SESG Explorer
by Christopher Loric
Dorrance Publishing

"The Kammorrigans continued to pour fire down upon the Intrepid, the shields were beginning to buckle along the hull and several relays were tripping across the ship."

After receiving a message from an unknown entity in outer space, the US government assigns Kevin Brannigan to lead a secretive mission with a small group of ships to meet the message senders. Along with the message are some technologically advanced plans, including those to help build hyperdrives. Although the plans are mysteriously missing key components, engineers and scientists are able to build and equip ships capable of long-range space travel. Brannigan knows he needs to be prepared for anything, so he is sure to bring a complement of diplomatic, scientific, and military professionals. The group is assigned to map and explore as they go, but their primary objective is to contact the aliens, determine their motives, and, if possible, begin diplomatic relations by establishing a trade agreement.

Loric’s science fiction novel plays out like a military-minded Star Trek movie but in an extended-version format. The author’s writing is easy to follow and doesn’t delve into the deeply technical parts of space travel and combat, which many readers will likely appreciate. The action sequences are well-written and show Loric at his best and most entertaining. The story is centered on exploration and combat encounters rather than character arcs and will resonate with readers whose tastes fall along those lines. The author is adept at crafting exposition, and the book offers a great deal of this before the spaceships fly away. The technical abilities and choices of the earthlings and aliens take a backseat to the more prevalent space opera elements of the story. Once the action starts, sci-fi lovers may easily get lost in the fun much like summers past when watching hits like Independence Day.

Return to USR Home