Over a hundred years in the future, the moon has been colonized as the human race takes its first step into the stars.
Except not really. In many sci-fi novels, moon colonies are the basis of future scientific explorations and discoveries. Crater, by Homer Hickam, focuses on a different scenario. Miners process Helium-3, formed by solar winds, for nuclear fuel to power Earth. The author’s research helps ground the novel in real science and gives it a gritty, realistic feel. The colonies are described as “more Wild West than the Wild West,” populated by criminals and exiles. The worldbuilding is well done, described so that it fits with the story instead of interrupting it. The only area I find disappoint is the lack of description for the gillie.
The plot, on the other hand, lags a bit. While the tension is strong at points, the ending doesn’t seem to fit with the rest of the story, and I became confused about location after the drive ends. Some of the characters are interesting, but others are clichés—such as the ex-Prince of Wales, and the terms can be a bit confusing at points. Three Stars
One group I would heartily recommend this novel to is fans of space Western, such as Firefly. It has that stars-and-cowboy feeling.
I received a free copy of this book from Booksneeze but was not required to write a positive review.