Review: Sleeping Giants by Sylvain Neuvel

Sleeping Giants by Sylvain Neuvel

Sleeping Giants was an amazing audiobook. The whole book is written as a case file, so it’s interviews and journal entries performed by a full cast audio (Audible version). It took about an hour for me to understand what exactly was happening in the story, but then I was hooked. Pieces of a giant metal robot have been found on Earth, and they’re suspected to be the remains of aliens on Earth thousands (or maybe millions) of years ago. The main players in the story are the lead scientist, a mathematician, and a couple of military pilots. And the un-named interviewer. It’s so interesting!

I don’t read a lot of science fiction, but this book was amazing. It was more focused on how humans would act in the face of the known existence of aliens instead of being a sci-fi alien story. I like to call this type of science fiction “near science fiction,” meaning that it could happen right now today. It’s not focused on a futuristic world or space travel. It’s similar to The Martian or Dark Matter where it takes present day society and then introduces a sci-fi element to it.

My favorite character in this book was Kara, one of the pilots. She’s spunky and disrespectful of authority. She does what she wants and she mouths off. The actress who played her was perfect. She reminded me of Julia Styles in all of her mid-90s movies (think 10 Things I Hate About You). I got a kick out of listening to her, and I was routing for her the whole way.

I read this book back in March right before the sequel was released, so it was perfect timing. I didn’t have to wait long to learn what happened next. Even still, there isn’t a huge cliffhanger at the end, so if you don’t get to the sequel right away, it’s not too terrible. Mostly, I just wanted more of the characters once I finished this book, and I was happy that I got that right away.

Rating: 4 Stars

Sleeping Giants
Themis Files #1
Sylvain Neuvel
Random House Audio
April 26, 2016

A girl named Rose is riding her new bike near her home in Deadwood, South Dakota, when she falls through the earth. She wakes up at the bottom of a square hole, its walls glowing with intricate carvings. But the firemen who come to save her peer down upon something even stranger: a little girl in the palm of a giant metal hand.

Seventeen years later, the mystery of the bizarre artifact remains unsolved—its origins, architects, and purpose unknown. Its carbon dating defies belief; military reports are redacted; theories are floated, then rejected.

But some can never stop searching for answers.

Rose Franklin is now a highly trained physicist leading a top secret team to crack the hand’s code. And along with her colleagues, she is being interviewed by a nameless interrogator whose power and purview are as enigmatic as the provenance of the relic. What’s clear is that Rose and her compatriots are on the edge of unraveling history’s most perplexing discovery—and figuring out what it portends for humanity. But once the pieces of the puzzle are in place, will the result prove to be an instrument of lasting peace or a weapon of mass destruction?

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