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Reviewed by Stefan Vucak for Readers' Favorite
An experimental ship crashes on Janus, a Saturn moon, but an alien ship is also there. James Hayden and his crew take out their new ship, ‘Gossamer Goose,’ to recover the wrecked ship and make contact with the aliens. When they get to Janus, there is no sign of the alien probe. They land on Janus, repair the damaged ship, and fly it to a holding orbit. They take ‘Gossamer Goose’ to investigate some mysterious lights on the other side of Janus, and find primitive life. Further investigation is to be done in subsequent missions. Departing Janus, the alien probe attacks and destroys ‘Goose’. The crew takes to the survival capsule and makes for the repaired ship, but the alien probe ejects the survival capsule with James and two of his crew before the ship is destroyed. How they all extricate themselves is worthy of a rollercoaster ride.
I love hard science fiction, and S.D. Falchetti has certainly delivered a hard sci fi story with Janus-2. The author has everything here: a recovery, an odd crew, a hostile – apparently – alien ship, disaster, and an ending which … but never mind. Readers will have to find out for themselves. Janus-2 is a well written story filled with enough technical and procedural jargon to satisfy any techie, because there is plenty of it in this read. There isn’t a whole lot of genuine emotional interaction, and the characters are fairly ordinary, but for readers who enjoy straightforward action and technology, Janus-2 will provide a diverting evening read. A good effort from S.D. Falchetti.