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The Sky: The World, by Jessica McHugh Book Review | SFReader.com
The Sky: The World, by Jessica McHugh Genre: Alternate History Publisher: Reliquary Press Published: 2011 Review Posted: 1/10/2015 Reviewer Rating:
Reader Rating: Not Rated
The Sky: The World, by Jessica McHugh
Book Review by Michael D. Griffiths
Have you read this book?
The Sky: The World is a short, but very intense and entertaining book, the kind you might like to read in one sitting if you had the chance. With summer heading toward us, this would be the perfect book for a trip to the beach or a vacation. Jessica McHugh takes us to a fantastic world, which for me brought to mind similar types of alternative realities created by Michael Moorcock, particularly in his Warlords of the Air series.
The book focuses on the Sherwood Six, a team of mechanics and pilots that have rejected the air force in favor of stunt flying. The team is led by the flamboyant Jack Racine. Things are going well enough for Jack. He enjoys his life of fame, women, and intoxicants until his brother's untimely death.
Once he begins to investigate not only the cause of his brother's death, but also unravels the mysteries his sibling was involved with, Jack quickly realizes that his playboy lifestyle might have to be set aside. He may have to replace his debauchery with loftier goals if he is to hope to succeed in not only avenging his brother, who he suspects was murdered, but perhaps even replacing him as an employee for the enigmatic Dr. Azaz.
The world where Jack and his friends live is far different from our own mostly as a result of the wondrous discoveries of the mysterious Dr. Azaz. The Doctor himself keeps hidden away and out of sight, but is single-handedly responsible for altering not only science, but the history of mankind. First, he developed a process where all women can conceive children on their own with the use of crystalline pools. This quickly becomes the norm and children born through copulation are looked on as inferiors.
More importantly for Jack and his fellows, the great Azaz also invented aircraft. But what would such a famous genius need with Jack's brother? And when the doctor summons Jack, what could he possibly want with a hedonistic person like him?
Ms. McHugh is inventive and full of surprises and takes the reader into a world that is hard to second guess and predict. Perhaps the largest complaint with her book is, that after all the time she takes to set up this amazing world, we find the adventure over too quickly. Also Jack's drug use could upset some readers if they were sensitive to that type of thing.
I would recommend this book to anyone that enjoys exploring new worlds and unraveling intricate plots. The book is very unique and I look forward to exploring more of what this author has to offer.
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