Somewhere within every review that I write of Eric Brown’s work usually appears a statement that he has [yet again] failed to disappoint me and this collection of eight interlinked short works is yet another superb example of this. This book showcases an author who writes consistently good science fiction and the stories overflow with so many of the ingredients which make up supremely entertaining yarns.
Project 77 is a collaboration between extremely talented professional artist Martin Deschambault and the publishing division of ArtStation, a showcase platform for games, film, media and entertainment artists. The quality of the artwork is second to none, to say the very least, the pieces merging together superbly giving the reader a tantalizing glimpse into a supremely fascinating universe.
This is a fun read, a hard sci-fi story with a solid chunk of humor and cynicism that is a supremely enjoyable read. The writing style is excellent, flowing well and it works great within the realm of this story which is a multiple first-person account of self-replicating probes multiplying and exploring the galaxy. The style is similar to many other contemporary science fiction authors and it particularly reminded me of John Scalzi, a good thing because he is one of my favorite modern authors. Scalzi’s sarcastic wit is something to behold and Dennis E. Taylor seems to be cut from the same cloth in the story-telling sense anyway. I certainly encourage any Scalzi fan to give this a try.
Another great installment of this exciting space opera trilogy from one of the genre’s finest exponents. It continues the series immediately from where The Dark Between the Stars left off, and gives further truck-loads of the same fast-paced action and bigness which are hallmarks of Anderson’s epic stories.
Like the previous books, for a kick off we’re given a decent story recap which is a great feature of the series, one of the key things which make these books so readable. You can come back into it after some time away and quickly pick up the story again, brought back up to speed with key events and plot elements that jog the memory sufficiently to enthusiastically get right back onto the roller coaster.
Yeah, this was okay, actually quite a cool take on the alien first contact scenario where technical plans for some alien technology are discovered within an obscure UFO book. Some enlightened folk see these plans for what they really are and set about finding out the source of said plans and implementing them.
If I imagine a 2017 version of a sci-fi magazine in the vein of golden-era publications such as Amazing Stories or If, then it would contain stories something like this one. It’s an excellent reminder of why we read this sort of science fiction: it’s fun!
What makes a science fiction story a space opera? Well, it needs to take place in space obviously, though not necessarily all of the time. Hanging out solely in an arcology on a climate-blasted Earth, or even in a domed city on Mars, doesn’t cut it. Actually, the more space the better; though there are certainly exceptions, a good space opera should span a galaxy or two, or at least a solar system. And an opera has to be grand and dramatic –battling empires, invading aliens, mysterious ancient technology, and grand, sweeping story arcs.