A copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Following the events of Avalon, Jeth Seagrave and his crew are on the run. Jeth is desperate to find the resources and funding he needs to rescue his mother from an ITA’s research lab and leave this whole galaxy behind for a new life somewhere else. But the ITA is just as desperate, and soon Jeth finds himself pursued by a mysterious figure hell-bent on capturing Jeth and his crew—dead or alive. In a last-ditch effort to save everyone he holds dear, Jeth enters into a bargain with the last person he ever thought he’d see again: Dax Shepherd, the galaxy’s newest and most fearsome crime lord. And he’s not the only one: upon arriving back at Peltraz spaceport for the first time since he witnessed the death of his old employer, Jeth discovers Dax has a new partner: Jeth’s mother, Marian.
This shocking turn of events is only the first in another breathless, action-packed sci-fi adventure rife with danger, love, and betrayal, as Jeth has to once again ask himself how much he’s willing to invest in a morally bankrupt galaxy in the hopes of saving those he cares for.
I read Avalon, the beginning of this dualogy, last year and found it to be an enjoyable read. It had a creepy atmosphere that I had hoped would span into this novel but did not. I thought that would disappoint me but I was nicely surprised. In Polaris Arnett really upped the tension and heartbreak for her main character Jeth.
There must be something wrong with me because I love for a main character to be pushed to the brink and be generally tortured emotionally. I felt that Arnett really put her characters through much more strife in this book than the first. I felt that Jeth, in particular, had a lot of emotional growth throughout the series and I really began to connect to him in this second book. So many horrible things were done to him and those he loved it was actually painful to read (which I loved). I wanted to see his world be turned inside out. I wanted to see his nightmares become reality–isn’t that awful of me? Arnett delivered and for me, it made this novel (and series in general) stronger.
One of my problems with the first book was my lack of emotional connection to the characters and their welfare. Thankfully I was able to connect to the cast of characters and began to find myself fearing for them. Even the secondary cast seemed better rounded and their interactions and dialog more fulfilling. The romance still fell a tad flat for me but since it was such a small part of the story it worked out.
As for the story itself, I enjoyed where Arnett took things and I really liked that we got to learn more about Marian (Jeth’s mother). The action felt consistent with the first novel and really these two books flowed very well together. I felt that the loose ends were tied up well and nothing was left unexplored.
I felt that Polaris took the series to a better place because I was able to find an emotional attachment to Jeth and the rest of the characters. I liked that Arnett went darker in this final book and still managed to bring things around and provide a good conclusion.