Thursday, March 5, 2015

Farmhand, by Liliania Begley (Cedar Sanderson)

For some reason, the authors over at Mad Genius Club think it's funny to mess with me. They KNOW that I like to read military science fiction, hard scifi, and wonderful things like Monster Hunter International

So what do they do?
They write (gulp) girly romance stuff. With blue flowers on the cover.
So, my dear, dear Cedar got the review she deserved from me. Now, SHE gets to hide behind a pen name, but I must use my real eyes to read it.
So I decided to get snarky, and I wrote the review as though it were an allegory of the trials and tribulations of the American space program. I used the insane device of arriving at the 'truth' by scrambling the letters of names. I was merciless.
It actually was a pretty good read. But, once you start reading that sort of thing, you wind up drinking tea and crying while you watch Hallmark movies.

5.0 out of 5 stars
A marvelous allegory of space exploration
December 5, 2014
By Pat Patterson
Format:Kindle Edition

On the surface, the story is a modern Western love story, filled with references to horses, ranches, and bunkhouses. There is a trio of very likable characters, two of them wounded veterans, the third the wise and aging father and ranch owner. The kicker is that the farmhand is an extraordinarily beautiful, extraordinarily capable, and extraordinarily wounded woman, named Irina.
This gives us our first clue that all is not as it seems to be. Irina is a distinctively Russian name, and in this delightful allegory, she represents the Russian space program. The father, of course represents NASA, as his four letter name (Gray) reveals. The wounded son, Devlin ( (a)N(d) Lived) represents the tragic experiences of the Apollo 1, Challenger, and Columbia. He is crippled, and in obvious pain, yet he perseveres throughout the book, and finally finds peace as he and Irina join efforts to conquer space. Irina's tragedies are far deeper than Dev's; she is a victim of betrayal; this is a most poignant statement of the Soviet space program, which left cosmonauts abandoned in Mir as the Soviet Union collapsed. Although we have great hopes that space will once again become man's hope for survival and prosperity, still we must face the proxmiring of future launches, represented here by eco-terrorists. This future will truly be a sight for sore eyes, as the author's pen name tells us (Lilania Begley = eyeball ailing). So, we wait with breathless anticipation for the future of space travel to be revealed, although with some trepidation; Bluehills Book = kills blue hobo.

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