Thursday, September 16, 2010

Guest Review: A Superior State of Affairs by Tom Maringer

My mom has provided a review for us today! She bumped into the author who, in addition to being a writer, is a geologist and fantasy coin and button maker. My mom collects buttons and rivets so she was very interested in Tom's work. But Mr. Maringer's book isn't about buttons... Here's Mom's review:

A Superior State of Affairs by Tom Maringer is a sci-fi mystery set in the year 2017 in a post-United States now know as the “North American Federation”.  Geologist “Digger” Puttonen has developed an invention that could change the world.  Arne Harjaala is an old drunk known for telling tales about the “old days” of mining.  But one evening when Digger hears Arne mention a 1906 mining disaster in which Arne is rescued by a “blue light”, Digger's interest is piqued.  That same night, Digger and Arne must fight for their lives, surviving a raging blizzard and the hostile pursuit of men out to silence Arne for good.  And, it seems like the whole world is set on procuring Digger and his invention in their quest for world-dominance.

This story is full of science and science fiction, intrigue, geography, and a cast of characters that runs the gamut from spies to Indians, assassins to politicians, and telepaths to psychopaths.  A lot of action is packed into a few short wintry days, along with a lesson in all things mining, which I found interesting and out of the norm from my reading regimen.  Before delving into the story, it would be helpful for the reader to get acquainted with the Glossary of Terms found in the appendix.

I enjoyed the basically good-guy image of Digger, and could relate to his “fight for the right”.  Each chapter is written from the point of view of just a few of the books' many characters, which is how so much action can take place over the space of a few days, in roughly 500 pages.

Themes such as “Big brother is watching you”, humanity vs. technology, and personal freedoms vs. the “common good” all intertwine in this imaginative thriller.  Some strong language and sexual situations make me suggest the 17+ crowd would be an appropriate audience. 
Publisher: AuthorHouse, 2004     
Source: purchased directly from the author via this website (you can get a signed copy this way).
Pages: 497     Additional Info on Tom Maringer 

Thanks for the review Mom!

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