Science fiction fans, if you're looking for a book to take you into another world, then you must read The Fireborn Chronicles: Fireborn Found by Mary Andrews.
The Universal Government seems to have all the answers. It allows each planet to decide who its undesirables are and these people are transferred and employed on the Hive Planet. To keep these workers in line, they are provided with an addictive drug that can only be earned by working, thus making these undesirables into the ultimate interplanetary temp service.
Rael Pointe--a newborn implanted with compu-link interface temple plates--had escaped the Hive Planet and was never introduced to the drug. Now, he leads a Dark Ops unit for The Gov and is on a mission to uncover a psionic ring of criminals who have taken control of an important Government Ambassador.
As time goes on, Rael finds out that nothing is as it seems and he and his friends are drawn into a circle of lies and revenge that leads all the way back to Rael's escape from the Hive Planet.
I have to admit that I have never been a huge fan of science fiction novels. I enjoy many of the Star Trek series and movies, Battlestar Galactica, and Buck Rogers in the 25th century, but to sit down and read a book about this stuff doesn't often cross my mind. So, I had a few reservations when the author asked me to review this novel, especially when she told me it was psionic sci-fi. I was like psionic what? But I like to expand my horizons as a writer and a reader, so I agreed.
Now, I am eagerly awaiting the next book in this series.
Mary Andrews is a master storyteller who weaves science fiction elements, well drawn characters, and an outstanding plot into an exciting and suspense-filled story that will completely draw the reader into Rael's world. Just when I thought I knew what was going on, the plot thickened, and new twists and turns led me to new conclusions. And the ending...an unexpected and amazing way to conclude the first book in this series and set up Book II, which is due to be released by Swimming Kangaroo Books in September 2008.
I did something I don't usually do and went to Andrews' website and checked out some of the other reviews posted there. Many reviewers discussed the introduction of the main characters in this novel--which we get in the first three parts--as short stories that helped to develop the characters. The opinions were mixed as if that was a good way to start off the novel. This format actually reminded a bit of The Stand by Stephen King, where the reader is introduced to several different characters and their lives before they all become acquainted with each other.
Overall, I felt this was an excellent way for the reader to get to know each character individually before they became part of the team. The Fireborn Chronicles: Fireborn Found has a tremendous amount happening within its 270 pages, so for someone like me who doesn't read a great deal of science fiction, this format served as a way for me to get a handle on who these people were and what attributes and skills they brought to the team. And for a regular science fiction reader, this format helps to set up the plot that really takes off in Part 4.
I also extend huge kudos to the cover artist. This is one of the most beautiful book covers I have ever seen. The jpg I have posted doesn't do it justice. I couldn't believe how stunning the cover was when I received the book.
Mystery, suspense, and action fill the pages of The Fireborn Chronicles: Fireborn Found. If Andrews' debut novel is this amazing, I can't wait to see what she delivers next!
Title: The Fireborn Chronicles: Fireborn Found Author: Mary Andrews Publisher: Swimming Kangaroo Books ISBN: 978-1-934041-50-5 U.S. Price: $14.99
You can check out my october 2007 interview with Mary Andrews here.