Review: Castaway Planet by Eric Flint

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Publisher: Baen

Publishing Date: February 2015

ISBN: 9781476780276 

Genre: SciFi

Rating: 2.1/5

Publisher Description:Lost in the dark, half a year into their journey to the colony world of Tantalus, Sakura Kimei, her family, and her best friend, the alien “Bemmie” nicknamed Whips, are torn from the safety of their colony ship. In a crippled lifeboat, they had one chance to find a habitable world. But even then, they would find that their apparent salvation was a world of a thousand secrets.

Review: This was a heck of a lot of fun for the first half of the novel. Great movement, some good characterization and despite the too human traits of their alien friend, Whips, awesome alien world building. There are floating continents and a plethora of lethal and amiable alien life.

At about the second half of the novel, the characters begin to fall flat. It started to read like a made for TV movie called “The Brady Bunch-Family Robinson”. There is Sakura, brilliant pilot who has no real experience but she takes them wormhole hopping to a system with a habitable planet. She has all the best ideas and continually sacrifices herself in order to realize her families continued existence. Super Dr.Mom, Laura, that rallies and steadies everyone with measured calm and reason in every dire situation while mending life threatening illnesses with her nanobots. Fug. The oldest sister, Caroline, always reads like a martyr script…”Caroline paler than a ghost, shivering …hand tightened on spear and stepped resolutely into the water wading in with a determined stride….”. Double fug. Melody, the next to the youngest sister is a certified genius, whatever that means. She is sullen, lazy, sometimes caring and always has the answer to everything because she is brilliant. The youngest sister, Hitomi, is a curious little scamp whom is brilliant in her own right. Always getting into trouble, you just can’t stay mad at her when she sniffs and says “I’m sowwy”. The only man is this drone like dweeb, Akira, that takes a backstage to his wife and daughters super egos.

They eventually overcome the planets fierce native fauna and build a pretty posh life there. Because they are all brilliant. The end. But its not the end as the only surviving piece of technology “The Omni” (that is pretty much a portable computer), has updated itself. So someone has arrived in-system. Yay!

This novel went from really good to really bad, really fast. Almost like two different authors wrote separate halves.  

 

 

 

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