Into the Black

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As an indie e-publishing writer, it makes my day to come across an indie e-publishing writer who does it well and makes it look good.

Such is the case with the Odyssey One series by Evan Curie.  Like my own books, Currie’s series was told first and foremost as a story.  As his sales and experience grew he had the original story re-edited and released with fixed mistakes.  Oh, there are some things that only a professional human editor will catch.  There is, I think, a line in book two about something like reflexive reflexes that stuck in my mind.  No human editor would miss that.  But those things are minor details.

The great freedom of self-publishing is that it removes the bottleneck.  Sure, a lot of stories get out there that aren’t very good.  I sometimes stay up late at night wondering where I fall on the spectrum, but Evan Curie is the sort of author who proves it can be done and gets me back to my keyboard, typing away.

I lost a day to the first book in the series (something that I don’t do often), Into the Black.  Think Star Trek Enterprise told by David Weber and you won’t be far off.  This is a great mix of military sci-fi and exploration.  The general gist is that North America unites into one big country during World War Three, and when the war is over they turn their new industrial base into a military exploration ship with a theoretical faster-than-light drive.

Then the crew of the Odyssey find out that the universe is a lot less empty than they hoped, and of course, it’s at war.

There is good, solid military fiction here that borrows a lot from well-established genres.  There aren’t any sappy love-plots thrown in just because Hollywood can’t handle a story without sex (Pearl Harbor).  The technology is consistent, and I was delighted in the twist that the North Americans were ahead of galactic civilization in some ways because they were too ignorant to now that some things just couldn’t be done.  The bad guys are a great mix of the bugs from Heinlein’s Starship Troopers and Saberhagen’s classic Berzerker series.

There aren’t very many truly unique ideas in this story, but the mixture is as unique as an artist’s paintbrush.  It was a good read, highly enjoyed, and I’m at risk of losing the weekend to the rest of the series.

But the story is also inspiring.  If he can do it, then maybe I can too… I can go another hour at the keyboard without sleep.

But while I’m at that, check this e-book out.  Highly recommended.

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