planet hundreds of years away. The people on board paired together to further the species until the ship landed…if that were even to happen. The idea of going outside those pairings was unheard of and yet one girl has decided to buck the system and look for escape or true love or to over turn the ship. That seems to be the gist in all the sci fi books like this. Some head honcho making all the decisions for the people while keeping secrets about the destination, the power supply, the food ranks…ect ect.

I thought the romance between Striker and Aries was only lukewarm. That could have been played up much more than it was. I didn’t really get their intense dedication with what we were given. More looks, more touching, something to further show the readers so we could understand the emotional connections better would have been great.

Secondary story lines were good and I hope we get to see a bit more of those as the series progresses. I’d like to know what happens to Strikers ex after the end of this book…and the boy she had taken under her wing as a pseudo mom. I also want to learn more about these aliens they hatched from the basement on their salvaged alien spacecraft. This ‘peaceful” race they saved. I have a hard time believing any race is 100% peaceful so I’m hoping that gets pursued a bit more in the future.

Paradise 21 is a sound book for sci fi lovers. Romance lovers might be disappointed by the lack of heat within the pages.

I give Paradise 21 by Aubrie Dionne 3 stars!


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