Thursday, September 5, 2013

Review of Tara Tyler's Pop Travel

 pop travel 3

Pop Travel Delivers Real World Issues in a Sci-Fi Setting

Full Disclosure—I received a copy of this novel free in exchange for an honest review.

I love science fiction. Love it. L-o-v-e i-t. Science fiction is my morning coffee. It is the place my mind goes when the day gets slow or dull. It is what I see behind my eyelids on my daily commute. When I reach into that meditative place; that nominal realm that most writers tap into for inspiration, science fiction spills from my fingertips. I’ve tried to write literary fiction, honestly I have.
I say all this to let you know that I take science fiction very seriously. It is my “wheel-house” so to speak. Having established this I can honestly tell you that the worst thing about Tara Tyler’s Pop Travel is that I didn’t write it myself. I’m jealous. It’s that good. Someone (I refuse to look it up, but it was probably Vonnegut) once said that the best fiction, the only relevant fiction, will reveal truths about humanity. Tyler has created a world in which the frightening implications corporate greed and domestic surveillance come to full reality. Best of all, she’s done it in a way that seems convincingly true to life.

J.L. Cooper is a private investigator hired to look into a recent rash of disappearances. All missing persons are linked to pop travel, a long range transportation device that dominates the travel industry of 2080. The corporate over-bosses of PTI (Pop Travel Industries) know that their device occasionally kills people, but refuse to reveal this over fear of public backlash and a reduction of the bottom-line. To make matters worse, PTI has the support of the FBI who can tap into all web enabled devices to monitor and intercept anyone who tries to uncover the truth. Suffice to say, Cooper has a difficult task to surmount.

Tara Tyler mixes hard science concepts with modern day problems (ah-hem…Snowden). Her pacing is Dan Brown-ish, which I say as a compliment. Any fan of fast-paced science fiction would enjoy this book.   



POP TRAVEL is the way to go!
(at your own risk!)

In 2080, technology has gone too far for J. L. Cooper. He is happily hidden in his simple, secluded life as a private detective in a small town, far from any pop travel laser teleportation stations. Until he takes on a client who insists pop travel made his fiancé disappear.

When Cooper investigates, he finds evidence of pop travel’s deadly flaw, sparking a series of murders, attempts on his life, and threats to his brother. He’d like to pass off the evidence but knows he’s being watched and can’t trust anyone. And who would believe him?

The only way he can save his brother is to fool his observers while looking for a way to expose the problem. He decides to go to the source and confront the Creator of pop travel. On his way, Cooper meets Southern siren, Geri Harper (an undercover FBI agent) who tags along despite his protests. When they reach the Creator, he has plans of his own and leads them on a wild detour.

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Broken Forest- A Review


Full disclosure—I received a free copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review.

I have a confession to make. I’m not a YA fan. I know the genre is prolific and loved, but I’ve never been bitten by the YA bug. Maybe I’m too old, maybe I’m a curmudgeon, or maybe I’m no longer afflicted with the optimism of youth.

Despite my terrible personality fault, I actually enjoyed Eliza Tilton’s Broken Forest. The premise is very YA oriented. A young stable hand, Avikar, undertakes a quest to save his sister, Jeslyn, from kidnappers. Avikar is accompanied by his stout and trusty friend Derrick, who is also Jeslyn’s love interest. Unbeknowst to Avikar and Derrick, Jeslyn has been taken by agents of Lucino, a powerful alien disguised as human royalty.

Avikar and Derrick journey through strange lands, battle magical beasts, make friends, lose friends, develop love interests (or at least Avikar does with the beautiful and fierce Raven), and learn to rely on their own strengths against a mysterious and dangerous opponent.

Like any good YA story, there is violence without too much gore, there is lust without too much explicitness, and life lessons are doled out alongside near-tragedies. As far as I can tell, the primary component of YA fiction is fun, and Broken Forest certainly fulfills this part of the bargain. It’s fast-paced and action-oriented with engaging characters. The last third of this story is particularly engaging.

I highly recommend this story for fans of the genre. 


Hopeless he’ll never be more than the boy who didn’t save his brother, 17-year-old Avikar accepts his life as the family stable boy, trying to forget the past. But when his sister, Jeslyn, is kidnapped, the thought of losing another sibling catapults him on a desperate quest. With his best friend by his side, and using the tracking skills he learned from his father, he discovers Jeslyn has been taken, kidnapped by one Lucino, the young lord of Daath, a mystical place thought only to exist in fables.

And Lucino has plans for Jeslyn.

His shape-shifting brethren feed off the auras of humans, and Jeslyn’s golden hue is exactly what Lucino needs to increase his power. The longer it takes Avikar to reach her, the more entranced she becomes with Lucino’s world, and the harder it will be for Avikar to set her free.
He failed his family once. He won’t fail again.