In a continuing effort to promote serial science fiction, I have a new entry – The Forgotten. A man finds himself walking in a park, with no memory of how he came to be there or who he is. He doesn’t even know his own face. Clues to his daily life emerge only to find that he is being pursued by tenacious hunters. He finds out he is involved in a conflict spanning multiple universes, a religious cult, and a guild that guards passages between the universes. His only ally is a woman he doesn’t know who claims to be a “friend of convenience”.
This is a work in progress by Clint Westgard. Mr. Westgard has several books published by “Lost Quarter Books” and they are available through Amazon, Kobo and Smashwords for a reasonable price. Mr. Westgard is a writer of fantasy, science fiction and mysteries.
What I like:
This story is action packed. Each concise chapter has tension and new things are revealed. The chapters are short (around 1000 words each). I was able to get through 11 chapters quickly in discovering this mystery. He has built up a complex story involving different antagonists, locations, and events. His outline or guide to manage all these moving parts must be amazing. Through the eleven chapters I have read, the story is holding together remarkably well. The hapless and confused storyteller stumbles through the first chapters as fragments of his memory and pieces of information slowly fill in blanks. Mr. Westgard has tight sentences and a fast pace.
The story is written in the first person. Perhaps this is why there is so little dialog. We have the running mental dialog of the story teller. Character development is thin in the early chapters, but this may be by design. The teller’s primary goal is to survive from one event to the next and so there is little time to find out about his pursuers or those who assist him. He needs to figure out himself and in discovering himself, he is hoping everything will fall into place. Mr. Westgard’s true gift is writing the action and moving the story forward. One will not be encumbered by pithy dialog here.
What could be better:
I have read the first eleven chapters. I get the mystery and fog surrounding the story teller. But there is little motivation discussed around those who help him or those who chase him. I suppose that will all be revealed eventually, but there aren’t even hints or allegations. Also the story teller occasionally makes significant conclusions without a whole lot of data. How does he know a Seeker is saying something on the other side of the door?, How does he know a woman standing at the side of the room is key to his predicament? Maybe we will find out he has some special connection that allows this superpower, but these are pretty big leaps for a man who doesn’t recognize his own face.
I have mentioned in other blogs and I will mention it here. Navigation is a challenge. I had to scroll through the blog to the first entry (found here “The Forgotten – part one”). My method became going to the archive months and using that as my navigation. Danu SciFi Shorts had created the Story So Far which is a great way to get to the desired chapter without having to create pages for each blog entry.
Overall, I recommend this. The writing is tight. The action is paced well. The story is complex enough to justify the many chapters. One is easily drawn into the story. It is a good read, especially for those who like their lunch time reading action packed, plot heavy and in small bites