Tag Archives: apocalyptic

Teaser Tuesday – 14th March, 2017

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Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by The Purple Booker.
Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

This is my choice of the day:

Wolf Moon – Book 2 of the Luna series by Ian McDonald
64% Hypatia is a hope, a haven. They may reach it on the dregs of power. There may be something at Hypatia that can deal with a score of killing bots. There may be something between their current position and Hypatia that will save them.
Or their batteries may fail, despite the careful husbanding. Then the bots pounce and annihilate them. Every ten minutes Wagner runs up the radar mast to peep over the horizon. They are always there. They are always closer. No hope of losing them: the two rovers leave indelible fresh tracks, aimed like arrows at Hypatia.

BLURB: Corta Helio, one of the five family corporations that rule the Moon, has fallen. Its riches are divided up among its many enemies, its survivors scattered. Eighteen months have passed. The remaining Helio children, Lucasinho and Luna, are under the protection of the powerful Asamoahs, while Robson, still reeling from witnessing his parent’s violent deaths, is now a ward – virtually a hostage – of Mackenzie Metals. And the last appointed heir, Lucas, has vanished from the surface of the moon. Only Lady Sun, dowager of Taiyang, suspects that Lucas Corta is not dead, and – more to the point – that he is still a major player in the game. After all, Lucas always was a schemer, and even in death, he would go to any lengths to take back everything and build a new Corta Helio, more powerful than before. But Corta Helio needs allies, and to find them, the fleeing son undertakes an audacious, impossible journey – to Earth. In an unstable lunar environment, the shifting loyalties and political machinations of each family reach the zenith of their most fertile plots as outright war between the families erupts.

Last year I read the first book in this series, Luna: New Moon, and thoroughly enjoyed McDonald’s rich evocation of an individualistic society where there is no state intervention and everyone has to pay for air, food and water from the moment they step off the shuttle. Now it’s all gone pear-shaped, it’s riveting stuff…

Review of “Immortality” by Kevin Bohacz

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Immortality

Sarah Mayfield, a young rookie cop, is plagued by dreams and a sense that some horror is just around the corner.  Nobel winning molecular biologist, Professor Mark Freedman is increasingly obsessed with the microbe that made his reputation.  His hunch that fossilised mats of this organism may be linked to great extinction events of the past, is starting to look feasible in the light of his most recent discoveries made on a field trip.  Reformed gang member, Artie, is now a solid citizen as his beloved wife Suzy is expecting their first baby.  Dr Kathy Morrison works at CDC, the national facility where the entire world’s known pathogens are stored and studied.   These four people are ripped out of their everyday lives and find themselves struggling to make sense of it all when the unthinkable happens.  And goes on happening…

This doomsday tale of changing times and humanity’s attempts to adjust has an old-fashioned feel about it.  The constant swinging between a very wide cast of characters, all told in third person POV, harks back to Michael Crichton’s The Andromeda Strain in atmosphere and treatment.  Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing.  However, in order to make this particular storyline structure work, the author has to tread a very fine line between keeping up the pace, without confusing his reader with a dizzying procession of characters and events.  Bohacz manages not to confuse, but at the expense of the narrative drive, particularly in the first section.  I felt he could have shed many of the early episodes without losing much of the plot, while gaining pace and keeping the key characters to the fore.

But as the narrative picks up and the main characters clearly emerge from the incidental clutter, the science fiction aspects of the storyline gripped me sufficiently to keep me engrossed for the duration.   Once he gets into his stride, Bohacz’s depiction of the despair and chaos as civilisation crashes and the differing reactions of his characters are entirely plausible; as are the more extreme edges of his hypothesis accounting for the main extinction events that have dotted Earth’s history.   Bohacz’s writing style isn’t flashy.  There are no shafts of sharp humour, or displays of wordplay.  But his painstaking, detailed accounts of the changes afflicting his main four protagonists are riveting and horrifying in equal measure.

After a sticky start, this book manages to do what all the best sci-fi does – provide a thought-provoking, alternative viewpoint on the business of existence.  I recommend you give it a go.

8/10