Reviewed by: ?wazithinkin
Genre: Space Opera / Science Fiction / Epic Fantasy
Approximate word count: 25-30,000 words
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“Noah Mullette-Gillman was born in Montclair, New Jersey. He spent his childhood there, as well as in the town of Manly, Australia, and the woods of Upstate New York. He earned a multidisciplinary degree in Philosophy and Creative Writing at Bard College in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York.”
Mr. Mullette-Gillman is also the author of Luminous and Ominous, The Dead Have Ruled Earth For 200 Years, Magic Makes You Strange, The Confessions of Zeuspater, and a mythological short story The White Hairs.
“Barely finding his feet amid a new reality in a new galaxy, Charlie Daemon must investigate the mystery of his planet and starship, the U.U.S. Shamballa, a crew made up of the greatest historical figures of the 22nd through 29th centuries, and discover if they are alone in the Universe.”
In this episode, past relationships are further explored as well as new worlds. Our crew is off to find more fuel reserves for the U.U.S. Shamballa. The world they find is a frozen planet with curious creatures and strange properties. As such they can’t stay to do the actual mining themselves so they employ their robot forces to do the work. Mullette-Gillman has quite an active imagination and employs it well here.
Captain Daemon makes some personal advancements and further exploration of another city on U.S.S. Shamballa is explored. Wu Gwei goes into fight mode when he makes an assessment of a situation − he was a war lord in his previous life. Daemon has to exert his position as Captain to shut him down. Crew member Kalligeneia Athanos’ past life is examined more closely and we learn her history. I am enjoying these flashbacks into each crew member’s life.
Tension is ratcheted up a notch when the crew wonders if they have a traitor on board when alien visitors show up and the shields of the U.U.S. Shamballa have been lowered for them to enter. There is a bit of a cliffhanger at the end of this section of the story. Nayara Borges is still unaccounted for and I am getting tired of hearing about Amber. She is Charlie Daemon’s girlfriend who died in the last epic war before Daemon materialized on the U.S.S. Shamballa.
I’m not sure I approve of these serialized editions of stories many authors seem to be leaning towards. Reading the four episode bundle was fine, but reading one novella with a partial story at a time is taxing. I want more story. I may have to wait for the bundles to come out before reviewing. I feel like certain story arcs should be completed with no cliffhangers between segments of a story. It’s a personal thing with me and I was tempted to remove a star.
A small number of proofing errors.
Rating: **** Four stars