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Mrs Count, Chobham Academy Book Group

Railhead

I admit that I don't naturally gravitate toward sci-fi, so Railhead was, for me at least, a bit of a step into the unknown. And due to its originality, I think it might have been a step into something different for sci-fi fans, too.

Railhead takes an original concept (trains through space via wormholes or 'K-gates' rather than spaceships) and spins it into an interesting adventure with a likable pair of main characters. The good/evil dynamics are twisty-turny and keep you guessing at character motivations. The original concepts (such as the Hive Monks) did make me step back for a moment and admire the creativity of the author. I did find it confusing in places, and was thrown off by what seemed to be some abrupt changes in scene or between points of view. Once you're settled, though, it does provide a curious ride through a somewhat different universe.

I would have liked to see it self-contained and not a set-up for Book 2, but I'm aware that can be a rare thing in sci-fi. When so much effort is spent on world-building, why would you give it up after only one book?

Posted on: 19th May 2017 at 01:47 pm

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