Perhaps I'm just not cut out to be a critic. I read for enjoyment and for the fantasy, and every book I've read to date has delivered those things in "spades". The Azure Key is no exception. Like Hayden Bradford, Trevor Schmidt is also an author I've come into contact with through the Twitter group #promocave. I was therefore quite excited and keen to read and review his book.
The Azure Key is the first book in what appears to be a trilogy called The Corsair Uprising. The next book in the series is called Nightstalkers and was published in March of this year, with the third being called Deathwish which I assume is currently a work in progress. In addition to this Trevor has written other books, all available on Amazon: Memory Leak, The Sword Maker's Seal, Symbiote, and Replica - a short story.
Published, I assume by Trevor himself, at 244 pages it is a good substantial read that I was able to complete in one Sunday sitting. Now, I'm a bit old-school and I don't get all the many and varied genres that get tossed around these days. It seems like there is a genre to cover just about every book ever written. I'd never even heard of "steampunk" or indeed "dystopian" before, until I joined Promocave, and as for a "space opera", what exactly is that? Jesus Christ superstar, meets Star Wars? Look, you can call it what you will, but The Azure Key is plain and simple, in my mind - A Science Fiction story. That have been said, it is an EXCELLENT science fiction story.
I used to read a lot of Science Fiction as a kid, especially Heinlen and Herbert, but as an adult I've tended to veer away from the world of space and the cosmos - much to my own detriment I suspect. The Azure Key is a good, old fashioned tale of three people caught up in a set of circumstances beyond their control. The "hero" for the want of a better word, Liam Kidd, is your typical hard-man mercenary (freelancer), with a heart of gold and a true sense of justice, despite his tough-man demeanor. The "love interest", Saturn Vera is of course beautiful, but as tough and fiery as Liam, as she well displays early on in the story. Together with Ju-Long, the trio escape an attack on the asteroid mine they are working on by shooting through a wormhole to the other side of the galaxy where humans have "never" been before
I suppose I have to mention the one TINY negative even though it didn't detract from the story at all. I discovered I think it was four typos or word juxtaposition errors in the first three chapters. My initial thoughts were; "Oh no, a self-edited book - maybe it's full of errors." Remembering well how badly my own book was "self-edited" I steeled myself to look for more, but I was pleasantly surprised. There was only one more error, late in the book, but that was it. As I said, none of that detracted from my pleasure in reading this book.
Did it serve the purpose of making me want to read the rest of the series. Absolutely it did! I'm not going over the top here - it's not award-winning literature, but what it is, is a damn good read and I would urge everyone who likes a good science fiction yarn to go and get a copy. It's available on Amazon at the ridiculously low price of only $2.99. I promise you won't regret it.
My rating for "The Azure Key" - a good, solid 5 stars. Well done Trevor!
Pick it up here: