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First Duty Paperback – June 20, 2010
Dasef has created a universe here, a future for an ever-changing human race that's just begging to be filled with more stories.
--Edward Cox, SDP Reviewer
Those young people who enjoy science fiction, especially the sort with implications for today's society, should enjoy this story, and perhaps be eager for further developments. --Al Past, Author of the Distant Cousin series
Cleverly plotted, engaging characters, all promise a good read. Don't miss it. --Lorrie Struiff, Author of Gypsy Crystal
From the Author
Nyra's story began more than 25 years ago. I wrote a short story titled 'Pressure Drill' about a young woman's final exam as a cadet in the Space Corps. The exam is not only final, but often fatal for the cadet. I put the story aside, along with a lot of other things I'd written, but never bothered to submit for publication. We didn't have email submissions back then, and it was far too much trouble to print out and snail mail to the very limited number of venues for a story like this.
Many years pass while I worked in the computer industry, all thoughts of fiction tucked away for later. "Later" finally arrived. I dragged out my old stories and thought "Pressure Drill" was pretty good and deserved to find a home. It did in a couple of different on-line SF/F ezines. I wrote another story about Nyra which delved into her purpose for joining a military organization. That story, "First Duty," also found a publishing home.
I completed Nyra's story and the book was contracted by a very small publisher. The was pre-ebook days. When my contract expired, I published the novella, "First Duty," on my own.
Also look at "Ultimate Duty," an expansion on the story with more mature material. It was published by Eternal Press in 2010.
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Top customer reviews
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(3.5 out of 5 stars, rounded up to 4)
The backdrop is certainly original. Imagine whole worlds existing solely to cater to the needs of a corporation. Brand Gamblin's Tumbler does something similar. However, the author does not devote enough time and energy developing this setting. How do people live in these worlds? What form of governance exist? Do they live in cities sprawled above ground, or interconnected caves below ground? Sadly, the author does not talk about this at all.
Instead, First Duty focuses on a budding rebellion on various planets against the corporate owner. And the protagonist has a somewhat meager role in it. The novel leads up to an ethical dilemma for Nyra Hutchings, the main protagonist: her oath to Space Service, and her duty to her historical roots. Again, the author spends too little time wrestling with this question. And therefore, I finished this novel with a profound sense of disappointment.
The end made me wish for a sequel.
I enjoyed it.