Black Hole Sun

Black Hole Sun

3.7 205
by David Macinnis Gill
     
 

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Durango is playing the cards he was dealt. And it’s not a good hand.

He’s lost his family.

He’s lost his crew.

And he’s got the scars to prove it.

You don’t want to mess with Durango.

Overview

Durango is playing the cards he was dealt. And it’s not a good hand.

He’s lost his family.

He’s lost his crew.

And he’s got the scars to prove it.

You don’t want to mess with Durango.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Gill (Soul Enchilada) shifts literary gears, delivering an exciting and brutal science fiction tale about teenage mercenaries on Mars. Durango is a disgraced Regulator who, roninlike, did not kill himself when his previous master (his father) was arrested. Along with his gorgeous second, Vienne, and the snarky AI of his former commander, Mimi, which has been “flash-cloned” to his brain, he now takes jobs that most other Regulators would refuse, using the money to try to make his father’s life in prison more bearable. When they get called to protect a group of miners from the cannibalistic monstrosities called Dræu, they discover secrets that could cast new light on the entire history of Mars, as well Durango’s own past. Gill fills his story with well-crafted action sequences and witty dialogue, and the fast pace more than makes up for the predictability of the plot. Everything from the inevitable betrayals and the heroic sacrifices to the dark secrets is by the numbers, though the character development, banter between Durango and Mimi, and solid action will entertain most readers. Ages 14–up. (Sept.)
Booklist
"Readers will have a hard time turning the pages fast enough as the body count rises to the climactic, satisfying ending, which will leave new fans hopeful for more adventures."
The Horn Book
“Delightfully wacky.”
Suzanne Collins
School Library Journal Best Book“Rockets readers to new frontiers . . . action-packed.”
Chris Crutcher
“Great story, great characters, and nonstop action. David Gill takes you to a rugged, fast, tough world.”
Laurie Halse Anderson
“Black Hole Sun grabbed me by the throat and didn’t let go until the last page. In the best tradition of Heinlein and Firefly, Black Hole Sun is for readers who like their books fast-paced, intense, and relentless. Buy it, read it, pass it on!”
Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books
“Action, adventure, sci-fi, and horror buffs will all find this an almost perfect mix of all of the genres, and the addition of a soupçon of romance and hints of painful family drama results in a book that’s got appeal to just about any potential speculative-fiction fan.”
Booklist (starred review)
“Readers will have a hard time turning the pages fast enough as the body count rises to the climactic, satisfying ending, which will leave new fans hopeful for more adventures.”
Voice of Youth Advocates (VOYA)
“Fast-paced, compulsively readable, and outright funny.”
Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
"Action, adventure, sci-fi, and horror buffs will all find this an almost perfect mix of all of the genres, and the addition of a soupçon of romance and hints of painful family drama results in a book that’s got appeal to just about any potential speculative-fiction fan."
Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books
“Action, adventure, sci-fi, and horror buffs will all find this an almost perfect mix of all of the genres, and the addition of a soupçon of romance and hints of painful family drama results in a book that’s got appeal to just about any potential speculative-fiction fan.”
The Bulletin for the Center for Children's Books
“Action, adventure, sci-fi, and horror buffs will all find this an almost perfect mix of all of the genres, and the addition of a soupçon of romance and hints of painful family drama results in a book that’s got appeal to just about any potential speculative-fiction fan.”
VOYA - Bethany Martin
Mars has been colonized by humans, but the new world they have created is far from idyllic. The original government the colonists set up has collapsed, water is scarce, and kidnappings are rampant. In the void of law and order, bands of mercenaries can be hired to protect and serve those with money. Living by an outdated code of chivalry, Durango, a teen with a past, leads a group of these mercenaries on a mission to protect an outpost of miners from the Draeu—mysterious, savage creatures intent on destroying the miners and stealing their precious resources. Gill has crafted a fast-paced, compulsively readable, and outright funny story with plot twists that will keep readers guessing to the end. The dark themes and setting of the book are balanced by the screwball cast of characters assembled to protect the