Review: Into the Churn by Hayley Reese Chow

Posted April 4, 2024 by Lola in Review, Romance, Sci-Fi / 2 Comments

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Into the ChurnInto the Churn (Into the Churn #1)
by Hayley Reese Chow

My Rating: 4 stars

Genre: Science Fiction Romance
Age Category: Young Adult
Type of romance: m/f

Earth was tame. Belethea is not.

Seventeen-year-old Ezren Hart interns in her mother’s terraforming lab, studying Belethea’s deadly storms with the dream of giving her backwater planet open teal skies. But when budget cuts threaten to shut down her mother’s lab, Ezren enters Belethea’s Race Royale, the system’s deadliest and most lucrative race. To win, she’ll have to run, drive, and fight her way across Belethea’s barren landscape while navigating its savage and volatile storms. With her planet’s future, and her family’s, on the line, she can’t afford to lose. But first, she’ll have to convince her handsome royale partner that their planet is worth saving.

Foster Sterling is a jaded ex-prodigy royaler still reeling from his partner’s death in a training accident. When Ezren Hart comes charging into his life, her passion reminds him of what he once loved about racing and his dream of returning pride to their planet. Still, no matter how fast they go, they can’t outrun the mysterious string of deadly accidents following them like a curse. As Foster falls harder for Ezren, he races to piece the clues together. But with time running out and their survival on the line, he’ll have to decide if their dreams are worth their lives.

Perfect for fans of underdog heroes, slow-burn romance, and high-stakes sci-fi, INTO THE CHURN races across a new planet of savage storms and dazzling tech. Fall in love with Ezren and Foster as they battle side-by-side to save their scrappy world on a ruthless interplanetary stage where appearances are everything, speed means survival, and the only thing deadlier than the storms are the other racers.

My Review

I received a free copy from the publisher through Netgalley and voluntarily reviewed it.

The cover for this one was what caught my eye and I knew I had to read it. I requested it, got approved the same day and started it the next day after I finished the book I was reading. Into the Churn is an action packed science fiction romance books. It’s set on a planet called Belethea that’s plagued by dangerous storms. And follows Ezren as she qualified for the system’s biggest race.

This book grabbed my attention from the start with Ezren and her passion for the planet she lives on, her love for her family and her belief in the terraforming goal. When things go south she realizes entering the systems biggest and most dangerous race the BRR is the only chance she has to change things. Her passion and determination really shone through from the start and she brings that to her training and participation for the race. The race is done in doubles and she ends up teaming up with Foster who has been on the race team for a few years. Which is where the romance comes in. Foster is a bit disillusioned with the race after losing his previous double and he isn’t sure he wants to race again until Ezren runs in there.

There is plenty of action with the races they participate in that lead up to the big race. There is fighting and racing with other opponents as well as the dangerous weather and storms against them. There is a bit of mystery as well that gets resolved near the end. The ending wraps everything up in a satisfying way, but leaves room for a sequel.

I really liked this book. It has this very slid structure with the plot keeping moving forward. It also has plenty of tropes, but they are well written and the book still manages to feel fresh too. There is plenty of action and things going on and I wanted to know what would happen next. The pace is good too, with enough happening or changing and things not dragging on too long.

I liked reading about both Ezren and Foster as well as seeing them form the others point of view. Ezren with her passion and determination. And Foster is just such a solid and reliable presence and I loved how he is there for Ezren and helps her along. They make for a great couple and I liked reading about them together. There are some great sweet scenes. And even their conflicts made sense and some drama, but it all was well written and didn’t drag on too long.

The world building was another thing I really liked about this book. It’s clear the author thoughts a lot about this new system and the planets and stations on there. There are all these little bits and pieces sprinkled throughout to give the reader a feel for the worlds. I liked learning about Belethea and the other planets, but also how the people from different places have different fashion standards and such. And there are some different words the characters use.

To summarize: This was a solid read and I really enjoyed it. Into the Churn kept me reading with plenty of action, some mystery, likable characters and a good romance. The story is well plotted and paced, I kept wanting to know what would happen next. I liked Ezren’s passion and determination and how she joined the race team for a reason; to bring change to the planet she lives on. I liked Foster’s steady and reliable presence and how he always is there for Ezren. Seeing them fall in love was great and I liked the slow burn romance. There are some sweet moments between them and I liked how the conflict and drama that is there made sense and didn’t drag on too long. The world building was well done, it’s clear there is a lot of thought put in the world building. There are bits and pieces are sprinkled throughout the book that makes the world comes alive. This one reads as a standalone with a satisfying ending, but I see there will be a sequel and I am excited for that one!

4 Stars


You can also read my review on Goodreads and Bookbub.


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