Review: 172 Hours on the Moon

172 Hours on the Moon by Johan Harstad
Release Date ~ April 17, 2012
Little, Brown Books for Young Readers ~ Hachette Book Group
ISBN13: 9780316182881
ARC received from HBG Canada for review
Goodreads Synopsis:
It's been decades since anyone set foot on the moon. Now three ordinary teenagers, the winners of NASA's unprecedented, worldwide lottery, are about to become the first young people in space--and change their lives forever.

Mia, from Norway, hopes this will be her punk band's ticket to fame and fortune.

Midori believes it's her way out of her restrained life in Japan.

Antoine, from France, just wants to get as far away from his ex-girlfriend as possible.

It's the opportunity of a lifetime, but little do the teenagers know that something sinister is waiting for them on the desolate surface of the moon. And in the black vacuum of space... no one is coming to save them.

In this chilling adventure set in the most brutal landscape known to man, highly acclaimed Norwegian novelist Johan Harstad creates a vivid and frightening world of possibilities we can only hope never come true.

172 Hours on the Moon was one book that immediately caught my eye when I came across it, and I was THRILLED when I had an opportunity to read it in advance of the release date.

I haven't read very many horror/thriller books before, so I didn't think this one would be able to scare me. I didn't understand how a book could keep you up at night, burrowed under your blankets for safety, while frantically turning the pages... until I read 172 Hours on the Moon.

Also,  make sure you check out the giveaway at the end of this review because one commenter will win a copy of this book!

  1. Well-translated novel:
    172 Hours on the Moon was first published in 2008 in Norway; when I found this out, I was a little bit worried that the writing would be awkward or the translating sloppy. But once I started reading the book, I completely forgot it had ever been translated at one point. It's very well done, and I was thoroughly impressed with the translator, who did an excellent job at keeping the atmosphere of the book while putting it in another language- a VERY difficult thing to do. Don't let the fact that this is translated stop you from picking it up.
  2. Suspenseful, creepy read:
    The first thing 172 Hours on the Moon does in the prologue is get the creepy factor going. I started reading this book at night - terrible idea. And the next day I read it while I was home alone - another bad idea. Although there's a gradual build up to the actual events on the moon by giving some background information, the creepiness starts well before the crew's trip into space. And it just doesn't stop! From the very first chapter to the last one, this book is riddled with some scary stuff. But I want to point out that it's all a very subtle kind of scary; it's disturbing, and delightfully creepy but it also isn't the most terrifying thing I've ever read. So if you're hesitant about scary books, I'd still suggest giving this one a try. Also, I couldn't look at the cover while reading (the eyeball one), it just freaked me out too much.
  3. Very unique premise:
    Okay, just stick with me here: three teenagers get the chance to go on a trip to the moon. It's a bit silly, and the reasoning behind it isn't solid but then I also realized that vampires in highschools aren't exactly logical or reasonable either. So forgive it that kind of silly idea, because this book has a really great premise going for it. It takes place in space, which is terrifying. Space is so out there and there are so many things we don't understand about it that it makes the perfect setting for this book. And I loved the three different characters introduced, as well as the explanation given for the scary things happening to them. It was pretty disturbing actually, especially the ending. By the way, I think this book has a great ending- one of the best I've read.
I can't accurately convey my love for this book in one little review, but I'll say that I think this is going to be one of the most underrated books of the year. It isn't being talked about very much but it's SO good! Plus, I can say that this one gave me nightmares - a couple nights after finishing it, the evil "things" (I won't say what it is, I don't want to spoil!) showed up in my dreams except I was being awesome and fighting back so it wasn't super scary. But still, I think the fact that they showed up at all says something about the quality of this book and it's ability to stick with you. I can easily say this is one of my new favourite books, and one of the best of 2012.

P.S. You have to go check out this cool website, Hachette created for the book. It's just like the one in the book!
AND more importantly, you must go check out the YouTube they have for the book! They have some SUPER CREEPY video clips to go with it, although they some are a teensy bit spoiler-y because they hint at what happens later on. But it really isn't any HUGE secret.

So this isn't the technical book trailer, but it's the ad they made based off the one from the book. Personally, I love the one showing Antoine's transmission from the moon - but it's the one I'm warning you gives you a pretty good hint of what's to come in the book :) So don't click on this link if you don't want ANY spoilers.

10% Discount / APMA12 Coupon Code / Book Depository

Because I loved this book so much, I'm going to buy this book for one lucky commenter. I'll be ordering from The Book Depository, so it's open to all the countries TBD ships to :) Standard contest rules apply, just comment with an answer this question and leave me a way to contact you:

Would you want to go on a trip to the moon?


Angkarina said...

I don't know if I'm the only one not seeing the review (just a blank space)? But I'm looking forward to your review of this book.
I've read the premise on BookDepository & I hope it'll be a good read!

angkarina_angkasuwan at hotmail dot com

Alicia said...

I so wouldn't go to the moon at all. I'm afraid of heights and just thinking of being in OUTER SPACE is making my feet and palms sweat!!

itlnsilver (at) yahoo (dot) ca

Christina Kit. said...

This one sounds INCREDIBLE!!

I love science fiction, and the fact that it's teens in space is such a pleasant twist:) And it's a huge feat when, in a plot-based sciency story, you still connect with the characters.

