Photo: Y.S. Pascal and one of her fans.
Y.S. Pascal is an award-winning author of mystery-thrillers and feature articles, a scientist, and the parent of three wonderful teens. Her first book in the Zygan Emprise Series, Where Angels Fear to Tread/Renegade Paladins won a 2010 Mensa Sharp Writ Books Award. Her mystery thriller, Dead Air, co-written as Linda Reid, won the 2010 Royal Palm Literary Award for Best Suspense/Thriller.
on Sep. 07, 2011 :
Well written, imaginative, creative - all good things. Pascal has written an enjoyable book that took me to another universe and kept me there for the ride.
(reviewed long after purchase)
on Aug. 09, 2011 :
The Zygan Emprise is not one, but two stories: Renegade Paladins and Abyssal Redemption. Which, when you think about it, both of these novels have been released in paperback and set at a much higher price, so getting both ebooks for only $0.99 is some major bang for your buck. Now let's get to the story.
The Zygan Emprise follows Shiloh Rush and William “Spud” Escott in their adventure around the universe, from Earth to Zyga and even back in time. In their adventures, they brush up against significant characters and events in man's history (or prehistory), and the author does it seamlessly. Shiloh, Spud and their friends race to uncover the destructive plans of Zyga's ultimate nemesis, Benedict. As they do, they discover that not all of their friends are loyal and Benedict's plan is more than what it seems. I could gush on about the story, but I don't want to give away any spoilers. It's too good. I had a difficult time tearing myself away from this incredible imaginary world. You'll just have to trust me and make the time to read it yourself.
If I could have any complaints about this pair of novels, it'd be only two, and very minor. I almost feel like I'm picking. At the beginning of Renegade Paladins, it's a little confusing until a few pages into the story. It's just the way that the author has set up the story. It shoots back and forth between a few scenes, and none of it makes much sense until you get a little further in. If you're one of those readers who gets easily confused and gives up, don't. Trust me, it's only a few pages and you'll get it. And believe me, the rest of the story is worth it.
The other complaint I could make is that the secondary characters aren't adequately described. I get that one of them is a giant crab-like being, and one was kind of a cloud something or other, but to tell a good story is to know all the players in that story, and I just didn't know them. I wish the author had given these secondary characters as much love and attention as Shiloh and Spud, or nearly as much. It would've made them all the more real. The storyline is so fantastic, there's so much going on, and introducing these fantastic populations from other worlds, it just doesn't give them justice to not fully describe them.
These two, minor complaints aside, the Zygan Emprise- Renegade Paladins was a wonderful book. I look forward to reading the next one, which fortunately for me, is sitting right here on my ereader.
Updated on 8-9-11.
Okay, now that I have had the opportunity to read Abyssal Redemption, let's get to it. Does anyone remember Ghostbusters II? How about Transformers II? Caddyshack II? Well, as sequels go, Abyssal Redemption falls short of its predecessor, too. That's not to say that it's a terrible read; it's not. It just did not live up to expectations.
Having invested a lot of emotion into getting to know Shiloh Rush and “Spud” Escott in the first novel, I was curious to know where their adventures would take them. I was happy to see that the secondary characters who had been so overlooked in the first novel were much more fleshed out in this one, and I commend the author for having done so.
I don't like to pick on ordinary formatting, but that's one of my major gripes with this novel. There were so many typos it was distracting. In a sense, I feel that this novel was rushed to get done, not only because of the lack of proofreading, but also with the plot. It's just not as complex as the first novel.
However, one thing that the author is very good at, which was also accomplished in the first novel, is putting a different spin on historical events. I really enjoyed the trip back to Golgotha. Without giving up any spoilers, the idea was well-crafted, and may have more than a few devout Christians up in arms.
A great loss is never wanted, but almost always necessary in good fiction. This loss, although a necessary part of the plot, was too great for Shiloh, and I feel that her reaction to it was not believable. She had no real time to grieve. She moved on with her life much too quickly.
These small points aside, I enjoyed reading Shiloh and Spud's adventures, and am curious to find out where they head to next. As series go, this second in the Zygan Emprise left many unanswered questions to pique my curiosity, and I look forward to the next one. Let's just hope it's not like Return of the Jedi.
(reviewed long after purchase)