Review: Penumbra by Keri Arthur

penumbraReviewed by Jen

Why in the name of all that is holy would a publisher re-release a book series that has no ending?  It wasn’t until after I read Memory Zero that I realized these books had been previously published. That wasn’t a problem for me, but when I started reading other reviews, I found out that Keri Arthur had abandoned the series after book 3.  Surely, it wouldn’t be left unresolved… would it?  Yes. It would.  I reached out to the author on Twitter and asked if what I heard was true. She told me she wrote a new Epilogue for the end of Penumbra to tie up loose ends. This was enough to give me some hope for a resolution.  It shouldn’t have.

I feel like I should be talking about all the good things about this book and this series. I did, in fact, quite like it. But the sad truth is, how could anyone want to invest in these stories and these characters when you are left with no resolution to the main story arc?  It’s a slap in the face, that’s what it is.  And obviously, it has left me quite irritated.

If you are one of the people who cares only about the journey and not the destination, it’s a good book. I would have called it at least a B-read, did I not know that there would be no more story behind it.  It picks up right behind Generation 18, with Sam trying to get herself out of her partnership with Gabriel. She goes undercover, to protect a clone while actually spying on his movements.  We uncover more about her history, about who and what she is.  We find out who Joshua is… who Joe is… why she is being targeted and how she is linked to Penumbra.  It’s filled with action and revelations.  It finally moves us forward on a relationship between Gabriel and Sam. It sets up the big showdown with the enemy. And then it ends.  It’s essentially the perfect penultimate book in a series.  Only it’s not the penultimate book. It’s the end.

The Epilogue helps solidify what I guess would have been a somewhat questionable future between Gabriel and Sam. But it does nothing for the bigger picture.  I guess it is so galling because the series is really pretty engaging. I liked it. I want to find out what happens.  And I. Never. Will.

Why would you introduce an entirely new audience to this kind of frustration? For shame.

Click to purchase: Amazon

*ARC Provided by Random House

by Keri Arthur
Re-Release Date: October 28, 2014
Publisher: Dell


  1. >Why would you introduce an entirely new audience to this kind of frustration? For shame.

    I’m sorry to have disappointed you, but sometimes authors have little say in whether their books are re-released. The new publisher did ask if I was willing to write the last book, but I can’t. I’m contracted to write too many other books and it’s been too long since I’ve been in that world. I’d rather leave it where it is than make a total hash of it (which is possible, given all the notes I had about the last book are who knows where)

    Again, I apologize.

    • Jen at Red Hot Books says:

      Thank you for your thoughtful response. It must be frustrating for you to see a review like this when it is out of your hands and still carries your name. Perhaps it would not be so galling as a reader if I had not become so invested in the story. Sadly, I did make that emotional connection and I feel a bit cheated. I know I would not have started the series if I truly understood how it was left.

      Again, I do appreciate the insight and hopefully, so will others who read what you have to say.

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