Zodiac is a universal let down

Astrology has always been a fascination of mine. Though I’m not sure if I believe it’s credible, I have spent many hours scrolling through weekly horoscopes and researching my personal astrological chart, so when I spied “Zodiac” by Romina Russell with its lovely cover and intriguing name, I decided to purchase it and give it a go.

The story follows Rhoma Grace, a 16 year old girl from planet Cancer with a keen ability to read the stars. After an explosion from one of the planet’s moons destroys the remaining three and leaves the planet engulfed in water, she is appointed to Guardian, a prestigious title to bear in the Zodiac. While reading the stars, she encounters a dangerous being she believes is the cause of the natural disasters that have been raging throughout the galaxy and she’s determined to stop him.

The Zodiac is made up of 12 planets, each named after a zodiac sign. Though every planet inhabits humans, they carry a different breed than the other planets and each breed embodies the characteristics associated with actual zodiac signs. Rho and her two male companions set off on a journey to warn the other planets and it’s fascinating to experience how Russell displays the people of each sign. The building of this world was probably my favorite aspect of the book.

The plot, however, was not so fantastic. For one, Rho is involved in a love triangle. This might not be a negative factor for everyone, but after spending years entranced by the well-known “Twilight” love triangle and reading countless YA novels containing them, they have been a turnoff for me and are pretty juvenile to weave into a story. Also, for being a sci-fi novel, there wasn’t much action throughout most of it, and when things started to pick up pace, the scenes were relatively short and not as detailed as I was hoping for. The big reveals throughout the book weren’t exciting and I could see them coming from a mile away.

Though the writing was decent, the terms used throughout the book were annoying to memorize and hard to pronounce, terms like Psynergy and Abyssthe.

As hard as I tried, I couldn’t connect to Rho at all. Though she was on a quest to save the galaxy, she wasn’t very brave or experienced. Her stubborn personality got on my nerves as well. Rho couldn’t make up her mind with anything and she constantly ignored other characters’ warnings. The only thing I could connect to was that we’re the same age and yet she seems more like a child than I would ever want a character to be.

I did enjoy her friends Nishi and Deke and wished there were more scenes involving them.

“Zodiac” didn’t even get close to the expectations I had for it and perhaps I would have enjoyed it more if I hadn’t set them so high. This book would be great for those who want to read something unique and don’t have a problem with love triangles.