My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Ok, first up, I feel kind of mean that this is only a 3 star? But it is what it is. [It's a very personal-reason rating though, as in I liked it but not SUPER liked it mainly cos there was too much physics in it haha]
We're moving up the ladder in this series, where the problem of shady bosses in When You Had Power and nasty power outages in You Knew the Price have escalated to reach Southern California's Public Utilities Commissioner, Akemi Sato. Is this threat real? Or is the Regional Director going off the rails? In a pandemic? (Well, a new virus outbreak anyway.)
I feel like Of Kindness and Kilowatts suffers from "second book syndrome" (even though it's the third), where the strong buildup from the first two books have reached a bit of a plateau. There's a lot of physics in this one (which went a little over my head) and they make some cool (and disturbing) discoveries, but the tension isn't as high as the previous one, and it feels more plotty (idk if this is a word, but it now is). But you gotta get through this one to get to the final book, Yet You Cry When It Hurts!
Relationship wise, this one focuses on Akemi and his relationship with his estranged father, Dai - which again was personally not as relatable for me as the themes of found family and community were in the first two books.
Plus points: it has tea! <3
Note: I received a digital ARC of this book from the author. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
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The Nothing is Promised series: