Posts Tagged ‘Gaea’s Chosen’

Book Review: Gaea’s Chosen The Mayday Directive

Uncategorized | Posted by davidludwig
Nov 21 2011

The new Lost Girls’ Society page is up and accessible via the Pages navigation to the right or the main Lost Girls’ Society story page above or to the right. Anyone new to the site should probably start from the main story page for either Lost Girls’ Society or Niar Saga as they offer the best gateways into the fiction that is the heart of this site.

And now for something a little different, my first Book Review;

Last month I won a copy of Cara Michaels’ Ebook “Gaea’s Chosen: The Mayday Directive” and admit it’s taken me until now to read it. Of course, once I did sit down with it I read the whole thing in one sitting. “Gaea’s Chosen” represents a fanciful and well imagined science fiction adventure geared toward more mature readers. The Ebook is available for a modest $0.99 on Smashwords.com.

Cara’s own description of the work is; Gaea’s Chosen: Ten men and ten women traveling 20 light years across the galaxy to settle a new world. The chance of disaster far outweighs the chance of success…

Commander Gemma Bryant left Earth knowing full well the man chosen to be her mate couldn’t stand the sight of her, but she opted to make the best of a bad situation

Now Gemma is awakened from 19K years in stasis to find her mission gone horribly wrong. They’re off course, missing crew and supplies, and for the remaining Chosen, the world they’ve landed on is far from uninhabited. As if she doesn’t have enough to manage, someone new is unexpectedly claiming her attention.

I’m most familiar with Cara through her website, her flash fictions and Twitter, and know her best as the host of the Menage Monday blog challenge—a great exercise and community for writers. Given more words to play with for The Mayday Directive I feel we get to know Cara, her characters and her world even better.

One of the first things that stands out to me about “Gaea’s Chosen” is the significance of the linguistic ability of the main character, Gemma Bryant, which reminded me pleasantly of Samuel R. Delany’s “Babel-17”. In Gemma’s case her linguistic talents allow her to converse with computers and Artificial Intelligences in such a way that they open up to her and reveal their frailties and insecurities.

In fact one of the most entertaining and refreshing aspects of “Gaea’s Chosen” is the idiosyncratic computer system, Gaea. In spite of being a computer, Gaea is no perfectly logical nor really perfectly anything construct. Instead she actually displays less composure and less efficiency than the military trained human members of the crew.

All around the characterizations and interactions of those characters are highly compelling and definitely the best part of Cara’s story. The adventure tends to unfold in the most exciting and interesting way possible, and yet with in-setting explanations so plausible as to make the suspension of disbelief necessary for the story wholly comfortable even after you finish and step away from the book. My favorite example of this is the humans’ use of “arc blades”—because really, who doesn’t think futuristic swords are cool? The blades being elegantly explained within the story as humanity’s inability to give up on war even after guns were ‘legislated into extinction’.

Weighing in at 7 Chapters, “Gaea’s Chosen: The Mayday Directive” feels like it’s just the hook from the beginning of a full length novel, but at $0.99 I won’t have any qualms about buying the installments as they come out—though perhaps when the story is finished a full collection will be available for a single download.

I don’t want to spoil anything about this fascinating adventure, but I feel it is necessary to say that a lot of “Mayday Directive” seems to be set-up—as the full scope and circumstances of the tale only just seem to be starting to be revealed at the end of this installment. Also the adult content is mostly just discussed in this segment, whereas I imagine as the story continues we will be treated to more ‘on-screen’ mature play.

And that is my first book-review. Whether I did it right or not, what you should take away is that it is a good story and completely worth picking up if you have a dollar to spend on a quick and engaging read.