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Customer Review

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I couldn't put Homecoming down., August 4, 2010
This review is from: Homecoming (Paperback)
"Homecoming." What a nice surprise.

I had just gotten back from the cabin. You know, boat, moose, bears. You betcha. My wife handed me a book. "Read this, Sue Ann Bowling wrote it. You know, the woman you met in the airport." I politely started to put "Homecoming" on that ever-increasing pile of Books-to-be-Read.

"No, read it now, its Science Fiction, we need you to read it and write a review, nobody else we know reads this stuff."

Caught.

The weak part of the book is the first few pages. We science fiction readers have learned to expect a galactic gun battle, or at least a couple of dangerous alien macro-beasts, on page one. Nope. Sue Ann has put more depth into this book.

"Homecoming" really didn't take off until the horse race on page 24. Horse race? In a Sci-fi book? Yup, couple of alien cross-breeds and a telepathic slave, racing horses. Would have made a dandy first page.

The strong part is that I couldn't put "Homecoming" down.

This is book isn't William Gibson, but is it closer to his level of writing than it is to the utopian drivel, and to the testosterone-based battle star writings that plague science fiction. This book works. It is plausible, fun, and uses excellent science. It may be a snapshot of a possible future. While arguably safe to hand to your little sister, "Homecoming" explores the fragile edge of human/alien sexuality, cruelty, and compassion.

The hero, initially a young male slave, journeys through discovery, freedom, education, responsibility and leadership. Much as we all have done. If you have ever had an extra-sensory experience, this book will fold you into its pages, and not let you out until the dog says it's time for bed. There are the usual star jumps: I found myself stranded with the author on a primitive planet where the DNA helix spiraled in both directions, leaving half of the bio fauna indigestible. New concept. Cool. I learned that planets that are too aggressive never survive long enough to achieve space travel. Cool again, another new concept; which is why-we-read-science-fiction in the first place: It broadens our thinking. Bowling's strong academic background in geophysics comes through charmingly.

Homecoming is an easy read, but a deep read. I am surprised that this depth of writing came from a writer with this young a mind.
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