miners. Durango himself is a complex and relatable teen character. Dealing with the weight of his family's past, Martian society's rigid class structure, and a love triangle, Durango is by turns sullen, bold, and clueless. Some plot elements, like the former government's human experimentation program, are not fully fleshed out, and others are overblown, but with witty, sarcastic dialogue and nonstop action, Black Hole Sun will find plenty of eager readers. Give it to fans of other misfit-saves-the-world stories, like Rick Yancy's The Extraordinary Adventures of Alfred Kropp (Bloomsbury Children's Books, 2005/VOYA October 2005) or Jay Amory's The Fledgling of Az Gabrielson (Gollancz, 2006/VOYA October 2008); they will not be disappointed. Reviewer: Bethany Martin
Library Journal - BookSmack!
In the near to far future, humankind has decamped to Mars. Teenaged Durango was once a favorite son, destined to rule the planet, but now he is the fallen leader of a ragtag band of mercenaries. A desperate colony of miners hires Durango and his team to fight the Dræu, a gruesome band of cannibals. The Dræu's wicked queen and Durango have a past and the miners have a secret, raising the stakes of the inevitable battle between the two forces. In last year's Soul Enchilada, Gill had great fun with the beasties terrorizing his heroes. Here the Dræu approach their condition with such bloodthirsty delight that it is difficult to decide whether to giggle or close the book in disgust when they tear into a fresh victim. With this grisly foray into sf, Gill further proves his ability to create a gritty setting and people it with engagingly flawed heroes. Angelina Benedetti, "13 Going on 30", Booksmack! 10/21/10
School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up—In this high-energy dystopian novel set on Mars, 16-year-old Durango and his crew of Regulators have been hired to protect a group of miners and their children from the cannibalistic Draeu, who are led by an evil, enigmatic queen in search of the miners' reputed treasure. The Regulators are vastly outnumbered, and this might be their last mission unless quick-witted Durango and his feisty lieutenant, Vienne, can come up with a plan. The spirited, sarcastic dialogue between them masks their growing feelings for each other, though there's no time to explore romance with the high-octane action going on around them. The story is more violent than many YA science-fiction novels; there's scarcely a moment between flying shrapnel, explosions, and bloody fistfights. The occasional lack of exposition on the unfamiliar Martian technology may stump some readers, but that tiny flaw is easily overcome by the appealing characters, sharp dialogue, and action-packed plot. Durango's tendency toward acting first and thinking later is tempered by his former chief, Mimi, now a symbiotic nano-implant in Durango's brain, who offers equal parts hilarious sarcasm and logical advice sprinkled with quotes from classical poetry and 20th-century pop culture. Science-fiction fans will cheer Durango on in his exploits and enjoy the twists in the novel's satisfying conclusion. Those clamoring for more of Durango, Vienne, and Mimi will find their hopes for a sequel bolstered when the trio set off at the novel's end for a mysterious outpost that seems perfect for another adventure.—Leah J. Sparks, formerly at Bowie Public Library, MD
Kirkus Reviews
Intrepid teen regulator Jake Durango leads a daring pack of fearless freedom fighters in a dystopian future where humans rage against ferocious, porcine creatures called Drau, who prey upon human flesh. Based on Mars, Jake and his crew are hired to protect a colony of human miners from the Drau and their evil queen. Throw in a forbidden love triangle, an extensive underground cave system, a smart-alecky, trigger-happy Buckaroo Banzai–like soldier and plenty of blood and guts, and Gill scores a fast and funny science-fiction novel with plenty of surprises. The author injects many of the elements from his unforgettable first novel (Soul Enchilada, 2009) into this new work, including bizarro plot twists, kooky oddball characters and plenty of laugh-out-loud humor. His energetic sense of pacing keeps the pages turning even when the most ridiculous episode seems to be getting steroid injections. Despite the insanity, the plot races onward seamlessly, and well-rounded characters and sharp, contemporary dialogue keep the work grounded. Fans of science fiction and the strange will eat this up. (Science fiction. 12 & up)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780061998331
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
08/24/2010
Series:
Black Hole Sun , #1
Sold by:
HARPERCOLLINS
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
368
Sales rank:
499,547
File size:
733 KB
Age Range:
14 - 17 Years

