I just finished this. I was disappointed. The writing is good, better than average for the genre, but the story was not very engaging, and it didn’t provide any additional information or backstory for Covenant. There are some familiar names, but not much real depth added. The plot is a cult known as the Earthsavers is trying to stop the launch of the Covenant because their Prophet has nightmares about monstrous aliens, and they believe colonists will alert the aliens to our existence and they will come to Earth and kill everybody. The leaders of the cult are comically cliche and the events that foil their schemes stretch your suspension of disbelief. Plus, already knowing the Covenant launches takes all the real suspense out of the story.
I think I've conditioned my brain to not read Alan Dean Foster. I read so many novelizations of his that on one hand I have this compulsion to find out more about the story like his treatment of ALIEN and the other hand I thought STAR WARS: SPLINTER OF THE MIND'S EYE was the catalyst seed that destroyed the movie series. So its difficult. I don't even know if I still have that original ALIEN novel.
A perfect example is like KRULL (1983) love the movie but something about that movie had that SW feel where you expected more that Foster's adaption didn't really provide.
Speaking of old ALIEN books, I haven't opened my comic stacks since 2003. I think I have that ALIEN magazine in there but I didn't find it back then.
I liked the original Aliens comics at the time, but I haven't looked at one in over 20 years. Origins seems to borrow some concepts from them. The Prophet's visions, for example, reminded me of the psychic warnings Newt got, but in the novel they never really confirm if they are real, or if he's just crazy. I don't really like the addition of any kind of mystical element to the story.