Thursday, 12 August 2010

The Prometheus Project - Steve White

The Prometheus Project
-Steve White

There have been many books that were, quite frankly, crap. There have been many books that promised what they then failed to deliver. There have been many books that started badly and then became great. There are very few books that are great all the way through.

Why that monologue? I honestly don’t know how to rate The Prometheus Project, by Steve White. It starts off extremely well, with a meeting between an American President and his successor – a man who embodies the worst of the Left. The President explains to his successor about the Project – a secret American effort to convince extraterrestrials that Earth is advanced enough to be left alone. In the course of his explanation, the President outlines a story about the Project.

Told in the first person, the main story involves a private detective unwillingly recruited onto the Project by the mysterious Mr Inconnu. Mr. Inconnu had arrived in a damaged but highly advanced craft in the 1940s with the information that he had escaped from a group of humans whom aliens had been studying. Earth had to convince them that it was united under American leadership – or it would become enslaved. Bob Devaney, the hero, becomes involved in a bid to catch a traitor who was selling humanity’s secrets to alien criminals.

So far so good. The story falls from then on. Instead of exploring the events in 1960 – only alluded to by the President – the story goes off on a tangent, one that is completely predicable. Halfway through the book, I knew how it would end – and I was right. This sort of plot has been done better.

The book picks up slightly towards the end, when the president and his successor, react to the news about the Project. The irony of the situation is never explicably pointed out, but the ending to that subplot is also predicable.

In short, The Prometheus Project had promise, but failed to live up to it. Buy paperback.


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