[Review] Zodiac by Romina Russell

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Title: Zodiac
Author: Romina Russell
Publisher: Razorbill
Publication Date: December 9, 2014

At the dawn of time, there were 13 Houses in the Zodiac Galaxy. Now only 12 remain….

Rhoma Grace is a 16-year-old student from House Cancer with an unusual way of reading the stars. While her classmates use measurements to make accurate astrological predictions, Rho can’t solve for ‘x’ to save her life—so instead, she looks up at the night sky and makes up stories.

When a violent blast strikes the moons of Cancer, sending its ocean planet off-kilter and killing thousands of citizens—including its beloved Guardian—Rho is more surprised than anyone when she is named the House’s new leader. But, a true Cancerian who loves her home fiercely and will protect her people no matter what, Rho accepts.

Then, when more Houses fall victim to freak weather catastrophes, Rho starts seeing a pattern in the stars. She suspects Ophiuchus—the exiled 13th Guardian of Zodiac legend—has returned to exact his revenge across the Galaxy. Now Rho—along with Hysan Dax, a young envoy from House Libra, and Mathias, her guide and a member of her Royal Guard—must travel through the Zodiac to warn the other Guardians.

But who will believe anything this young novice says? Whom can Rho trust in a universe defined by differences? And how can she convince twelve worlds to unite as one Zodiac?divider_line (1)
Review: When I bought this book I was fawning over the cover because it was all rainbowy and spacey looking. Looks are definitely deceiving here, though. The amount of times I almost DNF’d this book was insane. There was nothing really pulling me in, and I wasn’t a fan of the writing style. But I am proud to say I read the whole thing….eventually. What I thought I was getting was a cool book all about people living in space and a badass MC coming to save the day and kick evil’s butt. Except, the evil never actually shows its face, so we can only assume that Rhoma Grace is actually highly delusional and needs psychological help. I have to say I was disappointed that this turned out to be more focused on the love triangle between her, Mathias, and Hysan than the actual apocalyptic happenings around them. Rho turned out to be pretty disappointing as far as literary heroines go because:

a) She had absolutely NO actual respect from anyone, but she is supposedly the new ‘Holy Mother’ of Cancer….royalty with ZERO respect is laughable. She was basically thrown to the wolves and they tore her apart because she was a small naive child and she did nothing to prove them wrong.
b) She was so focused on making googly eyes at her male companions that there was no time left for the action. If you’re so scared of Ophiuchus then do something besides whine about the adults who won’t listen.
c) She doesn’t grow throughout the book at all! You would think after all the people and Houses dying that she would learn something, but NO.

The only thing truly impressive about this book was the setting. Romina crafts a beautiful world, but her characters all but ruin it. While I was looking forward to the whole history of the Houses and the Zodiac, it fell short for me. I was left feeling confused and disoriented. The BIG BAD of the book was also a dud because he lurks in the background, and in Rho’s waking nightmares. I am also still livid about the ending, and I keep putting off the second book because of it. WHY ROMINA? WHY?

Rating: 2/5

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