Monday, November 24, 2014

Under a different genre

I came out of my reading zone again for a switch to Sci-Fi. I have never really been a fan of the genre, and I feel that to usually be the case with readers. You either love elves or aliens. For me, it has always been the fantastical creatures and races of this possible world. A time long forgotten where there was so much more. For others, the mystery of the world yet explored and discovered attracts their imagination. I have enjoyed parts of the sci-fi world because in the end I am an overall nerd. I've watch Star Trek and Star Wars after all. But, ultimately, when I walk into a book store, I go to the fantasy shelves to pick up that 600 page exhausting looking tome of epic greatness. This galley made me think about heading to the sci-fi aisle for a change.

Under Different Stars by Amy Bartol

I have already pointed out I do not favor the Sci-Fi genre, nor will I shun it. My lack of interest in the subject comes from the arbitrariness that comes from creating galatic races from a completely unknown medium. That cannot be easy to create, so I will give authors their credit for even attempting. The ouch moment for me in Under Different Stars came from the dialogue of the Etharian race. Kricket  has a very Douglas Adam-esque translation device injected into her mind as soon as she arrives to Ethar; however, there are some words that seem to not be uploaded to the translator because the author sprinkles new terms arbitrarily throughout the dialogue. And there you have my pet peeve of Sci-Fi. It makes no sense when the they invent something. It just is because they are aliens. Ouch.

I will admit that it did not detract from the fact the story is good. The plot arc is very intriguing, and I continued to read to find out what came next. It is kind of a Stockholm syndrome love story, but very sweet and simple. There are five sects of a race that has been horrifically devastated by plague. After finally starting to bounce back in population, the inevitable vie for power has begun. Standard topic for this kind of book, but I found it managed to make its own impression. There is a nice coming of age story with Kricket beginning to develop as an Etharian when she thought for the longest time she was human. I predict she is going to break the mold with her revolutionary ideas. 

I enjoyed the overall reading experience. The story moved along very well, despite feeling like I ran into a brick wall headlong at the ending. It is an excellent addition to the YA market and made me give some new consideration to the Sci-Fi genre. I will certainly be moving onto the next book.

The revised 2nd edition will be available next week, December 2. I advise getting a copy at the fantastic rate of $3.99 for digital.