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Tuesday, 12 June 2012

Book Review: The Eldridge Conspiracy by Stephen Ames Berry

Look Inside US
Look Inside UK
Ames Berry clearly wanted to catch his reader by the throat and shake them about a bit from the outset in this novel, as the villain of the piece looked at
" a freckled teenage girl in soft repose, was now a wailing, writhing horror of ochre scales and suppurating sores, it's tentacles battering the lid." 
It worked, the opening sequence introduced us to Doctor Schmidla another 'recovered' Nazi from the 2nd World War by the American government.  Unlike other Nazi's though, where they were, it seems, integrated into a life for good and betterment, Schmidla's purpose, on behalf of the United States Government was to actively seek out (with the aid of the CIA and FBI), experiment on and ultimately murder a select group of US Citizens!

It is difficult to review this book to much without giving away the plot line but if you are old enough, and if you're not check out the Wikipedia page here , you will remember the movie The Philadelphia Experiment, where the US Government attempted to make a US Battleship invisible, during WW2.  The attempt failed!

This book takes us to the present (or at least to the 80's when this book is set and doesn't suffer any for that) and to the fact that while the attempt to make the ship invisible failed, it did do something to the crew.  Whatever it did wasn't manifest in the survivors but in their children and even more so in their grandchildren.... Think X Men II


There are twists and turns everywhere in this book with a plausibility borne from the recent hash of super hero movies, but the real hero is a father who lost a baby daughter only to find that the mad Doctor arranged for her kidnapping (presumed death) over twenty years before..... and he finds a friend in the closing paragraphs wasn't the friend you'd want to have

There are some graphic horror scenes described, particularly when one bad-ass gets his comeuppance at the hands, or rather the mind, of one of the pursued 'Potentials' and I liked what she did with him, even if she herself didn't.

The book is well written and the characters feel real.  All of us by now, have seen far too many shows telling us that Governments are not always the protectors that we would want or believe them to be and  Ames Berry plays on this and turns it into a horrific story suggesting that the people in power for years have been killing citizens for a perceived threat, whether it was real or not and as with his futuristic space borne books he has left the door open in another reality for a come back and I for one , hope there is a sequel....


Editing for Kindle /iPad: 4 out of 5
Reading Enjoyment: 4 out of 5 based on a couple of formatting errors and no page numbers
Page length on kindle /iPad: 279 estimated although the page numbers are not shown on either iPad or Kindle - Come on Mr Ames Berry show the Bl**dy numbers
Plot: 5 out of 5
Overall Rating: 5 out of 5

2 comments:

  1. Stephen Ames Berry22 June 2012 13:33

    Thank you for the thoughtful and generous review, Tom. Very pleased you liked ELDRIDGE.

    Corrected some typos/minor formatting errors: those you kindly identified and some few I came upon. Then decided I can't read that book again, threw up my hands and sent the MS out for proofreading. Currently crafting a table of contents and will publish an interim edition with a TOC while awaiting the return of the proofread manuscript. Once that's done and published, will appeal to the Kindle god to make the update available as a free download to previous purchasers, with email notification at Kindle's discretion. (All of this proceeds with glacial speed, though perhaps that's no longer a valid analogy for slowness?)

    Page numbers: Alas! I've no control over those. MS Word HTML files are what Kindle uses to publish its ebooks, and these must be submitted with page numbering turned off. ELDRIDGE is currently exclusive to Amazon, but the same requirement obtains at aggregators such as Smashwords.

    I'd love page numbers on my Kindle Fire, and certainly the programming can be done to make them appear consistent with whatever font size readers select. Perhaps they'll get to it, especially with Microsoft/Nook now having taken the field.

    Thank you again.

    Cheers,

    Steve

    ReplyDelete
  2. Steve, thanks for stopping by and for your comments..

    I did enjoy this book, so thanks for that

    As for page No's check out @callieshand, the lovely Jaye will sort out your formatting for you

    Aye Yours

    ReplyDelete

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