The Tar-Aiym Krang by Alan Dean Foster
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
My second Pip and Flinx novel was the first written in the series but it takes place right after book five. Confusing? Not really. I'm just reading them chronologically, so Flinx is only 17 here and he sure knows how to get into trouble!
What's most fascinating is how polished and fascinating and fast this tale is compared to the other one I had just read. It's the entry novel into the universe and I can see immediately how Alan Dean Foster hoisted himself into the SF field with such gusto and why it was popular enough to support fifteen novels. I like this one better than book 5, easily.
In fact, as a straight adventure, it's speedy.
As a science fiction full of interesting worlds and even more interesting alien species, it rocks.
Is it a hardcore SF novel ranking up with the most ambitious and best of the genre? No. But as light fun with a kid with a mysteriously powerful and/or unknown level of empathic telepathy, flexible moral compass in some circumstances but not in the ways that are really important, or simply... fun with mini-dragons... it's a real delight and an easy read.
It helps when we get spaceships and space battles, intrigue, planetary mysteries and ancient dead civilizations, and baddies who you *know* are bad. (So you don't feel bad when they get ripped to shreds) :)
This is a pure adventure and it is what it is. Fun. Not deep, just well-crafted fun. It has aged very well and I don't see any issues for enjoying it in any foreseeable future. :)
I can see why the author was chosen to pick up most of the official novelizations for Star Wars. He has the sense of wonder down pat. :)
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