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Biased and superficial Science Fiction reviews

       
The Prometheus Project

Copyright 2005 by Steve White

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SOJALS rating:     
no SOJALS point no SOJALS point no SOJALS point no SOJALS point no SOJALS point    Awful (0/5)

I first read this on the 11th March 2006.

In the 1960's, Bob Devaney is an ex-Special Forces who now runs a shady security firm. His latest mission is He is hired to escort a unusual lady to an important meeting. They are ambushed but he and the woman manage to escape. Following the escape he is invited to join the Prometheus Project. He finds that what he thought was true about the world is not true. The real world is radically different from and much much bigger than what he had believed and his life is changed forever.

Unbeknown to everyone outside the Prometheus Project, the galaxy is full of aliens, and dominated by a particular race - the Delkasu - who achieved interstellar flight before any others and have remained in control every since. The Earth is - with the aid of some stolen alien technology - is faking a level of development that we simply haven't yet achieved. If the Delkasu find out we are actually more primitive than we are telling them, we'll be colonized rather than being treated as near equals.

Nothing wrong with the plot. It's the delivery that kills this book. Everything is so obvious, there's no twist, no surprise, no tension. The love interest never becomes the baddie, nor vice versa. There's a momentary hope that Devaney might get off with Renata Novak, but you know noisomely sweet Chloe Bryant must be the woman for this man. Mr Inconnu never presents any more mystery than his name and even then the novel several times draws attention to the name. One is smart enough, I hope, to realise that "Sheefish, a game whitefish of Alaska and Canada", is not the meaning of "inconnu" intended here. Every time some SF technology is introduced - and that is every time the plot has stumbled into another narrative cul-de-sac - Steve White precedes its use with a pseudoscientific explanation of how such a thing is possible. It's SF for ten-year-olds. Oh, I see, it probably is SF for ten-year-olds.

It's the sort of story I'd have expected from the '50s - "Spawn Of The Death Machine" by Ted White, for example. My God, could they related? No, Steve Write is a pseudonym, mind you Ted White may be as well, so we're no better off.

Ted White, of course, wrote much better novels than "Spawn Of The Death Machine". I fondly remember "By Furies Possessed" (of course it may not have been better written, but it was certainly more enjoyable and without such an embarrassing title)

Loaded on the 6th July 2009.
    
Cover of The Prometheus Project
Cover by Bob Eggleton