Review: Alien: The Cold Forge by Alex White

Cover of Alien: The Cold Forge by Alex White
Alien: The Cold Forge by Alex White

I read the complete Salvagers Trilogy (A Big Ship at the Edge of the Universe/A Bad Deal for the Whole Galaxy/The Worst of All Possible Worlds) by Alex White last year.

I also read my first Aliens tie-in novel (Alien 3: The Unproduced Screenplay from William Gibson by Pat Cadigan)

And as I enjoyed both separately, I thought I’d combine the author and franchise in the form of my next Alien book. 

[Spoiler]I was so gripped by this Alien story that, whilst reading it, I hunted down a great deal on a seven-book-set of other Alien tie-ins. Then when I fished The Cold Forge I ordered  Alien: Into Charybdis, which continues the story in some way. [/Spoiler}

The Cold Forge starts when a callous auditor from Weyland-Yutani is sent to a secret space lab to assess the profitability of the various research projects on board. It ends with shock and horror. 

I wasn’t expecting how much horror White weaved in. Their style for this story is dark. They managed to build a tension that made me want to know what could happen next to the scientists.

The reader knows how dangerous the xenomorphs can be even if the scientists think they are safely caged up, but what becomes clear is that the Aliens aren’t the only thing to fear. 

You can tell White is enjoying themselves. They go deep. There is no sugarcoating here. They also made a disabled character one of their main focuses. I wish more books would include disabled rep and make the characters part of the ordinary course of the story. 

I am excited to read the post-2014 batch of Alien novels from Tim Lennon, James A. More, Christopher Moore, Keith DeCandido, Tim Waggoner, and others. White has set a high bar to reach. 

Rating 4.5/5