I'm with you on loving horror that's more subtle and creepy other than the blood and guts kind of scary.

Thanks for providing the links

It's hugely important that the translator is so good you forget it's originally in a different language. That's so important and such a difficult thing to do, to translate a whole novel and keep the character and personality of the story itself in a second language without jarring the reader out of the story with awkward phrasing.

Thanks for all the extra info you gave us:)

ccfioriole at gmail dot com

Christina Fiorelli said...

Got so caught up I forgot to answer the question!

I would NEVER go on a trip to the moon. I'd say yes to spending a night in a haunted house (I'd love to do that actually;) or anything else that's creepy, but in space, who do you call for help??

You're just floating there and if something goes wrong, then what? There's no Space AAA if the spaceship decides to stop working.

ccfioriole at gmail dot com

bookworm105 said...

Thanks for the review. This reminds me of Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory, but it's more modern. =D

Lexie said...

AWESOME review. While I've heard mixed things about this one, I'm determined to get my hands on a copy, because any book that can genuinely terrify readers is a book that I want to read. Plus, however improbable, the premise is also really freaking awesome.

As far as the question . . . I'm not certain. On the one hand, I don't think I'd have the guts or the fitness for it. But on the other hand, I'm overwhelmingly curious, so one never knows.


curlypow said...

Hadn't heard of this one before, but now I'm really intrigued. Thanks for the giveaway. Btw, videos were great.

curlypow3 AT gmail DOT com

ChristasBooks said...

I totally agree this book has been underrated so far. It's so amazingly creepy and good. If you liked it, you should check out the movie "Moon" it has a similar vibe to it.

Jessica said...

This looks like a great book. Thanks for the giveaway!!

I would like to go to the moon, especially the dark side. I'm curious to see what's there. Mind you I'm also really afraid that something would happen.

jbronderblogs at aol dot com

Jessica Etches said...

I have to admit I don't think I could take the wait time it actually takes to get to the moon, however I would love to be on the moon and explore it!

SacredmOOn said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
SacredmOOn said...

I haven't read a lot of science fiction...yet, but this one sounds like such an intriguing, fun and creepy read! I really like the cover! It is really creepy and grabs your attention must-read-me status. Well, for me that is.
Awesome review!
Thanks for sharing and the chance to win it!! :D
DeAnna Schultz

F said...

AaaahhH! This book has been sitting on my ARC pile for a while now. While it's not usually the type of book I would get excited about, after reading your review I must admit I am kind of sold :D Definitely intriguing!!

Mary Preston said...

If given the chance to go to the moon I would take it. To view Earth from space would be amazing.

Fabulous giveaway thank you.


Natasha said...

I don't think I would want to go to the moon, i'm not a very big fan of heights. Thanks for the chance to win!
natasha_donohoo_8 at hotmail dot com

franchie15 said...

Wow. Great review! Of course. I've always wondered how it is to be out there! I'd love to go to the MOON! :)


Amanda said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Amanda said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Amanda said...

Oh my gosh, even that cover made me shudder a little bit. And I would love to go to the moon! With plenty of other people and certified moon expert types along too. :)


Livia09 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Livia09 said...

I think it'd be pretty awesome to go to the moon.Granted, it wouldn't be with the Doctor on the TARDIS as I dreamed it would be, but still, to see the moon! My goodness, it'd just be so surreal. I love observing different sceneries, and the moon would definitely prove to be a wonderful sight to take in! Soooo, to some it up, yes, yes I would like to go to the moon.


Adva said...

Sounds like a must read!

As for the trip to the moon - I would totally go! I love traveling, I love exploring and it's just so different than anything we know. Plus, since I was a child, I had a fascination for anything space related (it blew up to be a mini obsession in the 5th grade, but settled down to healthy interest since then).

advakramer at gmail dot com

whoopeeyoo said...

Going to the moon would be fantastic! I love new places and being lost in them. Haha! Only, if it would be like that in 172 hours, I'm not sure I would really want to go. Haha!

tomakunisnumberone at gmail dot com

Dianne said...

Yeah, I would love to go to the moon! And thanks for this giveaway! The book sure looks like a must read! :D

dianne.acoba at gmail dot com

churlaloo said...

As long as it's free! I love free things so thanks for this giveaway! dianne_dld at yahoo dot com

Lacey Thach said...

Yes I would definitely love to go to the moon! It would be amazing to go :)
Thanks for the giveaway!

Just a Lil Lost said...

How awesome!! I've heard how creepy this book is! I don't think I'd want to go to the moon... maybe more interested in the actual spaceship ride and how that is.

Thanks! :) you know my email ;)

ChristasBooks said...

So in my earlier comment I didn't say if I would want to go to the moon!

As a die hard Star Wars/Trek fan I would definitely want to go to the moon. Anywhere in space really. It would be so neat so go where so few people have gone before.

hiba008 said...

Thank you for the giveaway! I would love to go to the moon! It sounds and looks awesome to defy gravity :)

Stella Chen said...

I think the moon, although explored, always appeared mysteious to me so I would totally take a trip to the moon.

Hallie said...

Just to start out I never plan on going to space
I just finishes reading this book...
yeah i am not ever going to see the moon the same way ever again. never ever ever. Just thinking about the moon makes me shudder and want to dig a hole in the ground and stay there forever! This book is amazing but actually really scary! when i got this book from the library i didn't know it was like this!

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