Review: Ruabon (Tales of Lost Solace #4), by Karl Drinkwater


Welcome to Tecant.

Nothing ever happens here.

Until today.

Ruabon Nadarl is just another low-ranking member of the scan crew, slaving away for the UFS which “liberated” his homeworld. To help pass the time during long shifts he builds secret personalities into the robots he controls. Despite his ingenuity, the UFS offers few opportunities for a better life.

Then Ruabon detects an intruder on the surface of a vital communications tower.

He could just report it and let the deadly UFS commandos take over, while Ruabon returns to obscurity.

Or he could break UFS laws and try to capture the intruder himself. For the UFS, only the outcome matters, not the method. If his custom-programmed drones can save the day, he’ll be a hero.

And if he fails, he’ll be dead.

Purchase Link –

My Review

Thanks to Rachel for organising the blog tour and for my ebook copy of this novella. I’ve reviewed Karl’s novels and novellas previously and I’m pleased to read this one too. It took about an hour.

Ruabon is a lowly cadet in the UFS, overseeing his home planet. Since the UFS arrived the people of Tecent have not had a good time but Ruabon does his job because he doesn’t have much other choice. When an anomaly occurs he realises that they are under attack and takes the initiative.

But nothing is what it seems.

This takes place during Chasing Solace and is a section that was removed from the Chasing Solace manuscript for pacing reasons. As a stand alone story it certainly doesn’t suffer from pacing issues and the added attention given to it as a separate narrative has allowed the author to expand on the characters, setting, and emotional feel of the piece. The underlying tension of quotas and automated management without human intervention is an employee’s nightmare, yet it is a fact of life for some people. The UFS and Genitors are frightening in their control and ever present threat to dissenters – people who are disappeared for questioning anything. Drinkwater gets the tone of menace and desperation just right.

Author Bio –

Karl Drinkwater writes thrilling SF, suspenseful horror, and contemporary literary fiction. Whichever you pick you’ll find interesting and authentic characters, clever and compelling plots, and believable worlds.

Karl has lived in many places but now calls Scotland his home. He’s an ex-librarian with degrees in English, Classics, and Information Science. He also studied astrophysics for a year at university, surprising himself by winning a prize for “Outstanding Performance”.

When he isn’t writing he loves guitars, exercise, computer and board games, nature, and vegan cake. Not necessarily in that order.

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