I enjoy Sci-fi, but there is so much involved that it isn’t the quick easy escapism I typically go for. When I saw the synopsis for Majority it sounded like one I may enjoy—and I absolutely did!
The world building and politics told through the lens of Thomas’ questions and learning was an excellent way to get the information without the info dump. I went straight into book 2 and have preordered book 3. This is a series I would gladly revisit in the future.
Quite good. This author writes well, and created an engaging story and characters. Nicely done/
I really apprciate the free copy for review!!
This book was intriguing and original! If you’re into sci-fi, it should definitely be on your TBR list!
My first impression was of a slow start, but a great build-up of characters. I loved the gradual world-building, new information perfectly intertwined with action, getting to a great pace quickly.
Before we go on, you should know “Majority(Torth)” is the first book in a series of 6 books! The Torth series has been written already and will be gradually released. Check out the author’s website to keep up to date.
Let’s get into everything!
In a captivating sci-fi adventure, an unlikely hero faces off against a galactic empire endowed with mind-reading abilities.
Thomas Hill, an underprivileged genius, discovers a means to save his life from a debilitating disease. Celebrated as a prodigy, his unparalleled achievements attract the attention of everyone, including the bioengineered super-geniuses who govern an universe-spanning empire. Among them, some have ambitions of complete supremacy. To thwart their plans, Thomas must navigate a realm of strategy, social intrigue, and formidable power.
Aided by his foster sisters and an enigmatic superhuman, he races to outmanoeuvre the empire’s telepathic dominion and reinstate harmony with the cosmos.
The Torth are an original, fascinating collective character. I loved discovering this built society with all its intricacies. The author reveals it gradually and it makes for an epic puzzle, as the action unfolds. Here are the main traits of this civilisation:
They are telepaths, able to read your every thought. They are also capable of giving painful seizures to those in their proximal area. They take advantage of that to enslave other races, having turned into a galactic empire.
They haven’t created everything. They are not gods. Their slaves intuitively know that. However, they use their powers to steal their slaves’ knowledge. They not only absorb it, they also ensure, by separating children from adults, the fact that knowledge is no longer transferred between generations.
They are accustomed to obey what they all decide as a majority. This idea seems ideal, until you understand that their laziness has changed from making the best decision to ensure the good of the group into following the opinions of a few influencers. This definitely sounds familiar.
Not tolerant of mistakes. Not tolerant of differences (they don’t allow the existence of extra powers). Not big on privacy. – These ideas seem very communist to me and I loved to see them woven into a sci-fi novel.
They don’t allow inherited wealth. This actually seems like an extraordinary idea, a true meritocratic society would be an extraordinary thing to watch.
The most notable Torth character is, of course, the Upward Governess. She is a genius and has ulterior motives for everything she does. Though a powerful leader in her world, we see her longing for connection and joy.
Thomas is the main character. It’s his journey and his point of view we see most often in the novel. His evolution isn’t always so easily analysable, as he starts off as a good-hearted, genius boy and ends up being able to torture his best friends. It makes you wonder how much of his good nature was because he needed people to care for him, due to his disabilities (he has an incurable degenerative neuromuscular disease). When this stops being such a problem, he becomes less caring, at least apparently.
Of course, it is all understandable by the fact that he was coerced into doing bad things. How much responsibility does one bear, when they feel coerced into questionable actions? Thomas’ ethics and moral conundrums throughout the novel make it all the more interesting and can open a whole lot of fascinating debates.
Kessa seems to be the most interesting character of all. She is the only one that is so open minded, so avid for knowledge and so intelligent that she actually changes her fate. She is able to recognise new, radical ideas. She maintains her curiosity into old age. She is willing to suffer just about anything to understand herself and the universe better.
Cherise starts as a misunderstood teen with suicidal thoughts. She grows very close to Thomas, both being adopted.
Vy (Violet) is Cherise and Thomas’s foster sister. She is older, generally feeling responsible for them.
Ariock starts off as a gentle giant. His condition is a mystery for people, as it isn’t associated with the usual problems of strength that come with it. On the contrary, Ariock seems extremely powerful. He is, however, very secluded. His mother, Delia, keeps him at home to protect him from being teased and bullied at school. Ariock prefers it as well.
My Review – Spoiler free
Now that you’ve read a bit about the characters, you may have a hint of what this book is about, but not nearly enough to spoil it for you. I’ll keep it this way here.
What I liked the most about “Majority”:
The author creates a captivating society – the Torth. The more you find out about it, the more you draw parallels to our world and crazy ideas of the past. I am very curious about what exactly will make this empire fall. It seems so grand, I cannot see it end its dominion over the universe in a believable way (I hope this comes in the next books of the series).
Thomas’s story is moving. His actions under duress make him very human and flawed. His resistance to the addiction of being connected with the Torth is admirable. His loyalty to friends is tested and I really enjoyed the way it evolves.
