Terminator Salvation: Trial by Fire by Timothy Zahn

(8.5/10)

For those of you who have only watched the Terminator movies this book is where to begin reading the continuing story.

Timothy Zahn is one of those writers that could be given any existing science fiction story and take it to places that the original creator could not have imagined. Like he did with Star Wars (Dark Force Rising) Zahn jumps straight in and drags you by the collar into the thick of the action. And for the next 310 pages he does not let up or let go. Whilst keeping track of the ongoing development of the young Kyle Reese, Zahn takes us on a mission back to the desert. To the laboratory where Marcus, the terminator from the recent movie, was made: a mission that wiped out many of John Connor’s resistance fighters.

It is there among the fading light of day that one of the crew spots a heavy cable protruding from the earth. They decide to check it out in the morning but the laboratory is not as dead as it is believed to be. From here on the story picks ups its pace and never stop moving.

Timothy Zahn delivers a brilliant, vibrant story filled with character that he has injected with life. Through the ensuing battles with T-600’s, 700’s and few surprises, Zahn brings you in up close and personal to the tough and gritty people in a way that only he can.

Crisp concise dialogue flows between the characters of all levels bringing a believable community of survivors to life. I do not think that we have seen the last of anyone that lived to tell the tale of the day that the Theta’s came to town.

“We’re going to let them go, aren’t we?” Hope asked.

“That’s up to Connor,” Oxley told her. “He’s the one they seem out to get.” He looked at Lajard. “And since Connor’s the one who came up with the plan to take down the T-700’s, I’d say he’s proved his credentials.”

A thoroughly enjoyable read that I can wholeheartedly recommend to anyone that likes a bit of sci-fi.

Timothy Zahn has been writing science fiction for over 30 years writing eight of the best Star Wars stories with a ninth on the way. Among his best works are the Quadrail and Dragonback series.

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