I am a moderator over at SFFWorld.com. I first joined the forum to participate in the Writer’s forum contests. They were for-the-fun contests/workshops. Everyone who participated wrote a story, voted on all the stories, and offered their thoughts. It’s a great little community of writers and I produced a lot of material while I took part in the contests.
One month, a new guy joined us. His story was great. It was well written, poignant and stirred the emotional pot. But it was horror. At least, it was horror to me, and I didn’t like it. I liked it in the sense that it was a very well written story, but the content just wasn’t my tea. Though I knew this “new” guy had written books and had self-published them, that little story put me off for about two years.
Recently, he had a special, offering the first book in his Molly Fyde Saga for free. So I snagged it. What a charming book Molly Fyde and the Parsona Rescue is! Though young adult fiction is also not my cup of tea, it is definitely not horror and I really enjoyed it. My review is below. The APOV thoughts to follow.
Set in a future when space travel is the norm, trade between alien races is thriving, and a long-drawn out war between humanity’s sworn enemy, the Drenards, is well established, our heroine is thrown into a family mystery that will put her life on the line – several times. We soon find out that not every corner of the star-charts is safe when Molly, along with her boyfriend Cole Mendonco, begin a journey across the galaxy to recover her father’s space ship – the Parsona.
Along the way, Molly picks up a few strays that help to fill out her thin crew, and we encounter new races with starling perspectives than our own. The mystery of her father’s disappearance deepens as does the danger when she realizes she may be on the wrong side of the Navy’s arsenal. At each step she takes towards recovering the only thing left to her from her parents, she encounters betrayal and corruption, slowly stripping away her trust and naivety. She tackles each challenge with perseverance, compassion and her wits.
The first in a three part series, Molly Fyde and the Parsona Rescue is a fun, quick read. Filled with lots of action, and a little bit of romance, a young adult reader transitioning to more adult material will find a lot to like, and maybe love, about this book. Molly Fyde’s character feels real and immediate. Her dilemma is touching, and I found myself rooting for her the entire time as she struggles with what is the right thing to do.
With that said, there were a few times during the book where I had to turn up the suspension of disbelief by a factor or two. Our two main protagonists are in their late teens, and some of their antics would have swamped someone with far more training and experience behind them. There were also a few times in the book where the point of view was switched in a seemingly indiscriminate manner that had me re-reading a couple of passages.
Regardless of the few faults, I completely enjoyed this book and would recommended it to anyone who likes their science fiction packed with action and a bit of mystery.
Because this is the first of a series, I’m not sure where the story will eventually go, but for me, this particular story had a most refreshing trait: no gods. Yes, the characters occasional say “Oh my god” or invoke the word ‘god’, but it is entirely within the realm of what a teenager would say with no thought to what the word ‘god’ meant. Other than those verbal slips, the entire book really had nothing to do with religion, God, a god, many gods, magic, or anything else that might be construed as any of those things. It was really nice to immerse myself in a world with no god, and just delve in the very human emotions that drive us to do one thing or another.
Of course, I might be wrong and missed some subtle (or not so subtle) references, but it did put to mind what a wonderful thing it would be to live in a world or time with no religion.
- Hugh Howey (atheistquill.wordpress.com)