Oct 8, 2012

Book Review–Flight 404 / The Hunt for Red Leicester by Simon Petrie


Flight 404/ The Hunt for Red Leicester is a new release from Peggy Bright Books.  A science fiction novella double, it’s a curious mix that showcases the divergent talents of Simon Petrie.

Flight 404 is a serious and compelling tale of a transgender pilot, sent to lend help to a search and rescue mission.  Her ship’s trajectory takes her back to the home world she escaped.  She must solve a mystery, and face relationships long abandoned.

I am tempted to label it hard sci-fi with heart, but it does contain some hand-wavium around faster than light travel (for the purists out there). It gets “harder” around the limitations on communications and in system travel.

Sufficed to say, space is dangerous and big but the real danger always seems to have humanity involved.

I really enjoyed this story, felt that that the character was an honest and positive representation of a transgender person and I was captive to the mystery and story right until the end. 

More in this vein Mr Petrie please.

The Hunt for Red Leicester is cheese to Flight 404’s chalk. It’s science fiction comedy along the same lines as Douglas Adams or Simon Haynes. 

Our hero Gordon Mamon has awoken, bound and gagged in the ladies toilet on the Space Hotel/ Space Elevator Skyward 270. Oh and there’s a dead Cheese magnate, Lord Havmurthy in one of the cubicles.  It’s up to Mamon to solve the case as hotel police are preoccupied.  There’s a solid plot that the comedy hangs off and the puns are groan worthy. I loved it.  A perfect counterbalance to the heavier tale told in Flight 404.

You mileage may vary, but I felt that the length of this piece was spot on.  Short enough to appreciate the humour and not grow tired of it.  If more of this writing is your thing Simon also has a separate collection titled The Gordon Mamon Casebook.

These novellas were provided free of charge by the author.

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