Adam La Rusic
Adam La Rusic is, in order of profitability, an engineer, musician, writer, soccer coach and cave explorer. When not eking out an existence in the bowels of the Canadian federal civil service, Adam likes to hang out with his wife and two small children in North Vancouver, British Columbia.
on Sep. 26, 2012
In this supernatural mystery, author Wanda La Claire gives us a thinking person's heroine in Ann LePage, far from the shrieking buxom bimbo of the B-movies. When Ann finds her best friend hideously murdered, she sets in motion a chain of events that tears her life from its moorings in Vancouver, carrying the adventure to old Europe. Pursued by forces she does not understand, she slowly pieces together her own predicament and past, and unveils a shadowy realm of otherworldly creatures.
La Claire eschews the gorefest and tired tropes of many horror offerings, preferring instead to let the camera linger on the emotional damage wrought by violent death, to good effect. I particularly enjoyed the mystery element of the book; La Claire handles the suspense tactfully, never revealing any more than the reader has to know, so that our eyes are opened at the same time as LePage's.
All in all, an effective, intriguing and highly readable first novel. I'm looking forward to the sequel.
Jupiter Rising - The Columbus Protocols
on May 21, 2013
"Jupiter Rising: The Columbus Protocols" follows the exploits of a small multinational force around Jupiter engaged in antagonistic first contact with an alien species.
MacUisdin uses his own naval background to good effect, showing a mastery of battle strategy and tactics. There's no sci-fi magic here--vehicles have to stop for fuel, use low-tech laser arrays and torpedos, and search vast swaths of empty space for single targets. Rations are bad, the ships are beat up, the crew are sleep deprived and pressed to the limit of endurance in cramped quarters. It's war--ugly, vicious, characterized by a regimented existence interspersed with lightning moments of intense adrenalin.
MacUisdin's characters are driven by past failures, internecine rivalries and the terrible pressures of military command. It's a far-flung, fractured force, tasked by a distant Earth with stopping a technologically superior force. MacUiusdin shows a particular gift for complex intercultural relationships and his gift of the vernacular and cultural idioms is sublime.
MacUisdin's has a talent for confronting the reader with the immediacy of combat--the smells and sounds, and the slow rise of fear as inevitable combat approaches. You will feel like you are in the cramped confines of a ship in battle.
Tautly plotted, the book courses through to a crackerjack ending.
If you like military, near-future science fiction with a driving plot and complex character development, this book will leave you wanting more.