The Northern Star: The Beginning
By Mike Gullickson
From the back cover:
The oil is gone.
That way of life, ended.
An invention frees the mind.
A cyber-world becomes salvation.
A boy, a weapon.
A soldier, a titan.
While nations thrash into antiquity,
And a CEO becomes Queen,
A man, brilliant and cunning,
Plots to rule it all.
Imagine a future where oil is nearly depleted, how would the world react?
When governments weaken, who picks up the slack?
As America falls, who will be there to save her?
Gullickson’s The Northern Star is a fascinating joyride into the near future where virtual reality has replaced reality, and humans are forced to find contentment in a land of ones and zeros.
A fun mixture of dark dystopia, cyberpunk (a favorite genre of mine), and science fiction: Gullickson delivers a complex story filled with the devices readers crave in an action/adventure series.
The characters are complex and well developed, which I appreciated because it has secured my reading of book two, Civil War. To avoid merely summarizing the story, I will highlight my favorite character. I enjoyed the young genius, Justin. Although Justin’s story was a minor part of a larger story, his gift is what really captured my imagination. A blending of the Matrix’s Neo with Orson Scott Card’s Ender, his power to write code and manipulate the MindLink system is the kind of anomaly that I enjoy in scifi stories. A boy to be both pitied and feared. I hope to see Justin’s story farther developed and him become the main protagonist in a future book.
Plus, there are giant mech-like robots called Major Tanks. Smaller than Pacific Rim’s giant robots, they reminded me of a cross between those and MechWarriors. These super soldiers will no doubt change the future of warfare in Civil Wars as a weak alliance between China and the US only undoubtedly becomes weaker.
Written on 23rd December 2014 by D. L. Denham .