Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Book Review - "Robot Wars-Death Trap"

Last week, Tyndale sent me their book, "Robot Wars - Death Trap" by Sigmund Brouwer, and asked me to review it. Here's a little about the author:

Sigmund Brouwer
Whether writing youth or adult fiction, Sigmund Brouwer is a best-selling author of more than 40 fast-paced novels. Some of his works encourage young reluctant readers into the world of books, and others provide adults with riveting tales. His youth series include Mars Diaries; Short Cuts Extreme Sports; Lightning on Ice; CyberQuest; The Winds of Light; Dr. Drabble: Genius Inventor; and The Accidental Detectives. His adult fiction titles include Out of the Shadows, Morning Star, Thunder Voice, Double Helix, and Blood Ties.

Sigmund's diverse background surfaces in the characters of his books as he inspires kids to get excited about reading. He grew up in Red Deer, Alberta, Canada, and developed an early interest in sports like hockey, racquetball, and biking. His poor performance in high school English classes led him to receive a degree in commerce from Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and not to pursue writing. When a professor in his undergraduate English course encouraged him to write, Sigmund did, and he eventually received a degree in journalism from Carleton College in Ottawa. After publishing several articles for U.S. and Canadian magazines, he turned to writing books for kids reluctant to read.

In 1993, he cofounded The Young Writers' Institute with home education expert and author Debra Bell and conducts writing camps and seminars for more than 10,000 children every year. His commitment to his faith is an integral part of his creative goals, and Sigmund cites C. S. Lewis as one of his greatest writing influences. Although there is no overt Christian agenda in his novels, the deliberate underpinning of morality and redemption make his books more than tools of escape. He quotes C. S. Lewis, "There is no Christian way to write, just as there is no Christian way to boil an egg."

Sigmund is married to Christian recording artist Cindy Morgan; the couple has two daughters. He writes five pages per day on his laptop, whether he is in an airport, hotel, or dividing his time between family homes in Red Deer and Nashville.

Robot Wars - Death Trap (Book One) is about a teen-age boy named Tyce and his life on Mars in an experimental community. Tyce is a virtual reality specialist in that he can play very well and has since he was very young. He also enjoys looking at the galaxy from the special telescope they have in the community. Soon these simple pleasures take a back seat to the life threating issue of the community losing oxygen - and fast!

I really enjoyed this book. It kept you guessing with each page and just when I thought things were resolved, another issue would crop up. There were also many surprising revelations in the book about Tyce and other members of the community.

I'm sure this book is geared more for the tween/teen set, but honestly, I really enjoyed the book and am anxious to read Book Two to know what happens next to Tyce, his family and this experimental community on Mars!

I also like that the book talked about God in a very real way. It's very real in it's sense of what God means to us and how we can turn to Him. The author made it a normal part of the story and it didn't feel forced.

I highly recommend this book to others. It's definitely a science fiction book, but I really believe that anyone would enjoy it, whether they enjoy the science fiction genre or not.

You can find a link to this book in my Amazon widget on my sidebar. I never put books there that I haven't read and truly enjoyed. You can click on the book and it will take you to Amazon where you'll find this book and others in the series. I hope you'll read this book, too. Trust me, you'll really enjoy it!

God bless you - Julie

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