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Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite
Chaos Rising is a work of fiction in the science fiction, action, and adventure sub-genres and was penned by author P. D. Blackwell. The work is intended for the general reading audience, and it forms the first novel in The Erstallius Chronicles. Our protagonist is Bev Colli, a low-ranking person according to the social system on her homeworld, who finds herself the victim of misfortune after she is sent to work in a mine deep beneath the surface. Plagued by sudden visions, Bev comes into contact with our second protagonist, Arlud Erstallius, trying to uncover the force which has captivated Bev’s mind as the world around them descends into the ravages of war.
Author P. D. Blackwell has crafted a compelling, complex, and cinematic work of science fiction with plenty of chilling psychological undertones and all-out action scenes to offer its readers. One of the features which I found particularly impressive about this piece was its worldbuilding, and the realistic psychological and emotional demands placed upon those who find themselves living in this harsh caste system. I really felt for Bev in her struggles and I enjoyed her journey to freedom with Arlud at her side. The dialogue was also very effective, serving to display the unique traits of the characters whilst moving the complex events of the plot forward in a natural way without falling into too much extraneous backstory. Overall, I would highly recommend Chaos Rising to fans of incredible worldbuilding, space opera emotional dynamics, and readers of accomplished science fiction everywhere.