Sunday, January 1, 2012

Book Reviews

Short Reviews of Other Peoples Work

JumpSpace Funny thing: I ran across this book while looking for a book someone had described to me and could not name the author or title. This is not the book they were talking about but it had most of their description. This is a story of pocket universes created through the application of matrioshka arrays and a man and his pet cat who is an AI Avatar for the larger AI that runs the displays. In this story the main character is an architect who just happens to be studying the Implied Spaces that were created when these world were designed. (Those spaces create in a sort of accident of design while the architects are setting the structures and features of their normal designs.) His quest for a simple understanding of these spaces and the flora and fauna that have populated them thrust him and his AI avatar into an adventure across the arrays. An adventure that threatens their lives and the continued existence of the arrays. Though it builds slow. It starts out with a sword and sorcery motif in one of the pocket worlds. It quickly builds up steam and when the mains plot kicks in it grabs your attention.

JumpSpace Having never read this before I jumped at the opportunity to grab up the E-book of Legions of Space by Keith Laumer. Once again Keith pulls through with a timeless tale. This time he rivals Robert Heinlein with a flawed hero who pulls out all stops to stay alive. No matter how hard life has kicked him Legion has a way of surviving and eventually coming out on top. This has a bit of Heinlein's Glory Road and Philip Jose Farmers Green Odyssey. Told only the way Keith Laumer can tell it.

JumpSpace The Making of Legend by Richard Barrs was a fine add to my E-book collection. If you like the old Robert Heinlein and are a fan of The Last Starfighter and other such movies you should love this book. Making of Legend has the making of a new universe of endless tales. The protagonist in this installment is a bit full of himself and has a long way to go to grow up. Pick this book up and you'll see how that works out in a one night read.

JumpSpace This book took me by surprise. The main character was someone who I found so engaging I could relate to her immediately. And the story is peopled with a magnificent supporting cast. There may be a few distractions from errors,(even with a good copy-edit it is hard to get them all) but not enough to ruin the story. Bravo on a first novel. Looking forward to the next. Did someone call for a sequel? I concur.

JumpSpace I'm not a fan of Distopia stories. But I was pointed at After Things Went Bad and decided to give it a chance. My thought is that if you took Rod Serlings Twilight Zone and a bit of Ray Bradbury and blended it up you might come out with this. Some times the writing style is a bit rough but it works because these are gritty stories. They showcase some things about human nature even if it's parts of human nature that aren't too flattering. They are little chunks out of someones daily life. But they hit their point hard and make you think. Still not a fan of Distopia.

JumpSpace I picked up the E-book Retief by Keith Laumer and of course could not resist re-reading stories I've read before. I never tire of reading the stories of this hard hitting diplomat with a penchant for tongue in cheek humor. What I find the most interesting is how they seem to stand the test of time. I can read these stories with the same awe I had for them back in the 60's. I suppose that's because they are more about diplomacy than about science fiction. Anyone who likes Science Fiction containing those suave cut through the red tape action hero's will love this collection.

JumpSpace I acquired Goblin Moon by Teresa Edgerton recently in E-book format. I found it to be entertaining. If you are a fan of Dumas, Dickens, and Tolkien. You'll love this. Add a bit of Shelly and you round it out. The richness of description of the world of the Goblin Moon are reminiscent of Charles Dickens. While the lead Female character would be likened to Little Dorrit. The depth of intrigue is similar to the work of Alexander Dumas. The Male lead is in someways like the Count of Monte Cristo. Throughout is a thread of theme which is like Mary Shelly's Frankenstein. Toss some Dwarves and Goblins into the mix and you'll have trouble putting this one down.

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