Title: Signal to Noise
Author: Talya Andor
Publisher: Less Than Three Press
Characters: Sebastian (Bastian) and Theodor (Theo) Kautzer
POV: Third Person
Sub-Genre: Science Fiction, Dystopian
Kisses: 4.5 Kisses
It’s been three years since the Incursion; three long years since Bastian and his twin brother Theo became the sole survivors on the planet Noise. Their distress calls have gone unanswered, and they are running out of supplies. They have no one but each other. And when the long-awaited rescue finally arrives, it brings with it complications that make being alone and forgotten look easy.
Firstly, this is a twincest story, so if that’s not your thing, stop now. Secondly, although the boys are only sixteen, they are legally considered adults. Rather than a romance, “Signal to Noise” is more of an adventure story, although there is a relationship between the twins that contains sex.
The twins are the only survivors on Noise, a planet that was once home to over six hundred humans and many more animals. The only other creatures on the planet are the “Invaders”, the alien species that wiped out the settlement and continues to attack their safe base. It has been three years since the invasion and, from what they can find on the galactic net, Noise was only one of the first planets taken in a war that, after three years, shows no sign of stopping.
Noise is a barely habitable planet only settled for the fuel that could be mined there. In the three years since the invasion, the human worlds have been rapidly depleting their stores of the rare mineral in their fight against the aliens, and so a “rescue” mission is sent to rescue any survivors, evaluate the readiness of the mine, and hopefully bring some of the fuel back. Survivors are not expected, which throws a few wrenches in the works.
I really like the boys and the way their story develops. The characters are all realistic, fully formed, and the scenarios extremely likely. But I’m afraid my favourite was actually Lieutenant Daniel Bane, the commander of the elite team of FPO special forces sent for the “rescue mission”. A few of the scenes are from his POV, and his cynical understanding of human politics and business really helps to add dimension that you wouldn’t get if the story were only told from the twins’ POV.
I think the best thing about “Signal to Noise” was the way the author managed to give the story a hopeless, depressed, dystopian feel even as Bastian and Theo have a chance of being rescued. Due to this atmosphere, I probably won’t be reading the story again in a hurry, because I tend to read for the hopeful, positive feeling. You will likely find it on my ereader though.
“Signal to Noise” would be best enjoyed by dystopian lovers. Classic science fiction fans should also take a look.
The only other book I’ve read by this author is “Body Option”, which is staying on my ereader, but I am considering the sequel to “Signal to Noise” which will be coming out soon.
Reviewed by Alison