3 out of 4 stars
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Rynah, a purple-hued, green haired resident of Klanor, barely escapes with her life when the crystal that keeps the planet’s magnetic fields aligned is stolen by her ex-fiance. Her unlikely rescuer is Solaris, a ship designed by Rynah’s grandfather with a mind of its own. Rynah vows to seek revenge. As luck would have it, the ancient writings talk about six crystals scattered throughout the universe and four heroes from the Terran Sector that are destined to unify the crystals into a deadly weapon. And so, the quest begins.
Although dramatic from the first line, Solaris Seethes by Janet McNulty seems to backtrack over the same information several times in an effort to get started. For example, even though the disaster on the planet was caused by the removal of the crystal in chapter 1, I wasn’t clear about what the crystal did until chapter 8. Another instance involved the Terran Sector characters. The reader is given an extremely brief glimpse into the lives of each of the four heroes as they are zapped into the adventure. Much of the same information is repeated as the character does something significant later in the story. When I read the author’s note that mentioned the story had originally been planned as a short story, rather than novel, I could then see how this overlapping of information might have happened. Details were superimposed over existing sections. A good editor could help streamline the storyline a bit, particularly in the beginning.
The setting is otherworldly and would benefit from illustrations rather than Earth-based comparisons written in parenthesis. For example, Rynah dreams about the silky emerald grass and bagoons that lived near her apartment complex. Instead of explaining that a bagoon is a cross between a badger and a raccoon, which sounds like a fairly aggressive animal to me, a small picture would be more interesting. The events that occur in the Junglar Sector would also make fabulous illustrations and add to appeal of the story.
As this book is the first in a series, tantalizing clues are presented, but the exact significance is not shared. I assume that the importance of the amber ring, the purple nanobots carelessly administered and the bronze band will be revealed in a future adventure.
Solaris Seethes by Janet McNulty is fast paced, and action packed, making it an excellent a young adult book recommendation. Rynah, Solaris, and the four heroes bounce from one adventure to another. I rate this book 3 out of 4 stars for good readability and age-appropriate vocabulary use.
I’m sure any teenager into science fiction would be interested in reading Solaris Seethes by Janet McNulty. I enjoyed the story as an adult as well. It was a nice piece of light reading. If you are looking for something realistic, this isn’t the book for you. All things considered, I believe you will enjoy the imaginative escapades found here.
Solaris Seethes (Solaris Saga book 1)
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