Unity

Unity Book Cover Unity
Jeremy Robinson
Young Adult
Breakneck Media
July 26, 2016
Hardcover
430

Euphemia Williams, known to her few friends as Effie, and everyone else as Eff-Bomb, will punch you for looking at her funny, for using her full name or for noticing that she’s a genius. But when an elite global entity known as Unity takes note of her intelligence and offers her a chance to escape the hum-drum life of a foster-child, she signs up. At best, she expects her time abroad to be a vacation. At worst, an actual challenge. But what she finds, upon being swept up in a futuristic transport, is far, far worse.

En route to a secret location in the Pacific, a meteor punches through the atmosphere triggering an electromagnetic pulse that sends the transport plummeting to the ocean. While fighting to escape the crash and climb onto an island beach, the meteor slams into the sea. A tsunami races across the island, pursuing Effie and her fellow survivors deeper into the volcanic island’s lush jungle.

Beaten, terrified and abandoned, the small group discovers that they are not alone on the island. The locals are ruthless and well-trained. With the survivors looking to her for leadership, Effie struggles—and fails—to keep everyone alive as they fight for survival.

Along the way, Effie uncovers a series of shocking truths: the parents she never knew were part of the island’s strange history, which includes massive robots known as Shugoten, and the meteor that sent them careening into the ocean, wasn’t a meteor at all.

The daikaiju have arrived—and one of them is headed her way.

Jeremy Robinson, creator of the ‘Kaiju Thriller’ genre, and international bestselling author of the Project Nemesis novel and comic book series, launches this new series combining the behind-enemy-lines themes of Red Dawn with the high-tech monster-fighting robots of Robotech, infusing it with his frenetic pacing and character driven plots.

 

Unity is one of author Jeremy Robinson’s first “new” books. For those who are new to his work, most of his previous books take place in a multi-verse (think Marvel comics or Stephen King’s works) and they were all more or less wrapped up in one last adventure in Project Legion. So, Unity kicks things off fresh-ish (more on the “-ish” later). Going in to Unity, I was unaware that it was a YA book and that did throw me a little. Robinson’s previous kaiju books, the Nemesis saga, were not YA oriented so the same was expected here. In no way did that diminish Unity, it was just one of those “oh, okay” moments.

Being a YA book centered around a kickass girl, Unity cannot help but make my brain go to Hunger Games. Effie was fantastic as a central protagonist. She has something of a bad attitude and life has not been easy on her, but at the core of things she is a good person. Her friends manage to remain interesting throughout as the team is built up over the story. The villains are also interesting, though suffering from a bit of generic bad guy syndrome.

This book (and probably it’s sequels) do differ from the Nemesis Saga in one major way, the robots. Nemesis focused mostly on the monsters, not introducing a giant mecha until the 4th book (out of five). In this story, there are no good/allied monsters. All the monsters are the bad guys. This time around humanity uses giant robots to fight back (think Pacific Rim). I say this time around because the characters do mention Nemesis at one point. In the same breath they also name a few fictional kaiju, so it is a little unclear whether this is at some point in the future after the Nemesis Saga or if the character speaking that line just read the Nemesis book. Maybe that will be touched on a bit more in a sequel.

Nothing that Robinson does in Unity can really be described as new. Most of it was already done in his previous books. Giant monsters, giant robots, teenagers saving the world…come to think of it, this was basically the Nemesis saga mixed with Power Rangers. Do not get the wrong impression; Unity is not a knock-off of Power Rangers, Voltron, Ultraman, etc. Jeremy Robinson is certainly recycling old plot elements, but he is using them to make something new. Something new and entertaining. Even though the ideas here are standing on the shoulders of giants, it is still very much Robinson’s own thing.

February 4, 2018

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