New author D. F. Lamont has a talent for action scenes that drew me right in to his science fiction YA tale, The Jinx. Stephen knows the exact moment his luck started turning bad because his bicycle is totaled in the first few pages. The accidents keep escalating in spectacular fashion until Stephen is in an auto accident in which his family members are seriously injured. Because he's come through with barely a scratch, Steven realizes all these bad things are happening because of him, so he runs away to protect his family. That's when things get really strange. When strange creatures stalk and attack the bus he's on, he knows he was right. Apparently rescued, Stephen awakes in a group of uniformed cult members who load him down with chaos theory with no regard to his science grade level. They clearly intend to use him in their sinister experiments, so he escapes with the help of Dedalus, a former cult member who teaches Stephen about his role in restoring balance to the universe with interesting machines and examples. The book culminates in a scene worthy of the biggest Hollywood blockbuster.
I was a little thrown off by the abrupt change between Stephen's basically normal though accident-prone world and the strange mountain he gets to by bus where the nasty creatures called Chaons pursue him with a mechanical relentlessness. But by the end of the story, I had read enough of the science to understand that even more random-seeming events are perfectly possible, even in our "normal" world. Stephen is a pleasant, everyboy character who leads us through a world in which anyone could believably become a hero.
The digital edition I received is bare-bones, with no cover, a small formatting error and a few type-o's. I'm willing to overlook that when I read for pleasure. If you're just looking for an exciting story with real science woven in expertly, then I highly recommend The Jinx.
The Jinx is available here in Kindle and paperback.
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