Thursday, March 20, 2014

Book Review: The Epherium Chronicles: Embrace by T.D. Wilson

The Epherium Chronicles: Embrace (Book 1)
By T.D. Wilson
Publisher: Carina Press
Published: Mar. 3, 2014

Amazon Synopsis:

Hope. Captain James Hood of the Earth Defense Forces remembers what it felt like. Twenty-five years ago, it surged through him as a young boy watching the colony ships launched by mega-corporation Epherium rocket away. He, like so many others, dreamed of following in the colonists' footsteps. He wanted to help settle a new world—to be something greater.

Then came the war...

Hope. During years of vicious conflict with an insectoid alien race, it was nearly lost. Though Earth has slowly rebuilt in the six years since the war, overcrowding and an 

unstable sun have made life increasingly inhospitable. When mysterious signals from the nearly forgotten colony ships are received, Hood is ordered to embark on a dangerous reconnaissance mission. Could humanity's future sit among the stars?

Hope. Hood needs it now more than ever. As secrets about the original colonists are revealed and the Epherium Corporation's dark agenda is exposed, new adversaries threaten the mission, proving more dangerous to Earth than their already formidable foes…

Book Links
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My Thoughts:

The Epherium Chronicles: Embrace is good old science fiction, or as T.D. Wilson himself calls it, “space opera – a lot like Star Trek, Babylon 5 or Star Wars”. Captain James Hood is given command of the Armstrong, the newest addition to the new Akita class Dreadnaught space ships.  Their mission, kept secret from the crew until the ship was under way, was to “make contact, identify and deal with any threats, and protect the colonies until reinforcements arrive.” These colonies were colony ships that had set out from earth 25 years ago and had only recently sent back word of their arrival at their destination. In the intervening years Earth had been at war with an Alien species, the Cilik’ti. Peace had been brokered six years ago but if the Cilik’ti detected the new colonies, hostilities would likely start again, beginning with the wiping out of the fledgling colonies.

Since the original colony ships were sent out with heavy investment of the Epherium Corporation, Captain Hood is obligated to take along with him a small team of Epherium executives who want to come along and see how their investment is doing.

It was a delight to read. Mr. Wilson did an excellent job of introducing each of the many characters involved in this large crew. There were many people to keep track of, and like a movie we found out a bit about the character of each one as we went along. To some this may have made the story seem a little slow at the beginning, but it was all part of the character development and as this is just the first in a series of books, I thought it was an excellent way to start as we will be fully invested in each of the main characters. The introduction of each of the main characters in this way also made it easy to keep track of who they were and remember their roles.

I particularly liked Maya Greywalker, the Armstrong’s genetically engineered Chief Security officer. While she may seem emotionless, it is more that she is rather aloof, keeping her feelings guarded, unsure as to how humanity in general will accept her as a genetically altered human with enhanced skills. She has one startling feature that sets her apart from all the other crew aboard the ship: her brilliant blue eyes.

Barely before the Armstrong gets out of dock the action begins. While Captain Hood had free rein in choosing his staff, already there are mysterious happenings aboard the ship, including several murders. Add to that a strange ship shadowing them and several twists and turns in the plot and you’ve got a fascinating story that will keep you entertained all the way through the book.

I found The Epherium Chronicles: Embrace to be well written and entertaining. There were a few proofreading/grammatical errors in the text, but not enough to totally distract the reader from the story. The end of the book leaves you with enough of a conclusion to feel satisfied that you’ve come to the end of the book, but still wanting more and looking forward to the next installment. It’s a good place to stop.

There were a few words of mild profanity in the book, but overall the language was fairly clean. Kudos!

Science fiction fans, or should I say “space opera fans” will fully enjoy Epherium Chronicles: Embrace thoroughly. I highly recommend it. I could even see it as a movie. I gave it 4 stars out of 5!

Thanks to the author for providing a copy of the book in exchange for a fair and honest review. A positive opinion was not required. All thoughts are my own.

About the Author:

T.D. Wilson was born in 1968 in Troy, Ohio and has been an avid fan of science fiction and fantasy from a very young age. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering and has supported the systems and networks in several of the largest Supercomputing data centers in the world.

His early thirst for adventure in reading began as he explored many of the great stories of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. As his reading scope expanded, Mr. Wilson was fascinated by strange new worlds from the magical of Middle Earth and Narnia to the far reaches of space in Star Trek and Babylon 5. As a science fiction author, he strives to integrate a realistic flavor to his worlds by providing his readers a feel for the real science in science fiction. A topic he loves to discuss with his friends and readers.

 Mr. Wilson still lives in Ohio with his wife and their two sons.

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