Thursday, July 29, 2010

A Review of Coyote: A Novel of Interstellar Exploration by Allen M. Steele

This review is dedicated to Jane, his wife...

Coyote: A Novel of Interstellar Exploration by Allen M. Steele

A Review by dj Bowen


The story opens in the year 2070.   At some point after the present time and before the beginning of this novel America has been fighting revolutions.  On it’s own soil.  Again.  In 1776 British colonists who had fled religious oppression and settled the new world rebelled against King George III and England.  Then the revolution known as the civil War, or, the War Between the States.  The South rebelling against the North and the oppression of the industrial north over the agricultural south.  The northern army was led by General Ulysses S. Grant.  And the South was led by General Robert E. Lee.  Lee surrendered to Grant in Appomattox in April 1865 and for the next two hundred years, America struggled to rebuild herself.  Resentment of the north by the south did not dissipate entirely though.  America continued to struggle with prejudice and anger and while it seemed for a time the wounds had been healed, we discover in this novel what could happen if those wounds manage to remain open and continue to fester. 


In “Coyote: A Novel of Interstellar Exploration”, the first of two books in the “coyote Rising” series which first debuted in the Isaac Asimov science fiction magazine, author Allen M. Steele explores in a must read science fiction thriller, an America torn apart by another revolution.  The country is fragmented, and a new socialist government is installed.


In spite of the social upheaval, scientists and astronomers have continued the exploration of space under the thumb of an oppressive and brutal  government.  Far away, in a distant corner of deep space, they have discovered a universe that contains a small planet that has the possibility of supporting human life.


The new United Republic of America wants to be the first to reach this new planet and claim it for the expansion  of socialism to the far reaches of space.


To accomplish this in an economy already on the brink of collapse after decades of war, the government turns it’s back on the masses and pours trillions of dollars into the development of a star ship capable of traveling a distance of 46 light years and carrying with it a crew of government controlled scientists, engineers and civilian colonists to claim coyote, the name given the planet in question,  for the U.R.A. .


a band of freedom fighters with the resolve of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, and the other leaders  of the first American revolution refuse to capitulate and soon a group of people born into a generation where it seems the south has risen again from the ashes of the civil war, led by Robert E. Lee, great grandson of the famous General of the confederacy hijack the United Republic Star ship Alabama, with it’s on board shuttle the URSS Jessie Helms and URSS George Wallace, taking over a mission that was supposed to spread socialism to far and distant galaxies and instead turn the mission into a flight for freedom.


Captain Robert E. Lee, commander of the URSS Alabama is the mastermind of a complex and secret plan to preserve freedom.  He, along with several other high ranking government officials who secretly dream of the old America, have decided to commandeer the starship and replace the government controlled colonists with a band of free thinking civilian scientists, engineers, doctors and educators who have been labeled dissident intellectuals by the government with hopes of  turning coyote into a land of the free and a home  for  the brave.


The more people that are involved in a conspiracy proportionately increases the risk of detection and betrayal.  And there are a good many people involved in this conspiracy.    The captain, the chief science officer, shuttle pilots, scientists and engineers who developed the technology that made the starship possible and many more.  And with each of these participants, the level of suspense as the critical moment draws near is honest to goodness edge of your seat non stop page turning stuff.


Will they succeed?  Will freedom fly or will socialism continue to strangle the hope and dreams of people who once lived free?  Or will there plans be thwarted simply because too many people have to be involved for a hijacking of this magnitude. 


This novel is a captivating and plausible combination of science fiction, political fiction, social fiction adventure, daring and even a little romance.


The author does a superb job of weaving high tech and low tech together in a seamless tapestry that will leave you spellbound.  this book is nothing like Star Trek, Star Wars, The Jetsons or Lost In Space.  It is real.  Or I should say, it seems real.  Check it out and see for yourself.  Thinking really is the best way to travel!


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Library of congress Annotation

Coyote: A Novel of Interstellar Exploration

Steele, Allen M. Read by Alec Volz. Reading time 15 hours 42 minutes.

Science Fiction

Earth, 2070. Just before the Alabama launches, Captain Robert E. Lee hijacks the spaceship with over one hundred men, women, and children aboard. After 230 years in biostasis, passengers and crew awaken at a distant moon named Coyote and start a new colony. Some violence and some strong language.


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Dj and Lucky

Note:  I am a human being, not a robotic spammer.  I do this out of my love for my family, my guide dog and my music.  You are receiving this message because I have come to consider you a friend of mine and a friend of Music for Sight.  If I am mistaken and you would just as soon not hear from me, simply hit reply and type the words “remove me” or something to that effect and I will remove your email address.  Again, I do all this manually.  I do not use any type of robotic spam software.  So, if you do receive future messages after requesting removal, simply reply again.  While I often mess up once on a thing, I rarely do so twice.

Dj Bowen

Music for Sight


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