As we follow each character and get his point of view, we never get to have the complete picture. For me, this is what got me attached to each character and what allowed me to get a better understanding of their feelings and intentions.
We get to witness how slaves have worked out solutions to survive and thrive without being noticed by the Torth. This idea seemed hilarious at first, yet it makes sense. Oppressed people have always found a way to survive as well as preserve their identity.
The Megacosm – I can only talk about it here (so as to not give too much away) as being similar to the internet, only way bigger, way more intrusive and way more addictive. Loved the idea of it in the book!
What I didn’t like:
This empire is so vast, spanning galaxies, the Torth clearly consider humans similar to slaves, yet Earth enjoys its freedom. It makes no sense not to have conquered it already, especially since it’s clearly being used as a hideout. This is just me and I don’t exclude having overlooked the explanation for it in the book.
As sci-fi books usually are, this one was a bit long as well. I feel it could have been just a little shorter, without messing up the character building.
I can’t wait to read more about everything and dive again into the world Abby Goldsmith created! All in all, it was a relaxing, entertaining read that I finished very quickly. It really kept me rooting for the characters, despising the Torth along with them. There is nothing more I can ask from a book! 🥰
The writing is smooth and the story is interesting. The idea of really intelligent beings that are also really terrible is kind of annoying but that didn't stop me from reading it. This book is great sci Fi with a complex story that will make you think.
This was such a great concept in a space-opera adventure, it does everything that was promised and I enjoyed what I read. The characters were everything that I was hoping for and worked with the scifi elements of the story. Abby Goldsmith has a great writing style and it left me wanting more in this series.
By Abby Goldsmith
This fantasy was captivating from the very beginning. What kind of abilities does Thomas possess? As far as his foster sister, Cherise, is concerned, his intelligence is clearly outweighed by his gift for seeing into the heart of people around him. Thomas is intrigued in the way Cherise sees the world around her. Will their connection survive the challenges that await them?
This book is for mature audiences mostly for violent content and some mature themes. It is thoughtfully constructed and flows so skillfully, I was drawn into every tiny detail. The story explores humanity at it’s best and worst. I highly recommend this novel for the complexities and introspective viewpoints. Wonderful writing all around!
For more information on this author, check out her website at: https://abbygoldsmith.com/
I thoroughly enjoyed Abby Goldsmith's space opera. Thomas Hill is a poor crippled youth. He has one great secret. Thomas can read anyone's mind as long as they are within 12 feet of him. He and a group of people are captured and sent to an alien planet. The novel keeps the reader engaged. I look forward to the sequel.
This was a well-paced novel that sacrificed character development in pursuit of pushing the plot. This novel had a lot to say and get done as the first in a series. The outcome was rushed characterization that may uninvest the reader by subsequently not giving a shjt what happens.
The whole, “suddenly in space” thing, then onto other worlds via super high tech, just did not marry with the juvenile rhetoric of the Torth. “We are so smart that we are totally unaware of our collective narcissism. Die you insignificant alien/slave species!!”. I can’t say for sure that that is mutually exclusive. Buuut, it kinda is when burgeoning neophyte human species have less tech and higher empathy. The Torth are blessed with an assured comfortable existence. The slave master component is formulaic in that it helps expedite the plot. Easy to label a race of beings with superior tech without the complexities of cumulative experiences that birthed their current state. Since this novel is predicated on our descendancy from the Torth it begs for an outcome predisposed to humility. Now if the Torth were worm hole jumping conquerors with slimy silicon-based tentacles, their actions might be normative. A collective of minds that number in the trillions, are a super smart collossus of knowledge, ruminate in mere seconds and then render a verdict of “KILL”! is just not believable.
The novel gets interesting at about the 50% mark when our crew finally escapes the city. The characters remain one-dimensional despite an interesting quest. This lack of development is expressed through Delia. Accusatory and antagonistic is her constant theme that gets older than fuk real fast. The novel would have been better off if she had fallen to her death early on. Characters that are thinly built usually have an over-emoting, singular focus. Cherise is reverting to her sullen emo persona because she can, although her development hinted at internal choices to embrace beauty. She eventually comes around but is mostly relegated to the back seat. Vy, the super ginger, has the hots for a 9 foot tall gentle giant with hidden powers because every YA novel needs a love story, right? Genius boy, once a humble, affable, and caring person is now stern super genius boy. Again, not believable when your formative years have shaped a foundation predicated on empathy only to turn into ‘logic monster’ who tortures his closest friends. <YAWN>.
The writing is good. The story line, highly creative. The aliens that abound are interesting yet fleeting in presentation. There are some portions of the plot/story line that need to be thought out better to really invest the reader. It is too bad that this entire series has already been written and is queued up for publication. IMHO this series needs some intense redirection in both story line and character development. There needs to be some serious fat trimming to invest the reader rather than writing for oneself.
I like this author as I have a thing for gingers. Still only 2 stars as the overall impact of the novel was weakened by lengthy internalizations by weak characters.