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on July 08, 2011 :
I must say that I was more than pleasantly surprised by Frank's short story.
First half consist of an excellent conversation - nay - a debate on the different points of view on the first piloted mission to Mars. The scene leaves you in kinda of a limbo since you can't really decide which point of view is more valid.
then vigorously kicks in the underplot which takes you to a whole new setting - Frank takes you into a stressed and intense situation, where you only need to follow the effortlessly flowing prose. I also appressiated he didin't overstuff the text with too much sci-fi mumbo jumbo.
crime, sci-fi, deep social commentary - it all comes together by the end to bring a great closing to both plots and you are glad to see protagonist's dream come true.
(reviewed 10 days after purchase)
on July 05, 2011 :
More than a great short story, Mars is a Bummer is a potent social commentary. The genre being secondary to the message, this novella will be enjoyed even by readers who never consider reading sci-fi. The writing is first class and technically excellent. I look forward to more offerings from Frank Severino.
(reviewed 17 days after purchase)