What People are saying about this

Laurie Halse Anderson
“Black Hole Sun grabbed me by the throat and didn’t let go until the last page. In the best tradition of Heinlein and Firefly, Black Hole Sun is for readers who like their books fast-paced, intense, and relentless. Buy it, read it, pass it on!”
Chris Crutcher
“Great story, great characters, and nonstop action. David Gill takes you to a rugged, fast, tough world.”
Suzanne Collins
School Library Journal Best Book“Rockets readers to new frontiers . . . action-packed.”

Meet the Author

David Macinnis Gill lives with his family in Wilmington, North Carolina. He is the author of Black Hole Sun, Invisible Sun, and Shadow on the Sun, as well as Soul Enchilada.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

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Black Hole Sun 3.7 out of 5 based on 2 ratings. 205 reviews.
Ian Nielsen More than 1 year ago
This was a great read. Anyone who likes action or sci-fi will love this book. It takes place on Mars with the main character Jacob Durango. He is a regulator on Mars. A regulator is a person who is privately hired to complete a job because there is no military on Mars. Read the book to find what happens!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book captured the depths of my imagination. It opens up a whole new world of imagination. The book is set in the future, where humans have colonized Mars. And follows the actions of a well portrayed character named Durango. The book however has a sort of sudden end. Leaving readers asking questions and awaiting a possible sequel.
Derricomonico More than 1 year ago
I am a huge Science Fiction fan and Black Hole Sun definitely brings what I enjoy but its weakest area seems to be the characters. I'm not saying that they are developed well but I find myself having a hard time truly caring for them and hoping they succeed. In all, it is a very entertaining story and I would easily read more by David Macinnis Gill.
KimmyToney More than 1 year ago
I read this book for the Georgia Peach Award. It was very fast-paced and held my attention. I liked the characters a lot. The fight scenes and battles were good, too.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Thank you for a fun book. It's great to read a book with less crude language. The descriptions are excellent. I love the dialogue. Interesting concepts. Creative. I admire an author who can clean up the characters' comments ("no farging way") and convey the idea. It's even edited well.
Andrea Murdock More than 1 year ago
The characters are one-dimensional and cookie-cutter. I picked it up in the library and practically slept through it. Although I can see it's potential appeal, it really didn't do it for me.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Does this sound like something to bring to the airport? Certainly! Light, easy reading that I can put away until the return flight and not miss anything. Yeah, that's what my Nook gets used for!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Not usually a fan of sci fi but this was a good entertaining book!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I got this Friday as a freebie and finished it Saturday am. So you can tell I enjoyed the book. An easy but entertaining read and I'm looking forward to the next in the series. I didn't give it all stars due to the typos. Spell check and grammar check should be everyone's friend. I've just recently discovered the world of young adult science fiction and am finding it very enjoyable. (Wish they'd had such a good selection when I was a kid! I'm now 61 and still hooked on sci-fi.)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Terrific read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great world, great characters, on to book 2!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Excellent sci-fi novel with a lot of twists and turns in the plot. The main characters are quite dry and occasionally not engaging; however the two main characters are dynamic and interesting. This is the story of a man forsaken by his society who is dominated by his belief in his training and the rules instilled by his people.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am so happy that I decided to get this book against my initial hesitation seeing I normally don't venture into the sci-fi genre very often, but I am so happy I did! While there were a few editing mistakes, it was nothing I couldn't overlook and I was pleasantly surprised at how easily the story flowed. I will be sure to share it with my husband and am grateful for the books that the authors and B&N give us each week for free. So many people dedicate so much of their time for our enjoyment and I could only hope that people could show kindness towards those who give us their livelyhood, passion, lifelong dreams and many sleepless nights for free! While it maynot be your desired genre of reading  for the week at first glance, you might be pleasantly surprised if you just try broadening your horizons instead of hurting the person who has given their work so generously for FREE! When is the last time YOU worked for months or years ror
MrsMalvern14 More than 1 year ago
Fun and Imaginative I picked this up as a Free Friday Book and finished it the same day. While it had a few more battle scenes  than I could appreciate, I found the descriptions and language to be excellent. I even shelled out $10.00 for  the next book in the series. A great spring break read!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love a book that has teen males excited and enjoying reading
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book reminded me a bit of the Firefly universe without being derivitive. It was an entertaining and interesting read. For those that like to know: No sex, no swearing (in English). I will probably buy the next book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this book. It was an action packed adventure. It reminded me of Star Wars and Indiana Jones. Now I am 53 so maybe not quite a senior citizen but I found the story and characters fun. I don't understand why people look down at YA novels when they are treasures with less violence and sex. As well, I used to teach English to teenagers. So I can tell a good book from a bad one. This is a good one. Read it before you judge it.
mcclintock74450 More than 1 year ago
I just finished this exceptional book, I couldn't put it down!  If you like sci-fi and/or action this book is a must read.  I am planning on getting the rest of the series and finish the set.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved this book. Great read. Great sci-fi book. Look forward to reading the pre-quel and second book. Will recomend this to my friends and family. Oh, and yes, I' m nowhere the YA or AARP ages!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Derivative and uninteresting, I don't know how I managed to finish this book other than a masochistic desire to see what else the author could screw up. Taking plot points directly from Seven Samurai and the Firefly universe's Serenity- just to name the few most obvious ones that I can recall weeks later- the only thing that's a surprise here is how it has managed to get such high reviews. The characters are flat and development is virtually nonexistent. The story follows a course that is so predictable as to be painfully dull. And there are elements that are randomly wedged in that are little more than a pitiful method of artificially generating conflict between the main character and his love interest- "religious" views taken from various cultures that are only barely relevant in the context of needing to give her a reason to be angry with him. The only thing that prevented me from throwing this book at the wall on several occasions was the fact that I was reading it on my NOOK, which I value too much to be flinging about with the violence that this poor excuse for literature deserves.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Gill drops us right into the story--and his improbable characters--with a ten kilometer free fall over Mars and the pace (and improbability) never slackens. The back story--and a third of the story is back story--is rationed to the reader meagerly, which is good. A data dump at the beginning would have been a complete turn off. The characters are more caricatures, except for the bad guys. The mutants and their queen are as mysterious as they are evil. Only in the last pages does Gill fill us in. Well done. Yes, he manages to bring this story to a close, but it all seems too much like a set up for the next book in the series. Cover Art: more appropriate for a harlequin romance than a space opera.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Action packed story it could be turned into a cool movie
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This isn't my "normal" genre but it was free. I liked it. The story was interesting. I might look into other stories in sci fi. Thank you to those who actually read and reviewed the book. Your reviews helped me decided to read this book. Yes it was free, so there was no risk but your time is apreciated. I had to sort through alot of "free fri" complaints though.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago