Plagued

Plagued, Book One, a post-apocalyptical e-book copyright and written by Garrison Scott and introducing the series’ protagonist.

Skyler Campbell is a normal, attractive teenager living in Great Neck, Long Island. In school she is fully engaged in her school’s activities, including being a cheer leader. The football team has just won an important game and she is about to celebrate with her friends when her grandfather tells her it is important that he speak with her. She says she will see them later but after their talk she begins a home schooling program dictated by the fact that a monstrous asteroid is headed for earth and scheduled to strike within five years if the atomic war heads dispatched cannot stop it. Her grandfather, a former member of the Army’s specially trained Delta Force, wants her to learn to survive under any possibly evolving conditions. Thus begins her home schooling specifically designed to reach this objective. The asteroid strikes earth with cataclysmic effects. She and her grandfather manage to survive because not only had he trained her completely, but had a home with one of the deep survival shelters that had been constructed by a number of people when atomic warfare possibilities first became a viable possibility. The story presents a constant flow of credible occurrences that one might expect following a strike of this nature. There follows equally believable after reactions of earthquakes, flooding and entre into the post- catastrophic world. One, unexpected but also credible occurrence is a brief influx of alien organisms released from within the structure of the asteroid when it strikes that leave a horrible and lasting effect on survivors. Strangely it affects only part of the population but unfortunately Skyler is one of those affected. As they finally are able to emerge from their shelter, they encounter other individuals, some also affected while others who are not and these latter attempt to annihilate all of those who are. The story line follows Skyler as she attempts to survive this devastating situation as she heads west from this most seriously, seemingly center, of the devastating blow.

Discussion: The author has provided a non-stop thrilling tale of the attempts of a now unusually physically compromised young woman who otherwise still is fully equipped to survive as she tries to save others as well as herself in her constantly death-threatened journey. It is a story set forth at such break-neck speed that other than the more pragmatic reader will find difficult to put down. The only caveat offered is for these latter.

5* for other than pragmatists.

Elevator Quest

Elevator Quest ISBN: 9781073215035, EA Strarchilde Co, a horror fantasy by Emmanuel M. Arriaga.

The story opens with a number of people entering the elevator of a building all heading to the 27th floor. Somewhere near the top there is a power failure. The older model elevator is not equipped with brakes, and the car begins to descend. The next floor mentioned is the 11th, followed by the 5th and the ultimate crash at the bottom. All of the occupants seem to survive, leave the car and enter a bizarre world where they find corpses with a plethora of weapons scattered about. Each arms him/her self and they proceed as a group from one chamber to another encountering a series of weird opponents. There are goblins, orcs, robed monks who do not speak, have empty eye sockets and attack with their long poisonous finger nails and mechanized figures. There also are seemingly bodiless flying attackers and even eventually they are attacked by their own mirror images. Fortunately, the weapons they discovered and use not only are magical but sentient as well and can conjure up bolts of lightning, torrential rain and winds and destructive flames and one member has acquired the ability quickly to heal anyone’s occurring wounds. They do lose some members and their journey eventually leads them to an area where two members of the group, Damon and Samil, make a startling declaration and the tale winds to a surprising, although on many levels not unexpected, ending.

Discussion: The author has provided an interesting overall plot that is not revealed until the finale. Leading up to this ending, the action is almost unceasing and mostly of a violent nature. There is little character development and a rather rambling progression of the quite repetitive magical activities.

Summary: A plot reminiscent of appealing divertive material so often provided by today’s electronic equipment, no doubt of interest to persons enjoying these productions. Also those for whom non-stop action is enough. This reader believes judicious editing of several areas would greatly enhance enjoyment.

3* 4* Late revealed interesting plot; readers enjoying non-stop action; 2* for others.