3 out of 4 stars
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A Space Story: The Journal of a Bald Little Alien named Dean Kilmer by Tig Carson is a book in the science fiction genre. It follows the story of an alien, Dean Kilmer, as tries to find his way to Earth.
The book introduces us to the species of aliens who call themselves Jut-Sulkies and live on the planet Terah. The greatest fascination of the Jut-Sulkies is life on Earth, so much so that they have modeled their civilization, on the cities of Earth. The Jut-Sulkies developed an annual tradition where they would send one member of their community on a mission to find a way to Earth, but what started as a tradition of great honor, mutated into a tradition to get rid of the society’s undesirables. Dean Kilmer was one such undesirable who got chosen for this suicide mission, because all those who went searching for Earth never came back. All this is revealed in the first page of the story itself.
The author has not wasted any time in lengthy introductions of the characters. The book is written in the form of a journal, as can be understood from the title of the book. Dean Kilmer always fantasized about life on Earth and to him the search for Earth was not a suicide mission. To aid him in his quest, he has to tail an Earthling, who is one of the most feared creatures in the galaxy. Fortunately for him, even though his ship and wig do not survive their collision with this earthling, his life is spared and he is accepted by the Earthling on her ship. From here follows the space adventure of a human, a robot and a bald alien.
A Space Story is a fast paced story where the prime characters move speedily across the galaxy and encounter different planets and aliens, some friendly and some not. The idea of writing the novel in the form of a journal is quite impressive. Also, there are a few comic illustrations in the novel which will interest the young readers. The best part of this story is its humor component. It is not the immensely hilarious kind where the reader would be laughing out loud the entire time, but it is funny all the same. For example, the Jut-Sulkies trying to comprehend the art of sarcasm or the pondering over questions like, “How does Santa know who is naughty or nice” or “Who, in fact, let the dogs out?” Another example is when the robot is learning the English language and explaining the meaning of words like ‘happy’, ‘frustration’ or ‘fun’. These moments clearly steal the show in the story.
The author does not spend much time in giving a background story to most of his characters. Some of the characters are just there. There are several sub-plots in the book which keep the reader intrigued and disentangle themselves towards the end of the book. Though the book is fast paced, with Dean hopping from one adventure to the next, it got frustrating for me in some parts of the book where I felt that the story was just dragging on and it kept on adding newer aliens unnecessarily. It made me feel, sometimes, that the story is actually written in space, because there was no proper beginning or end.
The book will appeal to readers of all ages, especially those interested in the space variety of science fiction. There are some places where the book engages with emotions like courage and pride in being who you are. The book is funny, quirky and quite imaginative. I rate it 3 out of 4.
A Space Story
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