December 11, 2013

Review: Nebador Book 7 - The Local Universe by J. Z. Colby

So, now we've been through The Test, have made the Journey and survived the Selection. We've been succesful in our Flight Training, went Back to the Stars and met the Star Station. It's time to meet the Local Universe!

I've mentioned before that I  LOVE the Nebador series. And it's very well known to book bloggers that the more you love a book or series, the harder it is to review it, because you feel like you're not making it sound as interesting or cool as it really is, you feel like you're not doing the book any good. So I've been writing this review for a few months now... Not a good idea, as you start to forget what exactly you wanted to tell about the book and just keep that fuzzy feeling that it was such an awesome book. But let's try.

We have two major plots during this book and they are slightly different from previous ones. Now, we have our crew reasonably integrated with the Nebador lifestyle, but we need them to grow up as beings, to evolve, in a way. One of the "light" beings (evolved beings!) is going to watch and be with our crew, it's been decided, and interestingly, they are being assigned to advanced training before it's usual.

Their first mission takes them to try and locate a ship that has been drifting for several hundred years, there's supposed to be 3 of the ships and the crew's mission is to find it and then "deal" with it, according to what they find. With them, a whole group of "bugs" will be the experts and passengers of the Manessa Kwi, small and regular size, with mates and groups not so much like theirs, they will have to learn to respect and deal with people much different than them, for a long time (unlike the shorter interactions they've had so far) This is a mission that will teach them much, even if Ilika has explained some things before, now they will see in practice and they will be able to deal with life, death, loss, understanding of Bad and Evil. It is different when you feel it, of course. We'll see a lot of growth here, when they realize some things happen for a reason and not everything and everyone is meant to get help.

The second mission is very different from the first, when we follow 4 common children/teens, into this strange school that is different from anything in their world, called Lyceum. It's a school/monastry/religion-with-all-religions/lifestyle that teaches everyone can be responsible, respectful and that everone has gifts that can be used towards the greater good. Not unlike Nebador, it seems, and that's why, from the whole world, this school is the only one that actually meets Nebador people. They aren't informed of how's, where's and what's but they know they are from space and that they are special beings.

Our crew goes through an interesting mission here, they don't know what it is. They are supposed to find out. Also, the crew is without Ilika, which is the first time ever since they got together in their homeworld. Ilika disguises himself as a potential student at Lyceum, while the rest of the crew will show themselves to the staff as the citizens of Nebador they are, so they can work in different ways to try and find out what their mission is and accomplish it.

Obviously, they do. But the interesting isn't only the mission itself, but how they get there. They end up influencing the people outside their small group, learn more things and eventually find their mission where they weren't looking. Manessa Kwi's crew, in a way, is used to saving people or just helping them, in whatever way they see as saving. But sometimes, what a person needs isn't the same thing you believe is help. And that's actually hard to spot, empathy isn't as easy, when the person you are trying to help sees life in a different way than you do.

Again, another masterpiece by J. Z. Colby, showing children and young adults (and some older adults), that it is possible to live a better life, that a better society is possible - if only people would help - and that you should be the first one to do it. J. Z., if only every teen would read your books, I'm sure we would have a better world in a couple generations' time.

Find out where you can buy Book 7 - The Local Universe in several formats: here.
Read my reviews for Book 1, Book 2, Book 3, Book 4, Book 5 and Book 6