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Ashe Elton Parker
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2) Alien Winter by J.A. Marlow, Contemporary Science Fiction

COVER COPY:

Hawk and Zach Callahan finally arrive at the lodge Crazy Uncle George left them. It’s more than they expected, literally, but that also means there is a lot more to clean.

And clean, and clean…

But it’s hard to clean when the lodge has a plumbing problem and the power keeps going out. Oh, and then there are the noises, and with the suggestion the Salmon Run Lodge is haunted.

As Zach starts attending a new school he sees his father sink into depression over the state of the lodge and all the problems associated with it. Is his father planning to pack them up and move them back to the lower-48 before they’ve even survived their first Alaskan winter?

But the humans of Salmon Run aren’t the only ones with problems. Nanuk is ordered to take with him a new arrival, jeopardizing his observations on the humans. The only one who seems to be doing well is Yenni, who has a new sensor and is anxious to use it in his studies.

The human world and the alien world collide on the same day when the town of Salmon Run come together to help out the Callahans, leading Zach and Sasha on a wild ride through the Alaskan wilds.

And with it the possible answers to multiple mysteries surrounding Salmon Run, the Lodge, and the aliens themselves.

A 35100 word stand-alone Novella in the Salmon Run series.

MY REVIEW:

In this book, J.A. Marlow weaves another compelling tale describing the adventures of Zach and Hawk Callahan, newcomers to Salmon Run hoping to be able to prepare and run their “crazy” uncle’s old vacation lodge in Alaska. Between cleaning the lodge and the intermittent, unexplainable power outages, they’re kept busy while Zach tends to school and accompanying his best friend Sasha to some new locations about the town.

And the aliens are having their own difficulties. They’ve been saddled with Major Dreel, who has no understanding of the research Yenni and Nanuk are performing. He tends to step in and make things worse when things would go perfectly fine if he just kept still. Even though he does prove a bit useful after a while, he is still more trouble than he’s worth.

Zach and Sasha’s encounters with Yenni, Nanuk, and Major Dreel only complicate matters for the two teens. And then Zach’s felt someone watching them, and it’s NOT the aliens. Sasha insists it’s the Little People, but he’s not so sure.

Author J.A. Marlow’s continuation of the Salmon Run series is a great follow-up to the initial book. Unlike the second books of other series, it doesn’t suffer from not being as good. It moves along at a steady pace, not leaving moments for the prose to lag. As in the first book, the chapters are short, but that makes it a faster read for an adult reader, and just-right for younger readers, for whom it’s aimed. Marlow writes the kind of feel-good science fiction that leaves the reader wanting more, and I definitely want more!

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Ashe Elton Parker
"Just love me, fear me, do as I say, and I will be your slave." ~ David Bowie as Jareth in Labyrinth
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Member since 1998.
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