Lightless by C. A. Higgins


Riveting to the very end, real science fiction with lots of science. But the science doesn't boggle the mind, or dam up the story flow.

With that said, I have to say the ending falls flat. The author builds such a crescendo, and there's this little pop at the end instead of a huge BOOM. 

Character development is superb. I really understood all the characters and their motivations. Just a marvelous character-driven story. First, the author uses just two points of view, until an unexpected third character enters the story flow and drives the story in turbo gear. An amazing job. Every character is changed in some way by the events, or their motivations. That is classic storytelling at its best.

There is enough description given for the reader to build this ship-world in his or her imagination. That is superb story development. Your don't have to back track or reimagine something because the author slips in overmuch description after you've decided on the color of the walls and the carpet. It is just enough so you get the idea without bogging down the story flow with superfluous description. 

One other thing, though. The editor could have removed at least 5,000 - 7,000 words and made the writing much tighter and the story much more tension-filled. If only the ending was a bit different this would have been a whip-crack of a novel.


The deeply moving human drama of Gravity meets the nail-biting suspense of Alien in this riveting science fiction debut. With bold speculation informed by a degree in astrophysics, C. A. Higgins spins an unforgettable “locked spaceship” mystery guaranteed to catapult readers beyond their expectations—and into brilliantly thrilling new territory.

Serving aboard the Ananke, an experimental military spacecraft launched by the ruthless organization that rules Earth and its solar system, computer scientist Althea has established an intense emotional bond—not with any of her crewmates, but with the ship's electronic systems, which speak more deeply to her analytical mind than human feelings do. But when a pair of fugitive terrorists gain access to the Ananke, Althea must draw upon her heart and soul for the strength to defend her beloved ship.

While one of the saboteurs remains at large somewhere on board, his captured partner—the enigmatic Ivan—may prove to be more dangerous. The perversely fascinating criminal whose silver tongue is his most effective weapon has long evaded the authorities' most relentless surveillance—and kept the truth about his methods and motives well hidden.

As the ship's systems begin to malfunction and the claustrophobic atmosphere is increasingly poisoned by distrust and suspicion, it falls to Althea to penetrate the prisoner's layers of intrigue and deception before all is lost. But when the true nature of Ivan's mission is exposed, it will change Althea forever—if it doesn't kill her first.

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