Review: Mass Effect Andromeda: Nexus Uprising by Jason M. Hough and K.C. AlexanderMass Effect: Nexus Uprising (Mass Effect: Andromeda, #1) by Jason M. Hough, K.C. Alexander
Published by Titan Books on March 21st 2017
Pages: 475
Format: Paperback
Genres: Video Game, Science Fiction
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With a new game: Mass Effect Andromeda, set for release in 2017, the launch of a new series of Mass Effect novels is timely. The new game will take the story in a dramatic new direction and is set in a new region of space, with a new and deadly enemy.Titan is publishing four unmissable Mass Effect novels. The novels will act as prequel and sequels to the events in the games and will become part of the overarching Mass Effect saga. These new stories, developed in close collaboration with the Bioware game team, weave directly into the action of the new game--and will reveal events kept secret over the course of game play--and will add to the canonical Mass Effect saga.

I reviewed the video game, Mass Effect Andromeda, for PlayStation LifeStyle when it released. I was not a fan of the game, because despite how fun the gameplay was, the story was lackluster and uninspired. It was yet another Chosen One story by BioWare that stamped out the same formula they’ve been using for their RPGs, but this time they borrowed elements of Halo. I was very disappointed in the title, to say the least.

I completely forgot that I preordered the accompanying novel, Nexus Uprising, until it magically showed up at my door. The story tells of the events that transpired before the game begins, most importantly, the mutiny that occurred on the Nexus, the orbiting city in the Andromeda galaxy. If I hadn’t preordered the book, I most likely wouldn’t have bought it at all. The game’s story left that bad of a taste in my mouth. I am so pleased that I did, because this was one of the best extended universe video game books I have ever read. In fact, I’m a little livid that the game wasn’t written as well as this book.

Tens of thousands of citizens from the Milky Way galaxy banded together to settle in the Andromeda Galaxy 2 million light years away. They said good-bye to their families, boarded arks, and were put in cryostasis for over 600 years. The ship carrying the Nexus left before the arks did with all of the executive and leading staff. When they arrived in their new home, the Nexus crashed into a webbing of dark energy they called the Scourge. All of the leaders were out of stasis when they arrived, and none except for one director survived the crash into the Scourge. All of the leadership is gone, they have to try to carry on, as obviously going back is not possible.

Everyone is in an absolute panic. The new leadership tries to put on a brave face, but they continue to make mistake after mistake in literally all of their choices. It’s really not a surprise that a mutiny transpired. When playing the video game, several characters mention the mutiny and scorn all those acting behind it. The player will meet some of those who were part of it, and without knowing any of the backstory, it’s too easy to make rash decisions with these now exiles. After playing, you know what happened in the mutiny, who the participants were, and what went down.

However, you don’t know until you read just how it all went down. I finished the book horrified at what happened, and now I see other characters from the game in a whole new light. The point-of-view constantly switches between characters, which also givers readers and players a complete perspective on these characters motives and trains of thought. If I were to play again, I would make several different choices based upon interactions with the Nexus Uprising characters. In case you can’t tell, I can’t recommend this book enough to those who have been playing Mass Effect Andromeda.

I hadn’t heard of either author before I started this new journey into the Andromeda galaxy, but I’m eager to read their sci-fi novels now. If BioWare opts for a sequel to Andromeda, perhaps they should tap these two to write the narrative.

About Jason M. Hough

Jason M. Hough (pronounced 'Huff') is the New York Times bestselling author of The Dire Earth Cycle and the near-future spy thriller Zero World. In a former life he was a 3D artist, animator, and game designer (Metal Fatigue, Aliens vs. Predator: Extinction, and many others). He has also worked in the fields of high-performance cluster computing and machine learning.

The Darwin Elevator began life in 2008 as a project for National Novel Writing Month.  The book released on July 30th, 2013 and reached the New York Times Bestseller list the following week. Darwin was Jason’s first published fiction. The subsequent books in that trilogy were released that same summer, along with a prequel novella, The Dire Earth, in 2014.

About K.C. Alexander

K.C. Alexander

K. C. Alexander is the author of Necrotech—a transhumanist sci-fi called “a speed freak rush” by NYT bestseller Richard Kadrey and “a violent thrillride” by award-nominated Stephen Blackmoore. She co-wrote Mass Effect: Andromeda: Nexus Uprising with NYT bestseller Jason M. Hough, Bioware’s first novelization for Mass Effect: Andromeda. Other credits consist of short stories to Fireside magazine and a contribution to Geeky Giving. Specialties include voice-driven prose, imperfect characters, and reckless profanity. Also, creative ways to murder the deserving—in fiction. Probably.

She champions mental health awareness and prefers animals to people. And she writes anything she wants to.

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