FeaturedScience Fiction

Children of the Origin Project


Loved it! 😍

A coming-of-age sci-fi tale with everything you look for in the genre: thrills, mystery, philosophy, technology. Well-written and poignant.

For as long as humanity has existed, we have contemplated the stars. We have wondered whether we are truly alone in the universe, whether there is some purpose to our existence. In Children of the Origin Project, author Asa Rubin follows in the footsteps of great sci-fi authors before him in wrestling with these issues. And he does so with verve and passion.

The book starts out with three foster kids, led by Jake (the oldest). Adrift in a world that has largely abandoned them, they all three feel some sense of displacement and helplessness. Then, with the arrival of a giant alien spaceship, they are suddenly thrust into the middle of a world that needs them. Not only that, but the parallels between the aliens' predicament and their own struggles as foster kids soon become apparent. It's a ragtag group of castaways wondering at their ultimate purpose in the middle of the highest stakes imaginable.

If there is something lacking in Children of the Origin Project, I think ultimately it is confidence. There are a few times in which the author tells us the characters' emotions rather than simply showing us the actions and letting us deduce their inner thoughts. That's a tough balancing act, but I think Rubin can lean into his writing and trust his audience to follow along a bit more. When the author shows us the causes of these emotions, like war devastation or tranquil dreams of the River, those images are strong enough and powerful enough to stick with us.

Also, I found young Alex's speech impediment distracting. The boy, barely even a teen, suffers from unnamed birth defects and difficulty speaking. Author Asa Rubin makes the choice to write his dialogue with the speech impediment intact, which I understand. However, it's another extremely difficult knife-edge on which to balance, that distinction between a sympathetic, human portrayal and a caricature. Ultimately, Rubin succeeds, but I think the dialogue could be a bit of a stumbling block for some readers.

Children of the Origin Project kept me hooked until the end. It has everything I love in good sci-fi. The tech is fantastic, with just enough explanation to be interesting and not tedious. The aliens and alien culture are well-thought-out. The characters are relatable. The emotions are high. If I had to sum up my opinion of this book in two words, they would be: READ IT.

Reviewed by

I am a self-published author, content writer at a digital marketing agency, and freelance writer/editor. On my website/blog, I write long-form reviews of books as well as short review blurbs for every book I read each year.

About the author

I've been writing my whole life but only recently started putting my work out there for others to read. I'm a big fan of science fiction, but I also enjoy historical fiction and action thrillers. view profile

Published on May 23, 2021

120000 words

Worked with a Reedsy professional 🏆

Genre: Science Fiction

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