Julie Davis's Reviews > Crater

Crater by Homer Hickam
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's review
May 01, 2012

really liked it
Read from April 30 to May 04, 2012

Crater Trueblood is an orphan and helium 3 miner on the moon, 100 years in the future. This coming of age story features an annoying best friend, a pretty tomboy, and a sidekick—Crater's gillie, a sentient and sometimes insubordinate clump of slime mold cells. Crater is chosen by "the Colonel" for a mysterious mission because he feels Crater may succeed where others have failed. All Crater has to do is travel to the capital city, pick up a package and deliver it to the Colonel. That sounds almost too easy and, of course, it is. Along the way we get to see other places on the moon, meet memorable characters, and learn about Crater's ingenuity. As with many of these stories the journey teaches Crater as much, if not more, than finishing his quest.

I requested this book from Amazon Vine because the gillie was an intriguing concept. I am pleased to say that it was a totally justified decision because the gillie rose far above the "slime mold cells" description by being rather charming and a bit of a know-it-all.

Crater made me feel the way I did when I could sink into the Heinlein juveniles for a rattling good story. This author shows original thinking in such details as the way they bioengineer space suits for outside Moon working, which kept me interested in more than just the adventure. Overall it was a great read and one that left me wishing the sequel was available.

I was interested to note that a few times there was prayer in the book and then I noticed that the publisher is known for their Christian books. However, the book didn't come off that way at all. It was just a rattling good adventure.

In fact, one of my favorite parts was actually a commentary on prayer which made me laugh aloud.


Teller pointed at the woman. "It was your stupidity that killed Tilly." He cut his eyes back to Crater. "Say a prayer for her, Crater."

Crater didn't know why the captain wanted him to say a prayer, but he gave it some thought and said, "Dear Lord, I didn't know Tilly, but I hope You'll take her into heaven. She messed up here at the last but that doesn't matter now, not to her and maybe not to You either."

"I said say a prayer, not write an editorial," Teller growled.

The gillie jumped in. "For dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return. Dust to dust, ashes to ashes, blessed be the Lord thy God who loves thee still. Amen and good-bye."

Teller stared at the gillie, then said, "Well, at least that thing's got some sense."
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Reading Progress

05/01/2012 page 45
05/03/2012 page 280
88.0% "In some ways this is basic, straight forward juvenile sf on the moon. And in others, the author continues to surprise me. Also, I enjoy a sense of humor that includes a real space cowboy (and his horse) on the moon. I'm just sayin' ..."
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