(This review may contain spoilers).
This was one book I read originally years ago, but recently decided to re-read the series. And even though there were parts of it that were cliched, it remains one of my favourite science fiction books.
One of my favourite parts of this book was the friendship that formed between David and Bigman. While David did seem like a character who was a bit too good to be true, there were problems he had… and I enjoyed seeing glimpses of his relationship with his honorary uncles, even though the book was really too short to allow me to see much of his history, apart from what was stated in the narration. At the same time, the reflections of David’s past made me feel a lot of sympathy for him as a child.
I thought it was really good to see something of how the food poisoning would affect the residents of Earth, especially considering just how many people were still on Earth. Even though the information about Mars was outdated, I was able to suspend my disbelief enough to picture a lot of what had happened on the planet. I enjoyed seeing the effects of the gravity change and how different the culture on Mars was.
I did think that David could have come up with a better story than he did when he first went to Mars. While it was good to see that there were conflicts between him and many of the Mars workers on the farm he joined, it did seem fairly obvious who the bad guys were… or at least some of them. It would have been good to see a bit more of the world in general, but I did like seeing some of the technology used, both on Earth and Mars. I would have liked a bit more background on the things like emotions being linked to exposing the colourless tattoo, for example.
I really liked the opportunity to see what the real natives of Mars were like and it was also interesting to see how the communication through minds worked. And the Space Ranger itself was a really interesting idea, with an air of mystery added that I really liked seeing.
While I would have liked to see the book expanded upon, I did really enjoy reading it and I’m sure I would read it again in the near future.