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4 Small Stars

This is a detective story set in a science fiction venue. That’s all it is. If you like detective stories, then you’ll like this book. I don’t find these kind of stories that appealing because they seem to be obvious in who done what. The character descriptions in this book is pretty good. I especially liked Zaff; even the name is interesting and I’d like to know how they author picked it for one of his characters.

The whole story-line involves a “Collector” who works for a large corporation that is heavy into mining the asteroids around Saturn. They have bases/mines on Titan, the largest of the Saturn moons and that’s were the latter parts of the story take place. The author paints a pretty descriptive society of those that have and those that have not. If you were born on Earth and survived the Meteorite crash of 3 Sept 2034, now three centuries ago, the you were probably pretty well off or at least had a decent job. If you were unfortunate to have been one of the early families that left Earth for the moons of Saturn to avoid the destruction of Earth’s ecosystem, then you were probably born on Titan. That comes with a lot of problems. For one, your Titan environment was probably pretty sterile since you had to stay indoors all the time. As long as only those of Titan were around, you were just fine. Then the Earthers came. As a “Ringer of Saturn, you did not have the natural immunities to many diseases that are common on Earth. Therefore, as an already frail human, you quickly succumb to a great many contagions. And that meant you needed medicine.

So, medicine and drugs were controlled by the great corporations. They shipped the medicine and drugs to their buys and got paid big money for doing so. Unfortunately, the Ringers are not wealthy and they need a lot of these drugs and medicine. So, they set up a tiny terrorist group to steal what they needed. Your job as a Collector, is to find out who is in charge of the terrorist and get the stolen property back. Any means available is you guidance. And you have a new partner named Zaff. Now the detective work starts.

The book was easy to read. The plot seemed logical and believable. It was hard to believe that Zaff wasn’t an Android; he reminded me of Data on Star Trek Generations. I liked his character. I think you’ll like the book if you like murder mysteries and detective stories. I don’t believe there will be a sequel. The ending seems to make that impossible, but you never know what these authors are thinking.

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