Sunday, November 13, 2016

Willful Child: Wrath of Betty by Steven Erikson - Book Review #165


Oh, what fun!

Every once in a while it's good to take a step back and to have a bit of fun with a pillar of the science fiction genre.

I'm talking about Star Trek.  In this book we have a "Federation" and a rogue young captain who has no trouble breaking the rules to accomplish missions to his own satisfaction.

It took me a couple of chapters before I understood the author's voice in this story.  It was a crazy cacophony of geek-speak and twisted references.  Once the plot revealed itself I could sit back and enjoy what Erikson was doing.

Each chapter read like an episode from the series with an over-arching plot line to give it good continuity.

My favourite part of the book was when the crew went back in time old Earth circa 2015, to a comic convention.  This being a complete lift of the movie Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home where that crew went back in time to 1986.

I loved the banter and the observations of life as we know it today.

There is no way to talk about this book without referencing Douglas Adams and the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.  Yes.  It's a lot like that.  I really admire how Erikson was able to twist the Star Trek structures, add ridiculous characters and circumstances and have it make sense. 

Like Adams he was also able to make a serious statement about how we live our lives and to deliver that while making me laugh.  We are dealing with a very smart author here.

This is the second book in a series.  I believe my struggles with the first couple of chapters had more to do with the author expecting the reader to have been there for the first book.  I respect that; when I am reading a series I find the effort writers make to help the first-time reader to be tedious.

I found myself stealing moments to read a page or two and bringing the book along just in case I had a few minutes to dive back in.  Most books I read do not captivate me like this one did.  I had the book with me as if it was my cell phone.

I want to thank Tor for giving me the opportunity to enjoy something so fresh and fun.

Steven Erikson -

Steven Erikson

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