Fortune’s Rising – Or Is This One A Dud?

Book Review : Fortune’s Rising
Outer Bounds
By Sara King

Spoiler Alert!



Under the supertech Coalition government, Fortune’s colonists are enslaved to harvest the highly valuable brain-enhancing drug Yolk, often losing their sanity and lives in the process. The population is dying off and the planet is becoming a police state whose only purpose is to harvest Yolk. But a revolution is in the air, fueled by an unlikely band of rebels:

Anna Landborn, a brilliant, sociopathic child, and her quiet, lethally gifted sister, Magali; Runaway Joel, a virtuous military pilot turned tormented smuggler; Milar Whitecliff, a tattooed, chess-playing fugitive full of hatred and heart; Doberman, a simple robot in the throes of a startling transformation; and Tatiana Eyre, a captured Coalition soldier torn between loyalty and love.

As their paths and fates collide, the battle to spark a full-scale uprising is violently challenged by the Nephyrs, the government’s elite army of sadistic, near-indestructible cyborgs. But the prophecies of a mad soothsayer have foretold the coming of a hero destined to turn the tide—and the fight for freedom is just beginning.
(Courtesy of

Adult Point of View

I thought Fortune’s Rising had a lot of promise, with a complex world system, a society spawning evil and a sociopathic child. Unfortunately I was disappointed. I read this book directly after reading Cyberstorm, which is also science fiction/apocalyptic. The only reason this book will be given more stars is because the plot is driven by the characters instead of the characters driven by the plot.

My first disappointment was the characters. I didn’t even remotely like one character until about half way through the book. Even then, “like” is a bit too strong of a word. I almost liked Tatiana, Patrick, Miles and the Dobie, the AI robot. The most likeable of all of these characters was Patrick, but even so, he was one dimensional.

The evil, sociopathic child, Anna, was over the top. Her mental capacity, even accounting for being a Yolk baby, was too much. She came off as a mouthy teenage sociopath.It’s a bad sign when I laugh in a book when a seven year old child is brought to tears. I was thrown completely over the edge when she performed surgery; it was too ridiculous. She was my least favorite character with no redeeming qualities.

My second disappointment was the language. The profanity didn’t feel authentic to the situation most of the time. It was crude like walking down the halls of high school without the substance of living life as an adult. The entire romance was also incredibly juvenile, which is great for young adult novels or a sappy romance novel.

Fortune’s Rising was a dud.

I was not a fan, and if I read something by Sara King again it would be by mistake.

2.25 out of 5 stars

2 star

  • the Mother

If you liked this one try The Phoenix Conspiracy by Richard L. Sanders, anything by Brandon Sanderson and Incarceron by Catherine Fisher (which is YA, but intriguing).

About Tales Untangled

I am a mother of four children and have a passion for reading. I love sharing my treasury of books with my kids. I also do experiments in cooking which includes such things as Indian Tandoori Chicken slow-cooked in a tagine. I write stories and illustrate in ink.
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6 Responses to Fortune’s Rising – Or Is This One A Dud?

  1. Mark O'Sullivan says:

    Sorry, but I HAVE to disagree with you re Anna Landborn character. For my money, Anna is written with a malicious glee on the writers face and I was enthralled at just how evil and unconscionable she was portrayed to be, which gets even better (i.e. more evil!!) in the second book. I also think you undersold the depth of characterization built by the author – this for me is the stand out feature of the first book. The second book builds cleverly on tantalizing hints given int he first book on several important backstory plotlines and sets up the third book nicely for a grand finale finish.

    • I appreciate hearing that you found the characterization to be interesting.

      A book series that I found to have an interesting growth cycle in characters is Jeff Wheeler’s series beginning with The Queen’s Poisoner. It is young adult and the characters leap forward about 8 years in each book. I also enjoyed the characters written by Brandon Sanderson in most of his books, though a favorite continues to be The Mistborn series and the next set which begins with The Alloy of Law.

      As always I will post comments on other books that you would like to discuss.

  2. Peggy L Saint-Michel says:

    As a former journalist turned librarian I have to strongly disagree with your book review!!! I was pleasantly surprised by Sara King who was previously unknown to me before reading the two Outer Bounds books. Her characters are well drawn with depth and complexity. The first book drops us right into medias res and the story’s plot is revealed through the action of the characters. The characters’ depth and complexity increases throughout the story and as their backstories are revealed the story gains depth and complexity as well. This is a very well crafted story with very interesting characters that I wanted to know more about. The fact that every character carried the complexity of human flaws only served to make them more believable. You complained about her characters being over the top or one dimensional, perhaps the real problem for you was that they were outside a narrow comfort zone. Anna is wonderfully drawn as a deeply flawed and evil yet we catch glimpses of why she is who she is and that her age contributes to her lack of empathy. She’s a child gleefully stomping anthills but because she’s a genius she has the capability to stomp entire civilizations of people. Oops!! If you read the second book Patrick’s backstory is being revealed slowly on purpose. Both of these books are very good.

  3. Daryl Cheshire says:

    I thought Fortune’s Rising is a brutal story. It was enjoyable at the start and I liked Dobie and Tatiana, but the story got more savage with the eggers in the cave onwards. I decided not to continue with the sequels.

  4. I agree with you. It was brutal and I won’t read the sequels.
    What books have you enjoyed?

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