on June 02, 2016 :
Hmm ... the spirits of dead extraterrestrial pilots somehow are in the wreck of their crashed spaceship ... he who has so much imagination to accept such a plot, gets to read an exciting and original story. I award an extra star for the beautiful and historically coherent echoes of the aircraft and weapons development of the early 50s. Makes three stars, "good SF".
Remark: In my system, five stars is reserved for the most important SF of world literature, e.g. "1984" from George Orwell, and four stars for those I consider all-time best, for example Michael Crichton or some novels from Larry Niven.
This leaves three stars for most of really good Indie SF, but as everybody else at Smashworts does rate a SF novel at five stars if he liked it, I was detoriating the average rating of Smashwords authors I like best! So I decided to change my previous reviews, one by one, and repost them without the smashwords rating. Watch out for my rating in the review text instead!
(review of free book)
on April 21, 2012 :
Things about Roswell have always seem a little mysterious at best. I mean cover stories of weather ballons and swap gas are as unbelievable as the various UFO sightime accounts themselves. Anyway, enough for me to take a look at this "true account". If yo add the secrective militay intellegence and the evil aspect of the CIA, then almost anything is beleivable. This first part was good enough for me to want to read the complete series. Try it you'll fing it very entertaining.
(reviewed within a week of purchase)
on July 28, 2011 :
A Willing Suspension of Disbelief
As in any profession, there are different levels of proficiency in writers. There are the two star Dean Koontz’s and Dan Brown’s near the bottom, and then there are the five star Peter F. Hamilton’s and George R.R. Martin’s near the top. This author falls in between which astonished me as I was expecting something of much lower quality from a self-published author—both in content and editing. The editing is very, very good considering the length of this work and presuming the author was responsible for all edits. As I well know, it is damn near impossible to edit your own work. You, sir, are my hero. There are a few typos here and there, and some incorrect punctuation usage, but these detract from neither the author’s story nor the voice he uses to tell it—both of which I found to be superb.
In fact, I enjoyed this first part of the three-part series so much by the conclusion of its tenth chapter that I jumped back online and bought the second and third books while they were still on sale this month.
However, I was very disappointed with one aspect of the book and hence the requirement to suspend disbelief. The “hook,” or the synopsis, the author has written reeled me in like no book has since I was a kid, BUT the story lacks verisimilitude, or the appearance of being true, because it is so incredibly detailed and not consistent with hearsay. I wanted it to be true, I did, but I felt cheated when I realized that it could not possibly be an eyewitness/participant recounting early on. This annoyed me at first, but I couldn’t stop reading the story despite this. Once I let my annoyance go and understood the hook for what it was, I enjoyed the story much more. I would think this could easily be “fixed” by some retooling of the prologue to explain the explicit detail.
For this reason as well as a few “hokey” scenes that left me snorting B.S. and also required a suspension of disbelief, I have deducted one star. Had the author not been, what I would consider, such an excellent wordsmith, I would have gone much easier him.
In closing, I would like to point out that I panicked when I concluded reading the prologue because I thought this would be a story with a heavy religious theme. Why? Because it is pointed out in the middle that the pilot is a “solid, God fearing man” and finishes with “His truth is now ‘out there.’” Rest assured, if you came to the same conclusion as I did upon reading the sample, this is not the case. If you like SF (like me) and have an active imagination and/or are able to suspend belief in lieu of great enjoyment for a great story well told by a great author (like me), buy the book. You will not be disappointed.
Thank you Alan James for a great read! I can’t wait to “burn through” the next two.
(reviewed within a week of purchase)