Review of "The Movie Maker," a single story in a collection by Chris Turner

A collection of ten gripping speculative fiction tales:

. . . a gang of teens discover clues to their heritage and unsettling facts about their backward world
. . . a university student develops an innovation to revolutionize the holographic film industry
. . . alien pirates compel a pilot to know what it means to be alien
. . . a hybrid man struggles for freedom on a mining planet
. . . solar power in the new age is in jeopardy
. . . and more!

Brace yourself for an elaborate food metaphor because I really feel this is the best way to describe how I feel about "The Movie Maker."  Here it goes:

When you read a good book it's like having a three course meal.  You know you're in it for the long haul and a lot has to go in how each courses will mix with each other.  A good short story, on the other hand, needs to be like a perfect one-bite snack.  A lot of thought and care needs to go into what you're putting on that one cracker because it has to taste both complete and be memorable.

As I read this story I felt like it was a rushed dining experience.  The type where the food was good but the sit-down experience was totally cancelled out by the need to get me in an out of that restaurant as fast as possible.  Turner has an engaging style of writing but basically took a concept that should have been fleshed out and crammed it into a few thousand words.

If you are a consistant reader of this blog you will know that it is significant when I say: this would have been way better as a novel.  With large jumps in the plot's timeline, switching between moments of intense detail and then no detail at all, plus a kind of half-hearted romance... I have to wonder if maybe the author was indecisive about what kind of story he really wanted to make.

Overall, Turner has a lot of potential as a speculative fiction storyteller.  I would definitely recommend checking his work out.  His writing and ideas are solid there just needs to be... more.

3/5 stars
Reviewed by Alain Gomez

Buy this collection on Amazon or B&N.


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