Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Entertaining Science Fiction

Last weekend I should have been grading papers, but I was pleasantly interrupted by an eBook, Darrell Bain's Starship Down. When I buy eBooks, I usually wait for a sale, then I load up a group of them onto my elderly PDA. Often, I read such books when I have a few minutes, since it is so easy to carry a number of them in my purse. Sometime on Friday, I began this recent science fiction release, and from the dedication and opening Starship Down got my attention. Every time I started to put it down to work on something else, the combination of characters and an organic plot would draw me back to the story. By Sunday morning, I had finished, allowing me to return to more mundane reading. 

While this novel is not perfect, including some stereotyping and a bit of a deux ex machina ending, it is an entertaining read. My favorite science fiction yarns involve space travel, an element of suspense, exotic worlds and beings, and characters who must overcome the odds, and by so doing, become greater than they were when introduced during the exposition phase of the story. Romance is always welcome, if appropriate to the characters. Bain manages to hit all of the marks on my checklist, although his romance tends to be more physical than emotional. Just like a guy, huh?


Starship Down is available in print as well as electronic versions, and is a memorable tale by an author who is really quite prolific. I've also read the book he co-authored with Travis Taylor, Human by Choice, and I read one of the Pet Plague series, and all were enjoyable. Bain's works always make me think and smile, and that's a good combination.

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