Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Being - T.R. Mousner



Title: Being
Author: T.R. Mousner
Genre: Sci-Fi
Published: 2011
Formats: Ebook

Available at:
Amazon
Amazon UK

"Being" is T.R. Mousner's debut YA novel and I managed to get a copy through a blog giveaway that I won. I have to admit I had never heard of it before, however as Sci-Fi is my staple and the synopsis interested me I was pretty happy when I won. The novel I got turned out to be an enjoyable Sci-Fi adventure with an underlying message regarding how we treat our planet and each other.

The story is basically about the alien EBN who crashes on Earth, a planet believed to be constantly shrouded in chaos and war. We follow her trials and tribulations as she tries to survive, learn the ways of humanity and remain secret whilst she awaits rescue. The story is told from the point of view of EBN herself, as well as a human teenage boy named Shale who lives on the California trailer Park that EBN is hiding on and EBN's brother, Aix who is still on their home planet wondering what has happened to his sister. There is a little more depth to the novel than this though as there is also an over-arching plot that develops in regards to why EBN has to wait so long for any rescue. The ending manages to close out most of the current plot issues whilst creating enough of a cliff-hanger regarding the over-arching plot that I am eagerly awaiting the sequel to come.

The book was well written and I was quite surprised when I read the last page and realised I had spent nearly the whole day glued to its pages!! The whole thing flows very naturally and this was probably why I got so engrossed. I enjoyed the way that the author used the three characters to tell the story from different viewpoints as this enabled us to slowly learn about the characters and what they really were about. There were two aspects that I especially enjoyed in the novel, the first was the fact that the sections from EBN's viewpoint showed an opinion on our world that is different from the norm and this was a rather interesting and eye-opening experience. The second was that we get to learn of EBN's home planet through her brother Aix's eyes as he tries to understand what has happened to his sister. Their customs and how they live day-to-day is brought out in a clever and engaging manner.

In regards to the characters, I found that they were all very varied and interesting. All three of the main characters though are well-developed and expanded upon as you read the story, I think most people will like all of them for varying reasons. I have to admit that I did find EBN herself to be almost too kind, but she is an alien so I just accepted she wasn't expected to come across like a "real" person. I did think that her determination, kindness, respect and resolve she shows throughout the book are good models for any teen who may read this novel.

One thing to note is that the novel comes across as being quite strong on the environmental front. The author uses real world occurrences to show the issues with our planet's health and the way an "outsider" views what we are doing to our home. The author has also created an alien race that is very different to our own; this race of beings makes big issues out of the environment, the treatment of animals etc. Therefore, if you are the sort of person who believes that there is an environmental conspiracy out there to trick you all into stopping buying gas guzzling SUV's etc, I suspect you may not enjoy this novel very much.

To summarise, I think that this book is a superb read; T.R. Mousner creates her scenes wonderfully and really pulls you in. It is filled with interesting characters and I think the story will appeal to both those who love of Sci-Fi and those who tend to stay away.