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I'm a writer and library worker who wears many hats. I believe a good book and a good piece of chocolate are the keys to a happy life.

Friday, March 18, 2011

StarScout Rising: First Trail by Gary Darby

When I first received StarScout Rising: First Trail by Gary Darby I have to admit my thoughts went along the lines of “boy, that’s a thick book” and “jeepers, that’s a creepy cover”. It took me a while to get over my intimidation to find out it was a pretty decent book.
Here’s a little bit about the book from Amazon:
From the last frontier, Space. A must-have, out of this world adventure! Star Scout Rising, First Trail by Gary Darby is a thoughtful, awe-inspiring, and spine-tingling Sci-Fi mystery that follows a young man named Del Baldura during his quest for knowledge, truth, and discovery in the distant future of human and alien kind. This story has it all superb background, surprises, mystery, love, futuristic technological possibilities, bizarre life forms, and a hero trying to make sense of his duty and loyalty, his current leadership responsibilities, and his search for truth about part of his and his family's history. Volume One of a three volume set, Darby hits a grand-slam with this first novel. Smart and thought provoking. Volume Two due out in 2011.

There’s plenty of action and high-interest intrigue in this book. There were moments that made me giggle and others that made me bit my nails. I also liked the mix of characters—old and young, male and female. I liked the way the friends stuck up for each other and stayed together even when it would have been easy to go a different road. Better than that, I liked that the story was clean and unabrasive. There were none of those "icky" bits that you wonder why they really needed to be there in the first place. This is one book you won’t have to worry about handing over to your Sci-Fi loving teen.

What didn’t I like? Eh, there were a lot of different character and subplots going on. I sometimes had trouble keeping it all straight and didn’t get as much closer at the end as I would have liked (yes, even for a series). I should also mention the editing could have been better, but it wasn’t completely distracting. Unless it’s bad enough to hinder my reading I don’t judge a story by how clean the copy ended up being.

I don’t know that you could get a reluctant boy reader to pick StarScout Rising: First Trail up since it is so thick, but I ‘m betting you could hand it to any teen boy who openly enjoys Sci-Fi and not see him for a couple of days as he hides under his covers reading. Hurray for clean reads which cater to teen boys!