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on 30 June 2014
Another of the series and as others have said probably best appreciated as a stand alone as the formula needs refreshing and the grammar and spelling are awful. You could almost be reading any of them. Reading the whole series is NOT necessary.

Arrive Admiral-Fixit, can do anything, timed just as everyone is about to breath vacum or be blown up. Queue lots of childish disinterest from the powers that be (yeah, right! That disinterested and you'd be dead already!) with attempts to space him for threatening their ego, arrest him for helping and he finally wins them over. Of course ship officers are just drivers and are incompetent and/or tech illiterate (yeah, right again?!?) only a faithful chief somewhere failing to cope at last, who needs rescuing from a terminal crisis, appreciates him. A sudden crisis or change of tack well into the books seek to give book a bit of plot depth but the writing is clumsy and superficial.

The world making is thin to say the least. Characters are 2-D, reactions are predictable (unless frankly unbelievable), personalities are stereotyped and frankly there's not much here to merit buying it. The first one was an interesting premise, so got my 4 stars; the others have since got progressively worse. 2 stars for this is charitable. Even for the young teen market (no F bombs), a poor offering.The tech illiteracy also grates: Beyond the Oort cloud of a solar system is not a place where solar panels or sun side and shade side have any meaning: The science understanding is less than schoolboyish.

The grammar (urgh!) : One moment it's narrated 3rd person past tense, then next sentence (or even later in the same sentence) third person present. It looks like it was done in a hurry and can not have been proof-read (or if so, any notice taken). It makes for a more than slightly schizo read!

Getting more disappointing, but not as bad as the Jethro spin off series (1 star) I've not finished it, I've too much else better to do.

Of the kind, there's alot of good stuff out there: I have to recommend Moon, McCaffrey, Ringo, Weber(Honour), Drake, Lee&Miller (Liaden), Lowell (Clipper), LE Modesitt, GS Paul (Helfort), Scalzi and Bujold (Vorkosigan). They are the pros of the business. This is amateur pap, not thought through, trivial story telling, tossed out in a rush: Keep the day job, this is borderline bad publicity for the whole concept amazon self publishing! Sorry to have wasted my time on a kindle sidetrack!
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on 22 October 2013
This series is not bad and worth the small price to get it. The story line - rebuilding civilisaation by engineering - is a slightly different take on dystopian futures. There is some engineering rather close to 'magic' but that is what you expect in sci fi. The characters could be better rounded and more real, but they are not bad, and the story line carries them forward.

However, the editing is dreadful, and gets increasingly poor as the series goes on. Most noticeable is the fact that the tense changes from the present to the past by paragraph or in paragraph. One feels perhaps that the author wanted to write in the present tense, but wisely changed his mind. Alternatively, he drafts scenes in the present tense, as if he is writing scenes for a screen play, and then cuts and pastes them into the rest of the narrative without noticing or checking the change of tense. It is distracting, and frankly, the sign of a lazy author.

I can cope with spelling mistakes, or words that the spell checker has missed due to similar sounds for different meanings, for example 'you're' when it should be 'your'. However, I get really angry when a simple sentance has a singular subject but a plural form verb, eg 'he go to get the spanner'. This sort of mistake borders on illiteracy. I know grammer is not well taught these days, but an author should be able to notice this elementary, primary school error.

For lthe above reason, I have to give this novel a lower rating than it deserves.

Get your act together, Mr Hechtl.
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on 25 October 2013
Oh dear, this series of the Wandering Engineer promises so much and indeed delivers a lot and is pretty good value - some errors that a decent proof reader would get rid of and a tendency to change storyline without giving the reader a clue but over all the book is well written.

Having said that - it's all getting a bit repetitive. Incomes the engineer, arriving just in time before the ship/station/planet collapse; fixes things that have not worked for ever, the engineers love him; the management are suspicious of his motives. Eventually the management run him out of town realising as he goes over the horizon that he was actually a good guy and they are the poor idiots.

Hopefully at some point by book whenever some of the dots will be connected but I am not sure I've the energy to persevere with the series. A shame as the premise is great.

Should you buy this book? Yes, but it is not standalone you need to read the earlier ones in the series.
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on 19 February 2014
I have not read any of the other stories in this series but really liked this one. The story is really good I could read loads of pages at a time and not get bored. The downside to the book is that there are LOADS of spelling mistakes almost one a page, sometimes parts of the story are also told from one point of view and then it changes to another I.e third person and does not read right.

With these minor corrections made it woul be awesome. I admit I am not the best at spelling and grammar but these were simple ones that should have been picked up.

However I liked the story so much it was right up my street so I have downloaded the next 2.

Overall if you can ignore the spellin errors and concentrate on the story it is very much worth a read.
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on 15 December 2015
The series as a whole is ok but this book is practically unreadable. It changes tense sometimes in the middle of a sentence and usually at least once a paragraph making it slow and painfully frustrating to try and read. It certainly hasn't had even the most cursory proof reading, a real shame as the other books were nothing like this. I can only assume it was rushed and the author didn't bother to read it through afterwards.
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on 3 March 2015
The story is interesting, the characters good, but I had to abandon it because the author keeps jumping from past to present tense for no reason and it just wound me up.

Please get it proof read and re-issue it and I'll give it 5 stars. If you want me to help out, just contact me (alan @ manhoc.co.uk will do it)
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on 3 October 2014
A good fantasy story which will keep you wanting to read more. The writer has picked a story line that will have you looking for the next book and still have a continuation of the story so far. It shows what could happen in our twist futures.
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on 11 November 2014
Our hero engineer, is in action again are his efforts appreciated this time, what would you expect from a bunch of self serving, self-righteous, vindictive petty fools.
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on 13 February 2014
This is the fourth book in the series, I am sorry but I found it very juvenile and repetitive, almost as though the author had run out of original ideas and tried plump the book up with trivial detail. The original concept was good and left huge opportunities which this volume has failed to exploit. If this had been the first one I had read it would also have been the last. I bought volume five at the same time so I hope he has got back to the previous high standards.
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on 1 October 2013
As an avid fan of science fiction there are few books that I won't read to the finish but this was one of them. I got maybe a third of the way through and just couldn't bring myself to carry on.
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