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Customer Review

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars YA Mind Spanning SF, 4 Jan. 2013
This review is from: Planesrunner: Book 1 of the Everness Series (Hardcover)
Reviewer: Ken Norman

Planesrunner is a rollercoaster in a panoply of ways. There's influences from everything and everywhere shoehorned into the first part of a series that could run forever. The mood of the story could best be described as an adventure story in the old fashioned sense - it reminded me of the pulp SF books I read when I was young, but none of those books contained the level of detail nor breadth of scope that this does. I looked up the author about halfway through the book, to find that the story has been targeted at the young adult reader. This shouldn't put you off though! It is still an entertaining read from start to end and doesn't shy away from the more adult themes that come up from time to time, though the hardened adults might find it feeling a bit watered down in places.

The adventure revolves around a boy (don't they all) who has to man up and go searching across parallel universes looking for his missing dad. This makes him the Planesrunner of the title. And no, it's got nothing to do with Bladerunner. He encounters girls, nasty politicians, policemen, generally bad people and pawnbrokers, but never gets into serious trouble. Some of the characterisation is a little two dimensional but, in the context of the target audience, isn't much of a big deal, as there is lots of fun looking for just how many big ideas are crammed in here. There are elements of Steampunk, polari, nanotubes, multidimensional mathematics, parallel universes, social networking and Asian cooking. What? Asian cooking? For some reason, our intrepid protagonist is Punjabi. I waited for a specific reason for this to be the case, but couldn't really find one. Maybe I'll find out later in the series.

Overall, a good fun read that won't tax you too much and rolls along like an action film. I hope that the series continues with a bit more grit to suit its aging target audience and stay in line with the age of the characters. Perhaps the author is going to expand on some of the initial themes presented here, or run off into the distance with this years set of big ideas. Victorian-style Airships vs Extreme Weather maybe?
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Location: Birmingham, UK

Top Reviewer Ranking: 68,941