Zenn Scarlett
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Zenn Scarlett

3.44 (308 ratings by Goodreads)
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Product details

  • Paperback
  • 130 x 192 x 24mm | 220g
  • Angry Robot
  • Strange Chemistry
  • Botley, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 190884454X
  • 9781908844545
  • 755,139

Rating details

308 ratings
3.44 out of 5 stars
5 17% (53)
4 32% (98)
3 34% (106)
2 11% (34)
1 6% (17)

Our customer reviews

When I was a kid, I wanted to be a vet. (I gave up on that idea the moment I saw our local vet spaying a dog. I don't have the guts for that.) Add to it my love for sci-fi, and there was no way this book could go wrong for me. I knew I'd love this book the moment I saw the cover and read the blurb. I didn't love it. I adore it. As far as Zenn goes-you may be cool, but you'll never be I-cure-alien-animal-forms cool. I felt that Christian Schoon captured the voice of a teenage girl better than many female authors did. Zenn is dedicated to her studies and is passionate about helping animals, but she is just as passionate about shattering prejudice and narrow-mindedness of fellow human inhabitants on Mars whose ignorance often leads to hatred of everything "alien". Zenn is a character that grows and learns in the course of the novel. It's a minor spoiler to say that Zenn has a special connection to animals, as a result of an incident that happens on the first few pages. Even though it is not fully explained, we have enough info to make some conclusions. It was therefore all the more interesting watching Zenn defend her scientific beliefs that I believe will be challenged in the sequel. The scientific aspect captured me as well. I think I recall a documentary where someone mentioned an experimental theory similar to the one that Christian Schoon describes, about the theory of how Indra are used for interstellar transportation. Sometimes it sounds scientific, sometimes metaphysical, to some people it's a matter of religion. A clash of faith vs science, something that I assume will keep Zenn occupied in the sequel as well. The only reason why this isn't a shining five star review is that I found the plot twist slightly predictable. I could smell the rat quite quickly. Of all the creatures that Schoon brings to life, my favorite were Katie, Zenn's adorable and intelligent marsupial pet, and Hamish, a bug-like sexton who finds humans just as puzzling as they find him. Treat yourself to Zenn Scarlett. It's a delight for fans of YA, sci-fi and animal lovers. (Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review)show more
by Ivana
The first thing you're likely to notice about Zenn Scarlett is that it's unlike everything that's currently being published. The second thing you'll notice about Zenn Scarlett is that its breathtaking originality is a very good thing indeed. There have been quite a few surprises from the Angry Robot/Strange Chemistry camp in the last year, and it seems that they just keep on coming. In worldbuilding, Shoon reminded me of a kid with Play-Doh and an overactive imagination. It's easy to feel the joy with which he created each of his creatures, from Zenn's tiny rikkaset Katie to the Kirian sunkiller. Although impressive, the worldbuilding is also a bit overwhelming at times. The Martian setting is completely foreign, there's nothing familiar to hold on to and it's quite disorienting at first. Even now I don't have a clear picture of the Universe as Zenn knows it, but hopefully this will change with the next installment. Third person limited narration is never my favorite, and I think I would have enjoyed Zenn's story more if it were told in first person. As it was, I can't say that I experienced a strong emotional connection, although I did admire her determination and courage. She also seemed a bit young for her sixteen years, which I suppose can be explained by her isolation in the cloister. It's no wonder she was immediately (and a bit naively) attracted to Liam, a townie boy who started showing up at the cloister to help with the animals. She and Liam developed a tentative friendship and an odd sort of relationship, with just a hint of romance between them. Although I'm reluctant to admit it, the plot takes a while to pick up. Combined with the rather complicated worldbuilding, it might be a bit challenging for a less patient reader. The mystery seemed pretty straightforward the entire time, but in the end, it wasn't anything I thought it would be. I love it when I'm absolutely convinced I have everything figured out, only to be proven utterly wrong in the last few chapters. Schoon daringly weaved a tale that is richly imaginative and breathtakingly original. Zenn Scarlett is perfect for younger YA and middle grade readers, but older audience will find much to love about our red-haired heroine and her cloister on the Red Planet.show more
by Maja (The Nocturnal Library)
The story follows the adventures of a 17-year-old girl studying to be an exoveterinarian specializing in the treatment large, dangerous but also deeply fascinating alien animals. Her school is the renowned Ciscan Cloister training clinic, a science-centered cloister on the outskirts of a Martian colony cut off from Earth and teetering on verge of social collapse. Extraordinary alien life forms, exotic medical procedures, xenophobic paranoia, ominous instances of cross-species ESP and unlikely romance ensue... (disclaimer: I'm the author...)show more
by Christian Schoon
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