Tuesday, December 17, 2013

REVIEW: Have Wormhole, Will Travel by Tony McFadden

Australia gave us Mad Max in a post apocalyptic world. Now there is Tony McFadden with a new twist on history and physics and vampires. By the way, there is no such thing as vampires, just aliens who gave Bram Stoker the idea for vampires. Or at least that is the way the story goes.

Take two tall, pale-skinned, and very strong aliens who have been on Earth for 400 years as advance scouts for their own planet 20 light years away, add 3 very lovely and unusual fan girls convinced Callum and his partner are vampires, throw in a mad scientist who thinks he can create wormholes and you have a world on the brink of destruction. It seems Callum's bosses back on his home planet are ready to direct a neutron star through a wormhole in Earth's direction if they can conceivably create wormholes to be used as a means of going to the home planet to steal their resources and wage war. They have destroyed other emerging technological societies and they are ready to do it again. Their only problem is Callum who has come to see Earth as a lovely planet to spend the rest of his very long life on -- and he is strongly to attracted to one of the fan girls, the martial arts teacher and fitness buff who owns her own business and just happens to be living with the not so mad scientist. He has a choice to make and he is running out of time. Earth's slated for destruction.

Tony McFadden uses Sydney, Australia and the surrounding areas to set her story, except for a few quick trips to the home planet quarantine chamber, and creates not only a plausible story but one that is fascinating and full of science and adventure. Who knew aliens have been watching us right here on our own planet and have quashed some of the best technological advances all to keep us in the Thules? (That's toolies to the uninformed.)

The scientist has a brilliant mind and and an ego to match and Jackie, the martial arts teacher and studio/dojo owner, is not as stupid as the scientist thinks. The other two fan girls are not quite so clueless either and they provide some of the humor and gum for the works. Three aliens, the ones on planet, are part of the story, but so is the elder in the quarantine chamber on the home planet and he is a bit one-dimensional as all villains and elders entrenched in a certain way of thinking and doing things. Add in an autocratic administrator of the university and a general of the armed forces with their own single-minded goals and you have a corner of the world where things get interesting quickly. McFadden hasn't stinted on the science either, even if there isn't enough of it to help anyone make a wormhole with cold fusion to power it. A genius or two might come up with the means to take us off planet and explore the universe with just those clues.

Have Wormhole, Will Travel is an inventive, funny, serious, and eminently fast read that satisfies and astonishes in equal measure. Aside from the one-dimensional characters, I'd say the book is just the beginning of a new friendship for a whole new bunch of science and fiction buffs, and the odd fan boy/girl. Well done. Now, when will Tony McFadden write something else I can devour? I really liked this modern urban science fiction as much as I enjoyed Mad Max.

No comments: