Infinite Invaders

Invaders from the Infinite
by John W. Campbell Jr. (1961)

Purchased as part of a Kickstater Campaign for Campbell’s ‘Frozen Hell’.

Claimed to be: a veritable odyssey of the universe, exploring world after world and uncovering cosmic secret after cosmic secret. Here is a classic novel of super-science that may never be surpassed!

I have read novels that feature a glance and hand wave to science before, but this has got to be the worst. In 1961 the space race had begun, Einstein has published his Annus Mirabilis papers (1905).

But most of this appears to have bypassed the author. While crammed with info-dumps and dubious science, it also seems to forget about characters and plot. Little explanation is given of the characters before jumping from world to world with little explanation.

I just didn’t get what was supposed to be going on and soon lost interest.

 

 

Cockoo 5

Cuckoo Series 5

As luck would have it, just as I was finishing series 4, series 5 dropped into Netflix.

Series 5 introduces Ken’s long lost sister, Ivy. Played by Andie MacDowell as a rich brat American who’s husband has been caught in a ponzi scheme. In the first episode she is left broke and on the doorstep of Ken’s house. She makes it to Steve’s place and from there she causes chaos to the family.

Unfortunately for Grey Davis she has displaced him at the top of the cast. It’s still outrageous and funny, with more farce and slap-stick humour than before.

 

Alien Heat

An Alien Heat
(Dancers at the End of Time #1)
by Michael Moorcock (1977)

Paperback Edition Cover

Another hardcover book that has sat on my shelf for decades but discarded during the switch to digital.

There is no doubt that Moorcock has an imagination. This is conveyed clearly through his descriptive prose. He effortlessly switches his characters through colourful environments.

The trouble is that after a few chapters it becomes evident that there isn’t much of a story here. It feels more like a series of sketches.

Moorcock has done better, his ‘Behold the Man’ (1980), read in 2010 I rated a 4/5. His Elric series is better known and may prove to have a story to tell.

 

Hardcover I owned

 

An alternative cover
Another Cover

ST:D 2.14

Star Trek Discovery 2.14
(Series 2 finale)

Ethan Peck as Spock

This is just a big battle with Section 31. Lots of nice CGI to look at, unfortunately much of it lacking in logic.

Eventually Burnham works out that she has to travel to the past and send the five signals that led them to this point.

The show butts up with it’s main problem; as it is set in a pre-TOS era, it has to preserve the ship and many of the characters. So right from the start we know the ship will survive, which removes a lot of the tension.

Alternative Opinion 1

Alternative Opinion 2

 

Cuckoo 4

Cuckoo Series 4

This continues the plot and characters of the previous series. There is more for the son Dylan as he goes to University. But the daughter Rachel doesn’t know what to do.

Again this is more in the farce genre, to great  success !

TruthSeer

TruthSeer
(Truthseer Archives #3)
by Mike Shelton (2018)

 

The TruthStone has been a heavy weight for Shaeleen to bear, but she must continue to gather all the stones of power and restore them to their original glory – how, she is not quite sure.


The final part wraps everything with a bow and marriages.

It’s all very exciting and our hero escapes any damages with not even a scratch. This is probably to be expected, but given the power Shaeleen accumulates, it would have been nice to see it change her… maybe a bit to the dark side. But despite all the events happening within a year (she is 15 at the ens) she remains unchanged.

Still, it’s a well written at at times exciting story.

 

TruthSpell

TruthSpell
(Truthseer Archives #2)
by Mike Shelton (2018)

 

Sent to find Princess Diamonique to prevent a civil war, Shaeleen travels with her brother, Wizard Protector Cole, and her friend, Orin. But her journey veers off course when she discovers an evil shadow power threatening the magic of Wayland.


The second of the trilogy is better than the first. The stakes are higher and there is more action. So while it still fits into the young adult genre, things are a bit more intense and the story more involved. The ending leaves you wondering how the story will be resolved.

 

TruthStone

TruthStone
(Truthseer Archives #1)
by Mike Shelton (2018)


When fifteen year old Shaeleen unexpectedly is given a TruthStone, every lie she hears or tells causes her immense physical pain. As she struggles to control her new power and curb the pain, she learns a powerful truth that could thrust an entire continent into civil war. She must choose: reveal the truth and stop the pain – or sacrifice her own well-being to protect her kingdom.


This was purchased from Amazon for a dollar on a whim. It’s definitely young adult fantasy. The prose is easy to read and has a nice flow. Set is a pre-industrial age with magic, technology and a very modern outlook.

The story is centered around a young girl who is thrust into the limelight. There is nothing gritty, depressing of violent about the story and tone. In some ways this detracts from the story, meaning that there is less at stake for the characters. Sometimes the  magic seems to evolve to suit the story.

It feels light and adventurous, rather than deep and weighty. Even the  ‘evil’ characters aren’t that threatening.

At the end of the first book, it just seemed natural to move onto the second….

Cuckoo 3

Cuckoo Series 3

In this series it is clear that the writers have gone from comedy to farce. The characters do stupid things to move the plot and jokes along. With a new baby there is scope for a lot of domestic accidents and almost everything possible is included.