Monday, April 04, 2016
Book Review : 'Far from the Spaceports' by Richard Abbott
‘Far from the Spaceports’ is an interesting book for me. Firstly, it was science fiction, and though I have read some of these, this book would be the first one, that I review. Secondly, I have a dream, (obviously, impossible) which is to travel to space, and actually live up there.
So, here I am in a galaxy far, far away, asking Scotty to beam me up, but this time to spaceports. Or should I say beam me up, Richard Abbott. So, shall we begin?
This book comprises of two main leads. Mitnash Thakur and his artificially intelligent companion, Slate. Mitnash is a financial fraud investigator, working for the Economic Crime Review Board, or the ECRB. This organisation investigates financial discrepancies and glitches that may happen in the solar system.
Slate, which uses Shayna’s voice, as its audio basis is all set for the trip. Slate has a personality that is almost friendly and is almost a counsellor plus therapist. You forget that it is an AI.
Mit is having a good holiday with Shayna (not his AI), but his real lady friend, when he gets called by ECRB.
In this case, the ECRB has noted a huge financial misdeed, in a place known as the Scilly Isles. Scilly Isles is a cluster of asteroids, way beyond Mars’s orbit. Mitt has a lot of coding experience, and therefore uses it as a cover.
He and Scale land up on the isles and get down to business. They are meant to find out if their suspicions are correct and if the islands are being used as a base, for this scam. The two of them meet a lot of human settlers on the island and a whole lot of parakeets. It is their job to quell the threat and see that the reputation of the island is protected.
On the island, they end up meeting a variety of people. Names were interesting, including Khufu, Chandrika, Yul Yulsson, Kassandra, Parvati, Nick, Selif, and Boris. You have to read this book, to discover who these people are and whether the scam is solved.
What was interesting about the book besides the awesome set up, and the background, was the author keeping in touch with the subtle ways of humans, way into the future.
Of course, there is fraud and there are people investigating it, but he manages to grab the reader’s interest, right at the start. How do the two of them manage to solve the mystery? How does it all work, in an environment that is so different from ours?
It was different from the usual space thrillers that we have seen. No wars or anything of the sort, but the Abbott's mystery holds good. Of course, it does mean that I was reading and re-reading the book, every now and then, because I did not get some parts. Maybe, my science needs looking into. Looking forward to the next one…
You can Buy the Book, right here