Book Reviews – “A Peace Divided” eBook was published in 2017 and was written by Tanya Huff. Ms. Huff has published more than 30 novels. This is the second book in her “Peacekeeper” series.
I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence and Mature Language. The story is set on a remote world undergoing limited archaeological research. The primary character is former Confederation Marine Gunnery Sergeant Torin Kerr, who is now a warden for the Confederation Justice Department.
A group of archeologists have been taken hostage. Kerr and her team, augmented with a group from the Primacy, are sent to rescue the hostages. It has only been a few years since the long war between the Confederation and the Primacy ended. The joint operation by former enemies is full of tension.
When they arrive on-planet, they discover the group holding the hostages is also made up of both former Confederation and Primary military. They are there driving the archeologists to find a hidden weapon that can be used to destroy the race know as “The Plastic”. The Plastic was responsible for causing the long war between the Confederation and the Primacy. There are many who now want a way to take revenge on The Plastic for all the death and destruction.
Though I enjoyed the 12.5 hours I spent reading this 379 page Science Fiction novel, it seemed a little flawed. I liked the characters and the plot, but sometimes the story was a little confusing. While there being a prior novel in the series, which I hadn’t read, didn’t help, this novel stood pretty well on its own. I thought the cover art was well chosen. I give this novel a 3.9 (rounded up to a 4) out of 5.
My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).
Trailers – The “Justice League” move will premier November 17, 2017. I’m not that huge of a fan of the new DC Universe, but I do like Wonder Woman. It will be interesting to see if this collection of DC superheroes (Wonder Woman, Batman, Superman, Cyborg, Flash and Aquaman) will be able to deliver a memorable viewing experience. The synopsis (from IMDB):
Fueled by his restored faith in humanity and inspired by Superman’s selfless act, Bruce Wayne enlists the help of his newfound ally, Diana Prince, to face an even greater enemy.
Short Films – The short (10:17) science fiction film “Waltz for One” was published to YouTube in August of 2017 by DUST. The synopsis:
A lone astronaut on an endurance mission is forced to cope with an intrusive force which threatens to derail the operation.
During the space race of the 1960’s, the Soviets and Americans were at each other’s throats, vying for a foothold in galactic exploration. Simultaneous to the superpower’s struggle, a wealthy eccentric by the name of Arthur Whitman set out to search for his own stellar glory. His self-financed voyage would see him try to break the record for the longest single-manned space mission, and remain in orbit for 1 week.
This is a story of one man’s struggle against the forces of nature, and the more powerful forces that lay within his own psyche.
The film was originally released in 2012 in 49th commemoration of the longest solo space flight in history. That flight was made by Russian Valery Bykovsky who spent nearly five days in orbit. While I don’t think this is one of the better science fiction films, it does show what might happen with a prolonged isolation.
Short films – The short (8:28) post apocalypse science fiction film “Isolation” was published to YouTube in May of 2017 by iharrup. The synopsis:
Two female soldiers from opposing armies, stranded on a deserted space colony, face the dire effects of isolation. This is the story of how they met…
The film is a little dark, but it is well done and interesting. I would like to see more on their story.
Trailers – “Missions” is a 10-part French science fiction / horror series released on the horror streaming service from AMC, Shudder. The dialog is in French with English subtitles. The primary character is the psychologist for the mission. The synopsis (according to Mashable):
With the funding of an eccentric billionaire, the crew of a manned craft aims to be the first to land on Mars. Much to the dismay of all on board however, just before the culmination of their 10-month journey to the Red Planet, they are made aware of a video sent by a rival ship that has overtaken them and already landed on the planet thanks to a revolutionary engine. The bad news doesn’t end there however, as the tape contains a cryptic warning from the Americans pleading with the crew not to land as something far too dangerous is happening on the surface. After a chaotic landing on Mars, the crew finds a survivor — but he’s not from their rival mission. His name is Vladimir Komarov. He is Russian. And he is the first man who died in space…in 1967.
I’m not a big fan of subtitled films as I find it very distracting to have to read the text. If you have access to Shudder the series began on September 28.
Short Films – The short (4:59) science fiction film “Good Business” was published on YouTube in July of 2017 by Ray Sullivan (@directedbyray). The synopsis:
Humans are selling weapons to aliens on a far off world. The hope is that the locals will kill each other off making colonization easier.
This was an interesting film though not a positive look at humanity.
Trailers – The science fiction thriller “The Shape of Water”, directed and co-authored by Guillermo del Toro, is scheduled to open in December of 2017. The synopsis (from IMDB):
An other-worldly fairy tale, set against the backdrop of Cold War era America circa 1962. In the hidden high-security government laboratory where she works, lonely Elisa (Sally Hawkins) is trapped in a life of isolation. Elisa’s life is changed forever when she and co-worker Zelda (Octavia Spencer) discover a secret classified experiment.
This film may have possibilities. It is already rated at 7.3/10 on IMDB. It was also awarded the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival earlier this year. It will be interesting to see how this one turns out.
Short Films – The short (5:41) science fiction film “Rise” was published to YouTube in August of 2016 by DUST. The synopsis:
It’s us or them.
This is the dark conclusion that humans have reached in David Karlak’s short film “Rise.” In the near future, robots have developed advanced emotional sophistication and their human creators don’t like it. What should have been a simple and violent extermination of artificial life proves harder when a captured robot demonstrates that the human aggressors are biting off more than they can chew.
Another very well done film from DUST. Picking 2017 as the date when the first sentient robot appears is . . . optimistic to say the least.
Trailer – Star Wars – The first trailer for the Star Wars film “The Last Jedi” is out. From what little the 2:34 trailer show, it will be a good movie. I think I need to watch it a few more times though to have a grasp on what is being revealed. The synopsis (from IMDB):
Having taken her first steps into a larger world in Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015), Rey continues her epic journey with Finn, Poe, and Luke Skywalker in the next chapter of the saga.
Looking forward, along with a few others, to the release December 15, 2017!
Short Films – This short (16:24) science fiction film was published on YouTube in November of 2014 by The CGBros. The synopsis:
On a post-apocalyptic Earth, Leila Dawn (Natalie Floyd), is the only human survivor. Raised by Robots after humanity abandoned the planet they destroyed with nuclear warfare, Leila cannot forget her parents nor ignore her yearning to find other organic life. A hunt she sets out on with a Military Unit, Marker (Lex Cassar), leads Leila to discover the reality she’s been denied—a reality that sparks her ultimate quest.
This film is well done and certainly gives you a taste of a much bigger story. This is actually the first 15 minutes of a science fiction TV series proposed by director David Levy.