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Reader (Daughter of Time) Hardcover – May 5, 2013

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Product Details

  • Series: Daughter of Time (Book 1)
  • Hardcover: 312 pages
  • Publisher: Twice Pi Press (May 5, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0989000443
  • ISBN-13: 978-0989000444
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (101 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,175,660 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Can 17-year-old Ambra Dawn save the Earth from a malevolent alien emperor in the late 21st century? Stebbins presents a dark vision of humanity in thrall to a merciless but technologically advanced alien race known as the Dram. Kidnapped by these evil aliens for her special gift (as a "reader" she has visions of the past and future), Ambra is subjected to torture that deprives her of her eyesight but expands her powers. She is later sold into slavery but freed by the Xix, a benevolent alien race. With her powers exceeding those of all previous readers, Ambra must travel through space and time to defeat the Dram and save the universe. Stebbins's complex sci-fi novel is well plotted, and the world and alien races he creates are rich, clearly imagined, and full of detail. Readers of thoughtful science fiction that offers myriad allusions to everyday themes will welcome this springboard to a new and imaginative series.


"A gripping science-fiction epic that will propel readers toward wonder" -ForeWord Reviews

"Unique and altogether profound, reminiscent of Bradbury, haunting, thought-provoking and surprisingly philosophical" -San Francisco Book Reviews

"An original take on various sci-fi motifs that meditates on themes of love and humanity. Stebbins does an exceptional job. A richly detailed, compelling story about the power of love." -Kirkus Reviews

Customer Reviews

Look forward to reading Books 2 and 3.
Amazon Customer
Very well written - it held my interest throughout the book.
This is a book you will not want to miss!
Linda C. Holladay

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

34 of 35 people found the following review helpful By Carolyn Bragg or C. Bragg on June 26, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
There were some very good observations and commentaries in this book, but since it is the main character talking to the reader, there is a lot missing too. There is never a sense of place or real-life events. It's all a grand narrative with time almost suspended while Ambra Dawn urges the reader to help save Earth. We are inside her head, but never part of her experiences. And the danger of starting chapters with quotes (really short ones so there are lots of quotes), is that sometimes the quotes left me with a "Huh?" feeling instead of "Ah!" The inclusion of complex formulas to start each chapter is more puzzling because Ambra is terrible at math and wouldn't have any reason to include them herself. Editing problems are few but obvious, usually causing me to stop to decide which word is missing (the extra words are just amusing).

The biggest problem I had with this book is that I never felt like I was with Ambra Dawn. Did she have a nervous habit, did she care for her hair, was she reassured by touching smooth surfaces? How did the water taste? What was her voice like? How did the aliens smell different? Any kind of sensory information would have been helpful. One or two of these questions may have been answered, but I had no sense of being THERE. And I felt sorry for her, but not emotionally connected or engaged in the story until the return to Earth. And still, it wasn't her I cared about, but her friends. I honestly tried, but the Ambra character was just as dry and devoid of the details that make people human to us.

Addressing the reader of the book directly--including the self-deprecation--in such a melodramatic way was corny and felt more like a fairytale than a serious appeal for help. This is why I gave the book 2 stars instead of 2-1/2 to 3 stars.

Sadly, I predict that book 2 will be much the same, which is too bad because there were things I liked. This book was just too dry.
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31 of 32 people found the following review helpful By book reader of the ages on May 14, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
When I started reading this book, i thought I might not finish it. Complicated, BIG words, complex, confusing, etc. But, then i became involved in the story,interested in the process, and wanting to know the outcome. I thought, got this as a free book, how good is it? Surprise, surprise. Even with the complex language, I wanted to read ALL of it.This is not a book i want to have really happen but oh what a ride. Read it in two days so something clicked and i could not put it down. I will look up this author again.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Mr. Richard Lw Bunning on May 29, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
This is the first Stebbins I have read; it is unlikely to be the last. The story is very much visionary, speculative and philosophical science fiction. The writing is all in first person narrative form being an episodic interior monologue. In other words, the mental voice, the mind, of Ambra Dawn talks directly to us through the book.
I really enjoy this sort of inventive philosophical science fiction. Condemn me, not Stebbins, if I paint too enthusiastically. The stories structure is pure dystopia, but dark though the story is it leaves a strong glimmer of hope for humanity and the victory of good over evil. To be victorious we will come to realize that we need Ambra Dawn to be heroic. We must also learn to trust and follow where ever she guides us.
Every being in the known galaxy appears to blindly accept a false premise, this being that there are many Orbs, portals, between places in Space and Time. All civilizations in this creation are as seduced by what they observe of the portals as we all once where by the assumption that the Earth must have edges. Ambra comes to see beyond what other beings can fathom. Ambra knows far less about the galaxy than do the cleverest of other races; and yet, she is the first ever to navigate a safe passage through to other remote areas of space. As Ambra starts to gain in learning and intuition she seems to sense that the Orb might be more than a construct of physics, and so raising the prospect that it might be a monolithic physical god like energy. What is more, could she possibly be a sort of messiah for that power?
There is a deep sense of profound tragedy, a feeling that the destruction of the Earth may well be inevitable, unless the history of the past can be changed, and the future controlled.
Read more ›
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Retired bear on August 16, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition
The first thing that struck me was my impression of the author. I knew nothing about him when I requested the book through LibraryThing. Mr. Stebbins is a very brilliant man as evidenced by his biography I read at the end of the book.

Each chapter is headed by some sort of differential equation that I never figured out the purpose. Each chapter also had a quote from a myriad of authors or famous people. Some of the quotations make sense to the chapter but most do not. Maybe I would understand more if I was familiar with more of the quoters.

The storyline goes from science fiction to psychological to philosophical and finally fantasy. It is written from the perspective of a 17 year old disfigured girl as dictated to a writer for our reading pleasure. This approach reminded me of how the Book of Mormon was written.

If you stripped out the overly cerebral portions of the book you would end up with a decent novella. Even though I could comprehend all the esoteric parts of the book, it simply did not hold my interest.
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More About the Author

I am a biomedical researcher who writes political and international thrillers, science fiction, narrated storybooks, and more.

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