King of The Who?

The Macra Terror 1The Accidental Adventures of Mr Rail (Book 1): Blub

by Larry Appleseed

“You expect Blubs and Clackers to be dangerous, but you never expect a broom handle to hurt you, reasoned Master Galbage. The broom handle takes you by surprise.”

Kenneth, head of HR for a top secret observation post on the moon, responds to a frantic summons from Marvin, foil-hatted scientist and sole employee. They watch as Shub Niggurath pursues a snow-covered car down the street. Mr. Rail is driving said car to his first day at a new teaching position. When he arrives, the world as he knows it unravels. The administration wants to kill him, his kids don’t listen, and he’s expected to lead a field trip to another dimension. He struggles to survive as Kenneth and Marvin race back to Earth to save him. This is a zany Sci Fi Comedy in the vein of Douglas Adams or Terry Pratchett, with the world building and portal hopping of Hyperion. I thoroughly enjoyed it. I don’t really do series, but I’m going to buy the second one as soon as it hits Amazon.

Why I Chose This One

The cover lured me in. I really like minimalist artwork on covers. The first paragraph, though, hooked me. The prologue has a Men in Black vibe and teases some mysteries that develop later in the book.

What I Liked

  • World Fish (and everything on it). Similar to the Discworld-toting Great A’Tuin. Only this planet-sized creature is an biosphere in itself, closely intertwined with life, the economy, and politics of the ecosystems that cling to its scales.
  • Marvin and Kenneth. This was a fun comedic pair and their thread fleshed out the world building, placing Mr. Rail’s situation in a larger context.
  • If nothing else, this is a great parable about the confusion and terror of teaching your first class as a new teacher.

What I Didn’t

  • Throw marks. I know, I like the occasional typo. They make the novel more human. But this had enough that it was almost distracting.
  • Was that a Phantom Menace reference?
  • I found the ending a little abrupt. I still had a few unanswered questions. I realize Larry’s going to develop these in later books of the series, but I like it when books in series are self-contained.

Read This If You Like

  • The Macra from Dr. Who
  • Men in Black
  • Douglas Adams
  • Terry Pratchett

Buy The Accidental Adventures of Mr Rail (Book 1): Blub

Blub blub-blub, blubs!

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