Monday, December 09, 2019

Imminent Domain (Stygian Menace, #1) by Henry McAndrews

Imminent Domain (Stygian Menace Book 1)Imminent Domain by Henry McAndrews
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

When 16-year-old Evan Trystan awoke from his Simulated Reality-distributed studies, he expected to see a crew of over 200 people manning the generational spaceship, Sydney. What he found instead was a nightmare: the crew missing – left behind on a small planet when the ship was contaminated by gamma rays, their companion ships nowhere in sight, 240,066 people including his parents still in deep stasis, and he without the medical knowledge to safely awaken them. Oh, and as the ship approached the nearest habitable planet, he suddenly found himself smack in the middle of a war between two scientifically-advanced alien races.

Knowing he needed help to keep his fellow travelers alive, he descended to the planet to meet with the inhabitants, the alien race that had protected him thus far, the Enilingu shravat. Greeted by an alien doctor, Dar, and his daughter, Ynayilsaruviga, and reassured that they will assist him, he is shocked to discover the Sydney has abandoned him there on the planet.

Before he and Yna can come up with a plan to reunite Evan and the Sydney, the other alien race, the Skukulkang or Skuk, break through the En’s planetary defenses and invade the planet. The two escape the Skuk on the ground, procure a shuttle from the closest base, and flee the planet just in time to see the En home world destroyed. Now they must elude discovery by the Skuk and get back to the Sydney before they run out of oxygen and luck.

Imminent Domain is the first book in the middle-grade science fiction series, Stygian Menace, by Henry McAndrews. This book has non-stop action, good “good guys,” bad “bad guys,” and others that you just aren’t sure about their loyalties. And with the presence of the Simulated Reality Unit, you can never be quite sure if what is happening is actually happening or a simulation. This is a book the entire family can enjoy and would make a good one to share as a read-aloud. I think even the most reluctant readers would find this a page-turner as well.

(At this time, there is a second book available, Margin of Error, which continues Evan’s story. The author points out that he wrote Imminent Domain for his own children and since its publication, they’ve, of course, matured. This second book contains heightened action intended for a little older audience: 10 and above.)

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