A dying universe. A search for answers. A past unraveled.
Welcome to one of the April 2nd stops on the blog tour for The Last Gifts of the Universe by Rory August with Escapist Book Tours (#EscapistBookTours | Twitter | Instagram.) Look for others participating in this tour for more great content, and don’t forget to enter the giveaway! More on that at the end of this post.
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About the Book
The Last Gifts of the Universe
by Rory August
Publishing 7 April 2022
Genre: Science Fiction
Page Count: 212
Add it to your Goodreads TBR!
A dying universe.
When the Home worlds finally achieved the technology to venture out into the stars, they found a graveyard of dead civilizations, a sea of lifeless gray planets and their ruins. What befell them is unknown. All Home knows is that they are the last civilization left in the universe, and whatever came for the others will come for them next.
A search for answers.
Scout is an Archivist tasked with scouring the dead worlds of the cosmos for their last gifts: interesting technology, cultural rituals—anything left behind that might be useful to the Home worlds and their survival. During an excavation on a lifeless planet, Scout unearths something unbelievable: a surviving message from an alien who witnessed the world-ending entity thousands of years ago.
A past unravelled.
Blyreena was once a friend, a soul mate, and a respected leader of her people, the Stelhari. At the end of her world, she was the last one left. She survived to give one last message, one final hope to the future: instructions on how to save the universe.
An adventure at the end of a trillion lifetimes.
With the fate of everything at stake, Scout must overcome the dangers of the Stelhari’s ruined civilization while following Blyreena’s leads to collect its artifacts. If Scout can’t deliver these groundbreaking discoveries back to the Archivists, Home might not only be the last civilization to exist, but the last to finally fall.
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My Rating: 4 Stars
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I was granted complimentary access to The Last Gifts of the Universe by Rory August as part of my participation in a blog tour for this title with Escapist Book Tours. Thank you to all involved in affording me this opportunity! My thoughts are my own and my review is honest.
First, let’s appreciate the cat! Ladies and gentlemen, we’ve got an SFF book with a prominent cat that’s just a cat! It doesn’t speak, it behaves like an average house cat, and its owners say very typical cat owner things like “aww, big stretch!” I love it! I love my talking SFF cats too, but I love this!
Next we’ve got a character who’s probably a little too relatable to the average Millennial reader, and that’s a good thing. A young adult who did everything right. Went to the right school, studied the right program, got the right grades, applied to the right jobs, all for nothing. They’re stuck. Everyone else seems to have had better luck landing the dream job, moving to the dream location, etc., and now the very last people and creature comforts this character has left are trickling away in search of better things, too. Does anyone else hear the Friends theme song playing?
The Last Gifts of the Universe is one of those surviving the universe sort of small-cast adventures that piles tragedy and challenge on top of tragedy and challenge until the surviving characters find the motivation and opportunity to go chase something better and let their loved ones do the same. It’s not all sunshine and roses. It has a bittersweet and complicated conclusion that has an equally “too real” feeling as the middle of the plot. It’s a good thing the author was careful to weave in a lot of humour, because otherwise this book would be quite depressing, and I think that’s a sign of a job very well done. This book completely captures the experience of coming into adulthood, facing the truth that you’re not particularly special, and learning to take responsibility for shaping your own future.
About the Author
Rory August is a speculative fiction writer, animal lover, nature walker, and all around nerd. When they aren’t writing stories about lonely voyages through space, you can find them playing video games, the guitar, or a myriad of TTRPGs. They live in woodsy New England with their cat and husband. The Last Gifts of the Universe is their debut novel.
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Prize: An eBook or Paperback Copy of The Last Gifts of the Universe
Starts: March 28th, 2022 at 12:00am EST
Ends: April 3rd, 2022 at 11:59pm EST
Disclaimer: As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.
Comments on “The Last Gifts of the Universe by Rory August – 4* Review”
This sounds like a great book that I would really enjoy. There’s something about those “too real” characters and storylines that never fail to draw me in and capture my attention. I’m going to have to check this one out.