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Return To Earth (The Galaxy Series Book 2)

de Aithal

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I consider the implications carefully on the rare occasions when I give a low star rating because I think the reviewer’s role should be to encourage and publicise creative writing talent, bring out the best aspects of a piece and help future work by pointing out where improvements in the writer’s craft can be made. It isn’t my job to go around smiting and discouraging hard-working authors, but I also have a duty to warn readers if something isn’t a masterpiece and they would be wasting their time. This particular author has published at least one good book previously, so I think he will be a gentleman and accept my thoughts about his work and then write a much more endearing adventure next time.

The sentences in this work flow better than their cousins did in the first novel of the series, so that’s a plus. There is a fantasy element to the story too, as it features a space ship which arrives on Earth and ferries the characters between dystopian future locations.

In my opinion, there is no science fiction in this book because the criteria for that is usually to present a plausible explanation (framed in the physical laws of science for a technology) for a device that has not yet been invented, or has not yet been made to operate practically. The technology in this book includes solar panels, projection of images onto surfaces, stun guns, refining water and magnetic levitation (MagLev trains); all of which have already been invented and are in use. Therefore, this could be better classified as near future political fiction with a fantasy travel element.

Having used the word “political”, that brings me to the bullseye problem, which not only lets this work down but deliberately usurps and poisons it. At the time of writing, the author was clearly traumatised by the outcome of an election in the USA (perspective footnote for aliens: the loudest 1 of the 199 countries on our planet). Just to clarify, I have no interest in either of these political sides but can appreciate that this event must have dominated many people’s thinking at the time, filling their minds like the sun in the sky, so the result was deeply polarising in that country. Many of the supporters of the marginally losing ideology became very angry and attached obsessive importance to this outcome, in extreme cases becoming over-emotional and fanatical. The author of this book was politically committed when writing Return to Earth and his voice takes over this story, channelling this personal political angst openly, but by doing so he loses the readers’ hearts and minds. This isn’t the first time that’s been done. Shakespeare’s only failed play was Timon of Athens and if you read that work (because nobody performs it), the thing that ruined it was the endless, miserable, negative ranting. In this book, there’s a miserable ending too. Maybe Aithal can step out like Shakespeare did and eclipse this work with original and entertaining brilliance next time. Who knows? Perhaps RTE is just a bad day at the office, an exception to the rule.

In summary, this is not an enjoyable work of fantasy or a flight of science fiction imagination. It is a bitter diatribe of one-sided political lecturing that has been disguised under a sci-fi book cover. Many readers will agree with the ideological viewpoints, although most people’s red hot fury cools as time passes and perspective returns, but this book is still a Trojan horse deployed with the single purpose of delivering a rant. The style of delivery may even push the reverse intention and unite undecided people against the author’s ideology. Objectively, the book has academic value as a snapshot of social history, an emotional flare-up preserved in amber for all time. Isn’t that a lovely thought?

Hypothetically, even if the author is completely correct (we can’t tell yet) and a voting decision taken recently will destroy the future of the human race, I would advise that this is the wrong way to present that prediction because it scares the majority of readers away. If you lose public goodwill, it doesn’t matter whether you are the new Nostradamus or Shakespeare because without any readers, your thoughts won’t go anywhere.

Every entertainer has heard a boo at some point in their career. The best of them have reflected on when and why the mood changed against them, adjusted their style, knuckled down and tried again. That would be a positive ending to this story. I like happy endings. ( )
  HavingFaith | Mar 21, 2018 |
If you read science fiction to escape reality for a few hours, then this book is not for you. The book is supposed to be about three lost astronauts who want to return to their timeline on earth. While this is the underlying premise behind the storyline, the book does not deliver. Most of the book’s rhetoric is about global geological decline and slavery in the future; the cause of which is tied to our current administration’s environmental policy and the divisiveness it creates in our population. I see this book as being a political blog pretending to be a sequel to a science fiction book.

There was a lot of political ranting in the “Beyond the Milky Way”, the first book in this series, but I attributed that to this being a fairly new author who happened to be wrapped up in a present-day political moment as he wrote the book. I rated that book highly as I saw potential in the author, Aithal. Many other reviewers criticized him for the political rants. After that, I would have expected him to take the criticisms to heart. He did not. Instead, Aithal chose to double down on the political rants in the second book.

I read the whole book hoping that he would redeem himself. He never did.

Although I agree with several of Aithal’s political positions, a book intended for sci-fi enthusiast is not the appropriate place to air these views. The title and description of this book are misleading. My expectation was that it would be escapist reading, not doom and gloom like today's daily news feed. ( )
  ronploude | Oct 24, 2017 |
Aquesta ressenya l'ha escrita l'autor.
** Like nothing else you'll ever read **

Return to Earth invites readers along on a journey home to the planet we know and love... or at least, that's what it seems like at first. But where's home? For our main characters, they find to their puzzlement that Earth is not at all what they remember it being. But a new kind of planet brings with it a new terrain to explore, a place both strange and familiar all at the same time.

I really enjoyed the first book in the Galaxy Series and I'm happy to see that its sequel not only followed suit, but brought something completely new and original along with it. It reminded me of that documentary series Life After People in many ways, but it's not just the setting that is interesting, but also the relationship that these four characters share with each other as they discover a whole new Earth that they never imagined. This novel has a great vocabulary, exciting intensity, creativity and depth, and I think it's definitely a cut above most other sci-fi books I've read. Emotional, imaginative, unforgettable and fun to read especially if you love travel, space or history, if you're ready to see the world with new eyes then I definitely recommend Return to Earth. ( )
  IWO | May 22, 2017 |
Return to Earth (The Galaxy Series Book #2) by Aithal is another winner! Although it is the second book in the series it can be read as a stand alone. The author gives the reader enough background info that the reader won't get lost in the story. I adored the first story and this one was great too. Lots of action, imagination, sci/fi, honest speculation of what could happen, great plot, and wonderful characters. I was given this book to read, begged really, and was not under any obligation to leave a review but I wanted to share this with everyone. Great book! ( )
  MontzaleeW | Jan 11, 2017 |
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