|Digital List Price:||$4.99|
|Print List Price:||$22.99|
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Refugee (Bio of a Space Tyrant Book 1) Kindle Edition
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|Length: 336 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
|Page Flip: Enabled||
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Top customer reviews
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Here we go...When I first read this book in the mid-80s (and the other novels in the saga) I absolutely loved them. Reading about a kid who goes from tragedy eventually to greatness was very appealing for me. It was also the height of the cold war at the time so all of the references made the settings seem familiar. If Amazon existed back then I would have given this book five stars.
I never read the books again after that first time, but I remembered them fondly. I recently decided to get them digitally and re-read them for old time's sake. I have to say, I wish I had not gone back to that memory.
Since I first read Bio of a Space Tyrant, I've read hundreds of other sci-fi books, seen many movies and TV shows, become more educated in science and astronomy, and even written a number of sci-fi stories myself. This is not to mention experiencing 30 more years of life, politics, jobs, relationships, and much more. I haven't seen it all, but enough to have a pretty good idea of what's a solid story and what isn't.
I guess you can see where this is going. In my opinion, the books just don't hold up for people who have more than a high-school education or experience. In this first book there are countless examples of things that just plain don't make sense. Things nobody would ever do or say.
Now I know that the books are supposed to taken from Hope's journals and writings from a future after his death. All the stories are told from his perspective and in his words. Some of the accounts were written down long after the events happened and he glosses over some things that he either doesn't remember well or just aren't relevant in his opinion.
Certainly that can explain the overly formal way every character talks and acts. Maybe Hope is just not a good storyteller and can't properly create differing personalities. Perhaps Piers did this on purpose. However, if you've read any other books by P.A. around that time (or before) then you probably realize this is probably not the case. At any rate, all the characters in the book communicate in pretty much the same way using the same level of emotion with few exceptions.
Now, to what the characters do. I don't want to retell the entire story here, so I'll just sum it up: It's like watching a high school play written by highschoolers. People saying and doing absurd things in ridiculous situations. Acting in ways that just don't make sense. We could also chalk this up to a fallable old man's memory, but I don't like that.
The universe Hope lives in is a pretty big annoyance as well. It's just the cold war nations and politics painted on the solar system down to the littlest details. All the cold war places are there with very little change in their attitudes or politics. Even the "lay of the land" is the same, so to speak.
The author also did his best to transpose Earth's geographical locations on to the various spots in the solar system. Kind of silly since everyone lives in giant bubbles floating in the atmosphere, under domes on planets, or in spaceships.
I could go on. It just seems like the author wanted to create Earth's cold war in space right down to the smallest detail. In this first book P.A. says that the book is a direct analogy of the Vietnamese Boat People in the 80's. The entire universe in the BoaST is a direct analogy of everything.
The book is not entirely terrible. The concepts of the gravity lenses, the bubble cities, realistic inter-system travel times, space manuvering, and other technical things are pretty well done. Plus you gotta admit that the story of someone going from nothing to an all-powerful ruler, expertly fighting off his enemies with words and deeds, plus getting to have crazy circus sex with literally any woman he wants no matter how old and wrinkly he gets is pretty compelling.
Still, I'm disappointed. In myself mostly. I knew deep down that it was a simple story but I shouldn't have gone and ruined the memory. I should have left it in my teenage years and remembered it fondly instead of the shallow mess that it actually is.
I devoured these novels as a boy, in school. When I graduated, I donated the entire series to my HS English teacher. She kept a small lending library in her classroom, that I availed my self of throughout my four years. At the time, I thought I could easily replace them, and they were too good not to share. Sadly, by the time I was out of college, and able to afford books that weren't for class, this series was out of print. It has been more than twenty years, but I have finally replaced them.
Unlike many other e-books I've read recently, this book had virtually no errors in formatting, grammar, or words. I think this is because the book began as a printed novel and was professionally edited before being converted to an e-book format.
The book is well written and I noticed only a few edition errors. The story follows a logical sequence. But I lost all hope and put it down.
'Refugee' can be a harsh read. The story of Hope Hubris and his family's journey to the Land of the Free on Jupiter is not that of a pleasure cruise. There are rapes, murders, sacrifice and heartbreak ... it is not your usual sci-fi thriller - butt its also not a ponderous, difficult read.
I'm glad it's available again as a kindlized book and I'm looking forward to working through the series. Its a wonderful, entertaining series.
Most recent customer reviews
I read the first 3 books when I was 13 or 14, but forgotten what had happened, and wanted to get...Read more