“Matthew, so few humans achieve their destiny before leaving this world. You have that chance.” Matthew Peters had spent the last seven years creating the ultimate online comic hero. He never dreamed that he would find the true hero within himself.
Last month I took part in the Blog Tour-de-Force and one of the free books I received was Excelsior by George H. Sirois. Excelsior is a piece of young adult science fiction, and normally I do not read young adult fiction of any sorts because I get bored with the simplicity of the writing and the story, not to mention that so often there is a healthy dose of teen angst involved, but the little quote from the the smashwords website intrigued me and I’ll freely admit to the fact that as a long time comic book lover the mere word excelsior made me curious. I read George’s blog and I could appreciate how much time he had spent in the creation so I thought I would give it a try.
Excelsior is definitely the end result of a labor of love. The characters and history poured into the 70,000 plus words is plainly evident. There is no confusing which character is which as the story unfolds and make no mistake, this is a very character driven bit of fiction. The story only has a couple of different locations, but they are all distinct and well described so that you get the sense of each space and who lives and works there. George says in the afterword that he spent fifteen years working on the main character and his story and the effort really shines through.
The story revolves around Matthew, a junior in highschool who is far more interested in working on his web comic Excelsior than he is in doing his school work or paying attention in class. When his comic draws the attention of a beautiful scientist working under a deadline and two nightmarish alien villains reawaken after millenia of imprisonment, his hold world gets turned upside down as he learns that the world of his imagination is far more real than he could have dreamed and that he is the key to the survival of his own world as well as the world of Excelsior!
Excelsior is definitely aimed toward the young adult reader, but it is well written enough that even adult fans of science fiction will enjoy it. I’ll definitely be saving this one for my boys to read when they get a littler bit older and to re-read on my own.
- Happy 88th Birthday Stan Lee! Excelsior! (geektyrant.com)