2012: NASA’s Curiosity Rover lands on Mars to search for signs of whether microbial life existed on the planet.
2018: The first alien lifeform, a simple wormlike creature is discovered, gripping the world’s imagination.
2022: The first manned mission to Mars begins the longest and most dangerous journey ever undertaken by humankind.
From hundreds of potential candidates, six astronauts from countries around the world are selected to crew the historic mission. Led by Commander Samantha Collins, they must travel across the gulf of interplanetary space, over 150 million miles from home and help. Their mission is to investigate alien life, but what they discover is far beyond what anyone ever imagined…
“Tight, well written and not what I expected.”
Five Star Review on Amazon By Mr Shaun Gibson
Having read the blurb I came into this book expecting a sort of ‘Red Mars’ Lite. Which wouldn’t have been a bad thing in itself. But the book goes way off course, it wasn’t the story I was expecting and considering the number of pages that’s for the better.
Instead of a shallow re-imagining of Red Mars, what we have is tight, well written story that has the bonus of being a very possible future (in terms of the mission itself). The novel is set in a very close future and follows trends and motivations in space travel, including the (to me) unsavoury aspects of ‘selling’ the mission to the public and the careful consideration on the part of NASA and public relations rings too true in our media-centred world.
I enjoyed following the main character. The book has only two minor flaws that taking a star off would be too harsh. The only piece of writing that didn’t ring true was the ‘President’s Speech’, only because a couple of times he mentions the russians as former enemies, a word he’d have left by the wayside in a carefully scripted speech.
The other is the book is too short. A few more view points written in would have added depth and raised the tension higher.
All in all, it was one of the best original pieces of fiction not tied to a ‘big name’ I’ve read in the last year. Well done Mr Brookes!
About the Author
By day I work as a Producer for one of the leading UK independent game developers. I currently live in probably the flattest place in the world in the east of England, although over the years I have lived all over the country. I’ve always been interested in writing it is only recently that I’ve really pushed myself to finish a complete book. That effort has now seen the light of day and I’m looking forward to starting the next book. I’m also an avid reader with Ian M Banks and Terry Prachett being amongst my favourite modern authors. My favourite story of all time is Paradise Lost, a hard read, but a sublime story.