Book Review: Long Way to a Small Angry Planet (Wayfarers #1) by Becky Chambers

“death was nothing to fear. Why should they fear something that came to all life-forms?”


Follow a motley crew on an exciting journey through space-and one adventurous young explorer who discovers the meaning of family in the far reaches of the universe-in this light-hearted debut space opera from a rising sci-fi star.

Rosemary Harper doesn’t expect much when she joins the crew of the aging Wayfarer. While the patched-up ship has seen better days, it offers her a bed, a chance to explore the far-off corners of the galaxy, and most importantly, some distance from her past. An introspective young woman who learned early to keep to herself, she’s never met anyone remotely like the ship’s diverse crew, including Sissix, the exotic reptilian pilot, chatty engineers Kizzy and Jenks who keep the ship running, and Ashby, their noble captain.

Life aboard the Wayfarer is chaotic and crazy—exactly what Rosemary wants. It’s also about to get extremely dangerous when the crew is offered the job of a lifetime. Tunneling wormholes through space to a distant planet is definitely lucrative and will keep them comfortable for years. But risking her life wasn’t part of the plan. In the far reaches of deep space, the tiny Wayfarer crew will confront a host of unexpected mishaps and thrilling adventures that force them to depend on each other. To survive, Rosemary’s got to learn how to rely on this assortment of oddballs—an experience that teaches her about love and trust, and that having a family isn’t necessarily the worst thing in the universe.

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My Thoughts

I have known of Long Way to a Small Angry Planet for a hot minute, but like most of the books I hear about I did not investigate further. How foolish of me…What did I love? The characters, storytelling, and diversity presented in this novel. I disliked the lack of tension and drive towards a goal, but that did not distract me from loving every minute of this book. Long Way to a Small Angry Planet is a feel-good cozy science fiction novel.

Long Way to a Small Angry Planet was recommended to me by a fellow reader on twitter. If you are looking to begin reading science fiction, look no further than Long Way to a Small Angry Planet. Long Way to a Small Angry Planet is a refreshing take on everything I thought about science fiction novels. Instead of focusing on an evil alien, or a huge space war, Chambers crafts a world motivated by characters who feel real and relatable despite most being of different species. Long Way to a Small Angry Planet is told from a third person omniscient allowing the reader to shift seamlessly between characters, leaving you wanting a little more each time a shift happens. Each characters offer insight to the various stages of life and the struggles we face all while blasting wormholes in space.

Instead of rushing into a space battle, the crew stops on various planets to meet friends, shop, and stretch their legs. They face problems along the way, but no the in the stereotypical ways you might think. Chambers presents ethical issues we are still exploring today, such as one’s right-to-die, sexuality and love, identity, and firearms. There are so many more, but listing all would ruin the adventure for you.

While I loved every minute of this book, it is not for everyone. Long Way to a Small Angry Planet is a cozy science fiction read. It is not your typical science fiction book. If you need epic space battles, weapons, pew-pew sounds, complex military organizations, guts in darkness of space, etc., do not read Long Way to a Small Angry Planet. What makes this book such a great starting point for people like me, who are slightly intimidated by science fiction, is that alllll of those complex things are touched upon but not the focal point of this book.

“Ninety percent of all problems are caused by people being assholes.”
“What causes the other ten percent?” asked Kizzy.
“Natural disasters,” said Nib.”

Should you read Long Way to a Small Angry Planet?

YES! Do not wait any longer, grab a copy from your library, Amazon, or local book store as soon as possible. You can read Long Way to a Small Angry Planet for free with an Amazon Prime membership using the Prime Library.

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