Reviewing science fiction is tough. I have very specific tastes and I’m not one to keep reading a book just because “I have to finish it”.
Frontiers by Jeff W. Horton appealed to my sci-fi tastes and left me wondering, “Why can’t more Christian sci-fi authors write like this?”
A Dream to Unite Humanity. Scientists discover the technology to successfully construct Earth’s first interstellar spacecraft, code named Frontier. Hank Reynolds, a gifted and courageous test pilot for the United States Air Force, is assigned to test pilot humanity’s first interstellar spacecraft on a historic flight to Alpha Centauri. Under the command of the fledgling Earth Space Alliance the spacecraft will carry human beings to the stars, and beyond.
A Plot to see it fail. Someone doesn’t want to see this happen and will stop at nothing to see it fail—including murder. When the Frontier is sabotaged, it leaves Hank stranded and alone to die in the Alpha Centauri system. With their dreams crumbling around them, will they be able to discover who is behind the plot to steal the alien technology, and to murder those closest to it?
Frontiers by Jeff W. Horton picks up several years after the events surrounding Nick Reynolds and the U.S. Cyber Command. Nick’s son, Hank, must now pilot an experimental craft invented from alien technology that his parents have been secretly developing in Nevada.
This was not an easy book for me to review. I have not read the first book in the series, [email protected], so I was as invested in the story. Although there are some call-backs to the first book, in Frontiers I felt like I was missing something. This isn’t any fault of the author, it is the second book in a series and the reader is expected to have some familiarity with the previous book. My odd feelings aside, I’ve done my best to review the book on its own merits.
Overall, I found the characters and plot to be enjoyable. Some characters are developed further from the previous book and we’re introduced to new characters. The pace was a bit slow for me. I’d like to have had the plot develop a little bit faster but I wouldn’t call the plot plodding, just slow for my tastes.
The writing is on-par with most of the books I read from popular mainstream novelists. That is to say, it’s good. At no point did I feel like I was reading a stereotypical “bad” Christian novel. Just as a side note, there are plenty of “bad” secular novels too. Just search Amazon in any category and you’ll find them.
Horton skillfully handles the question, “How would discovering alien life impact one’s faith?” While this is probably not something most Christians think about, those of us who read science fiction have wrestled with this dilemma. It’s handled without being “preachy” and in a way that I think even non-Christians could understand.
Dialogue between characters feels natural and Horton isn’t overly detailed when describing a scene or object important to the plot. Some people enjoy hyper-detail in their books but I’ve never found chapter-long descriptions of swords or laser rifles to be interesting. Horton manages to hit a nice sweet spot when it comes to his descriptions.
This is not the last book in the [email protected] series. The story continues in New Beginnings and picks up several years after the events in Frontiers. Teens and adults will enjoy reading the entire series and watch this multi-generational story unfold. Each book is currently available on Kindle for $3.99 and the first two are free for Kindle Unlimited subscribers.
About the Author
Jeff Horton was born in North Dakota, the youngest son of a career Air Force master sergeant. A voracious reader growing up, he read the Bible, and stories by many popular authors including Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, H.G. Wells, Jules Verne, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Michael Crichton, Tom Clancy, C.S. Lewis, and J.R.R. Tolkien.
Jeff Horton is an author of Christian Fiction, writing within several different genres, including science-fiction, fantasy, and apocalyptic thrillers. Find out more about Jeff and his books at his website.