We’re back with book two in the Mal Thomas series!
Thanks to Smith Publicity for the advanced copy in exchange for our honest reviews.
VALLEY OF TIME by Jeremy D. Holden (released November 5th, 2017)
Here are the thoughts from the #allthebookreviews duo!
Chandra’s Thoughts: 3/5 stars
Mal is back and this he’s being asked to promote space travel with the possibility meeting life elsewhere. We are basically taken in the same direction as Mal was taken in the first book, Sea Doubt. The first part the book is basically the same. We meet the main characters again, he’s approached the same way again and we live in a sense deja vu if you’ve read the first in this series. I do much prefer this premise space travel and extraterrestrials much better than the premise the first book with the second coming the Messiah.
Once again, we get to see how Mal uses his expert advertising skills to convince people to want to come on this exploration. As we near closer and closer every day to the possibility living on another planet, those in the elite money bracket will be afforded the opportunity to potentially do so! If you believe that there is life outside Earth, then why wouldn’t you want to be the FIRST to meet and/or observe them? Quite interesting and definitely had my interest.
What I love the most about these characters is Mal’s relationship with his wife. The author expresses beautifully how much in love they are after decades marriage and how much Mal admires and listens to his wife’s opinion and how she supports him, even when she doesn’t agree with him. Love! And based on the author’s notes at the end the book, you can see that he feel the same about his wife. So adorable!
It’s hard not to compare this book to the first one – especially with reading them back to back. Also since the beginnings both books are extremely similar. This we don’t have the huge, out left field twist and instead get a more interesting and easier read. I think you could also read this as a stand alone though there are some references to book one that might not be crystal clear if you haven’t read the first. Overall still the very intriguing concept of using social media to sell something outrageous to the world.
My Thoughts: 3.5/5 stars
Mal Thomas is back in a new advertising challenge. Unlike SEA OF DOUBT, Mal must promote space travel and the great possibility of encountering life outside of Earth. VALLEY OF TIME is another book that will make you question your beliefs and truly wonder, what would happen if we made our first contact?
Mal is contacted by Huw Hudson, who is said to be the modern-day Howard Hughes, about advertising for his company, Space Rider, and wants to be known as the top company in space tourism. Interesting concept.
Huw has one twist for Mal and his team – he has alleged evidence extraterrestrial life but he thinks it could hurt his business. So he wants Mal to investigate and keep the news story under wraps. His researching takes him across the globe and must keep this extraordinary secret to himself and away from the FBI and his close friends. What he finds out will have him questioning all that he believes when it comes to space and time.
It’s rare that I read books in a series back to back. Usually I have a book or two in between (or I’m anxiously waiting for the next one to release), so it was very different reading SEA OF DOUBT and VALLEY OF TIME so close together. The openings both books are very similar to each other – which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it definitely felt familiar as you begin the next journey. Once again, some great character development and focus – Holden captures the relationship between Mal and his wife perfectly. The support between the two and their dynamic felt very genuine (I recommend reading the author’s notes at the end!).
What I enjoyed better about this book was the subject. Aliens and space travel keep my interest better than the potential the second coming the Messiah – but that’s just me! This did have a good pace to it and kept my interest. I’d say this could be read as standalone, but it does have a couple references to book one. Like I mentioned about book one, it will always amaze me how authors can intertwine the use social media in their stories – it’s so prevalent in today’s society.
Overall, I liked this concept better than SEA DOUBT, but I would highly recommend both books in the series if you want a unique story. It keeps a steady pace and will have you thinking about it long after.
Did you read book one?