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Steve Rzasa was born and raised in South Jersey, and fell in love with books--especially science fiction novels and historical volumes--at an early age. He and his wife, Carrie, have two boys and live in Buffalo, Wyoming. He has worked as a waiter, a reporter, an editor and a librarian in that order. His first novel, The Word Reclaimed, was published in 2009 and followed shortly by its sequel, The Word Unleashed, in 2010. His third novel, Broken Sight, was published in 2011. The Word Reclaimed was a finalist for the 2010 ACFW Carol Award (Speculative) and Steve's short story, Rescued, a precursor to Broken Sight, won the 2009 G.K. Chesterton Award in the Athanatos Christian Ministries Writing Contest.
You have a lovable transport ship crew like on the Serenity; the gripping sci-fi battles of the reimagined Battlestar Galactica (I could NOT stop reading the action-packed second half of the book); the somewhat awkward dialogue and cliched characters of the Star Wars prequels (honestly, when I read Baden I can't help but think of the whiny and melodramatic actor who played Anakin Skywalker); and of course the power of the Word.
The great attention given to the scientific/technological details made the book very enjoyable science fiction. (Nice to see such attention given to the real physics of space flight - inertia, orientation/rotation.)
I will admit to sometimes being distracted by the "put a string of incompatible letters together" language/naming of people/planets/curse words. (Of course, I just finished re-reading Tolkien's LOTR and his language/naming is SO purposeful...)
Set in a time when any religion that makes absolute claims or claims of exclusivity (i.e.: Judaism, Christianity, Buddhism, Islam, Hinduism) is outlawed and all religious texts have been hunted down and destroyed, a young man named Baden comes into possession of a Bible (maybe one of the few remaining in the universe?). Pursued by Kesek (the force tasked with ensuring the destruction of religious texts and the suppression of all "non-state sanctioned" beliefs) Baden and the crew of the Natalia Zoja begin a desperate race seemingly guided by an unseen hand.
There is scene near the end of the book when Baden reads out loud from the contraband Bible and surprises himself by offering an impromptu summary of its good news.Read more ›
I've been wanting to read this book for quite a while. Yesterday afternoon, I decided to take a look at it on Amazon, and then I flew into a 'bookish' excitement. The book, The Word Reclaimed, was available on Kindle, (I am lucky enough to own one) for 99 cents. Unbelieveable. I couldn't believe my eyes. I rushed into my bedroom, got out an envelope labeled "Emergency Book Fund" (which are quite useful), and took out a dollar, giving it to my mom, since my Kindle account is on her Amazon account.
I bought the book immediately, and I started reading shortly after supper; this the result.
In the far future, the civilized worlds have finally been freed of the curse of religion. Tolerance now rules the five colonies. Thanks to the secret police, no one has been bothered by so much as a hymn in two generations-much less a Torah, Koran, or that most dangerous of books, a Bible.
Baden is a teenager with an attitude. He spends his spare time salvaging wrecks in deep space, claiming for himself whatever the pirates leave behind. One day, Baden finds a book. A strange and very old book, preserved carefully against the ravages of deep space. Thinking he'll become rich if only for the value of the paper, he takes it. He counts himself lucky beyond all imagining. Until it begins talking to him. Amidst an interstellar war that threatens to overthrow the monarchy and drive great families to oblivion, Baden must evade the secret police and their attempts to get that book. Baden never had much use for religion. But it seems one has use of him. (Book Description taken from Amazon.com)
Wow. This book was awesome. When I finished it, the first thing on my mind was, 'I have to tell people about this'.Read more ›
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The Word Reclaimed is a fresh take on spiritual sci-fi in the form of a space opera set several centuries in the future. One king rules over five planets including Earth, and tolerance decrees that none may hold a religion or own any paper books - because they can't be checked by the government's constant digital spying.
We are introduced to two groups of people: the crew of the Natalia Zoja trading ship, who unexpectedly salvage an illegal Bible from a wrecked ship; and the shiny-faced military sent out to hunt them down - including a hard-nosed security investigator and a sympathetic family related to the royalty.
Already we begin to see the scope of the tale. I particularly enjoyed the realistic mix of nationalities and languages found in space, with touches like the captain's Eastern European swearing, the haiku-quoting crewmember, and the wealthy Arab trader who goes to great lengths to protect the Bible.
We get plenty of space battle scenes and planetside combat while waiting to discover the plot within the plot. I have to warn you, there is no ending to the story in this book. Rather, it serves as a high gateway and an expansive frame in which a future epic may appear.
The greatest power in this book for me is its emotive description of people's longings for the Word - people who have survived on memorised scraps for many years and yearn to see the entire truth. For that, it is a job well done.
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I am a fantasy and on occasion sci-fi fan. I won this book at a blog site and was looking forward to reading it, but had no idea that it would be as good as it was. Almost from page one I was hooked. I hated putting it down. I liked that the book isn't full of aliens, but rather a futuristic look at our universe if there were human expansion onto other planets. Overall this book is similar to stories I have read about Christians in persecuted countries in our day today. People hungry for the Word, living on the snippets that come their way but desperate for a whole copy of the Bible so that they would know just what God requires of them. There are the evil entities trying to snuff out the Word of God and any of Christ's children in this story too, as they are in our world today. Then there are those in the middle, at the moment fighting against the truth, not knowing that God is real, and Steve Rzasa made them very likable people, people you didn't want to jeer at; they will eventually have to make a choice. If you get a chance to read this book, take it, you won't be disappointed.
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