Official Review: The crew of the HST DARČEK

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Yvonne Monique
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Official Review: The crew of the HST DARČEK

Post by Yvonne Monique »

[Following is an official review of "The crew of the HST DARČEK" by Robert Marsolais.]
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1 out of 4 stars
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The Crew of the HST DARČEK by Robert Marsolais is a science fiction novel that describes the journey of the converted military freighter HST (High Speed Transport) Darček and its captain, Jadrenko Korošek. Thanks to an alien interface linked to his brain, Captain Korošek had been able to control the ship’s functions and pilot the vessel with only the help of some robots. However, an infection in his brain disables this interface and obliges him to hire a human crew for his next journey. Just before leaving for his next destination, Captain Korošek is forced to take a container with suspicious content on board. Will this container be dangerous to the ship and its crew? Will the HST Darček arrive safely to its destination?

Science fiction is my favorite genre, and this book looked promising. The book cover has a spectacular image. Unfortunately, that is the only positive thing I can mention about this book. As the title suggests, an important part of the story is about the crew. I found it difficult to keep track of all the crew members as names, surnames and nicknames were randomly interchanged. The character development is superficial, which makes it difficult to sympathize with the characters. Some situations were hard to believe, such as the passage in which somebody threatens to shoot the captain, hits him with the weapon, and immediately afterwards starts tending to the wound. On page 173, First Officer Bryon suddenly uses a superpower of which the reader has not been informed previously, nor is explained how he obtained this power. Additionally, I felt that the book did not have enough science fiction elements in it. Although it is clear that the journey goes through space, I found that many of the descriptions were just as applicable to a normal container ship than to an interstellar spaceship.

I felt uncomfortable with the author’s writing style. The author uses short, superficial sentences. According to the information about the author, Robert Marsolais used to write manuals before becoming an author. Maybe that explains his preference for short, concise phrases. He merely informs the reader about the events that happen instead of describing them with imaginative descriptions. I am unsure what the target audience of this book is, but the vocabulary appears to be more suitable for teenagers than adults. Occasionally, I felt that the book had been translated from a different language.

I suspect that the book has not been professionally edited. Within the first 20 pages I already found more than 10 errors. Some errors were consistent throughout the book, such as the use of “though” instead of “thought.” Because of all the reasons I have stated, I give this book 1 out of 4 stars. I am sure that the author put a great effort into writing this book and am sorry for not being able to give a higher rate.

Unfortunately, in its current state, I cannot recommend this book to anybody. Especially science fiction lovers would feel disappointed after reading this book. I would recommend another round of thorough editing, some rewriting, and adding more background information to make the characters come alive.

The crew of the HST DARČEK
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Post by raluca_mihaila »

Thank you for your honest opinion! It is getting harder and harder to come across an original and well-written science fiction book. Maybe the author will find a way to improve the novel. At least the mistakes are easy to fix. Nice work with the review!
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Post by MarianaFigueira »

Such a shame. Thank you for the honest review, I really appreciate that you're being kind as well as fair.
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Post by sssns »

Exploring the comparison of having humans versus robots to crew a ship might have been promising. Too bad the book has many issues. I hope the concerns you highlighted get fixed. Thanks for the honest review.
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Post by NetMassimo »

I remember noticing this novel among the books available for review. I had some reservations, and it turned out to be worse than I thought. Possibly a professional editor might help the author in developing a novel that still needs a lot of work. Thank you for your honest review!
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Post by Saint Bruno »

Sorry that you didn't enjoy the book. I wish the author does the needful. Thank you for the honest review.
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Post by Joy Phill »

More than ten errors in the first 20 page is a lot. Thanks for your honest review.
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Post by kandscreeley »

Like you, science fiction is my favorite genre. This, though, doesn't seem worth my time. You describe its flaws perfectly. Thanks.
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Post by Nqobile771 »

Imagine getting a brain infection! The story is intriguing but I will pass. Thanks for the review.
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Post by Drianie »

The cover of this novel immediately caught my attention too. It's a pity that this book lacks in so many aspects. Your review was open and honest, and I'm sure the author will appreciate your constructive criticism.
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Post by RHD »

It's usually disappointing when a good book comes with a plethora of errors. This one is clearly a pass for me. Thanks for your honest review.
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Post by Ellylion »

I love science fiction, but I guess I skip this one. Thank you for this honest review!
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Post by Mvictoria »

Thank you for your honest review. I think I will take your recommendation and skip this book, even though the plot sounded intriguing. I prefer very descriptive and fully thought-out dialogue and plotlines.
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Post by kdstrack »

I was enjoying your summary of the book and getting excited about the brain interface and the subsequent infection. Hopefully, the author will work on the suggestions you offered. This could be a great book. Thanks for the honest review.
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Post by Sou Hi »

Thanks for your honesty. I understand your reluctance to recommend the book to anyone. It seems there are a lot of issues for the author to resolve than just the grammar errors.
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