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Incursion - Aleksandr Voinov 3.5 Totoros

Since the name Aleksandr Voinov popped up reguarly (as in all the time) in my feed, I stalk...checked his Goodreads author profile where I stumled over this little gem. What first caught my attention was the cover. With its blue hightech-thingy background and the DNA strand it is pretty frakking awesome, a real eye-catcher. And the synopsis was as intriguing as the cover. I'm a sucker for a good, not too strange sci fi story, and so I simply had no choice but to read this book.

Obviously Incursion was my first Voinov, and whoa, this man has a way with words... I'm still speechless. The writing is just amazing. He's like a painter who's not painting colors on canvas but words on a blank page. Pictorial language at its best. The Incursion world is so vivid, so vibrant, it downright springs in your mind like a living thing ^^ And when I say world I mean hustle and bustle, colors, odors, variety of sounds, you name it. It's all there, you can feel it, see it, smell it, hear it... and to convey all this with simple words is a skill the author can be proud of.

As for the story it's too bad it's not a full novel. It's an interesting plot with so much potential that is way to complex for being covered up in a short story.

The beginnig was awesome, I loved diving in Kyle's world, getting to know this flawed, almost depressive guy. He's a great character, reminded me a litte of this guy from Avatar (can't remember his name -.- ah, wait, it's Sully, right? Named after him: sully xD). Kyle is kind of deep and made a certain impression on me, so I could feel for him without feeling sorry for him, despite all of his dark brooding and sometimes hate-filled emotions. Am I making sense here? Whatever xD

When he got his new assignment and went finding a way to accomplish that mission, and then found ship and crew, I almost squealed. Sure, I did because of the hope and the energy radiating from Kyle and seeing him like that made me happy... but... but... mostly my almost-squeal was caused by my mental cinema that showed me one of my most favorite sci fi TV show crews :)))
Firefly Serenity Crew

Up to that point the story was well paced and well-narrated, and I really really liked Grimm, the ship's pilot/leader/whatever. My favorite character, however, was this Winter gal. Holy sweet reindeerbabies, how awesome is she? The author's imagination must have gone wild when he ~invented this figure :)))

Alas in the last third this book lost much of its appeal for me (and is one of the reasons why I wish this would be a real book instead of a short story). Something was missing, the last part seemd rushed and muddled, and there was too little chemistry between Kyle and Grimm for my liking. The sex scene was nice, but I wouldn't consider it necessary. Those words could've been better used for plot development. Because, honestly, the last part was pretty meh. In the end it was all too smooth, all too easy. What the hell happened with Kyle's hatred? Why wasn't he more conflicted about what he discovered? There was no struggling, just acceptance.

Don't get me wrong, the story line is a killer. I loved how it ended, I loved what happened. It's just... well, partially underdeveloped. It's still a gem, but not a flawless one that is a bit rough around the edges ;)