Burn – Aleksandr Voinov
Flight Lieutenant Chris Waters is the pilot of a cutting-edge unmanned SAD fighter drone that is used for secret government missions. Chris is cutting-edge technology himself: his neural network is upgraded with cyber-technology and software that makes him the interface of his combat drone.
Then, something goes wrong as he connects to his drone. Haunted by strange, disorientating impressions, a so-called “ghost”, he hooks up on leave with fellow pilot Cyril for a night. But Cyril is not the man Chris thought he is, and Chris soon finds out what the “ghost” in his body really is, as well as the truth about his missions.
I am aware Aleksandr Voinov writes sci-fi but I almost didn’t recognize the story as his. Granted this is my first Voinov sci fi, I think perhaps the fact that the characters and the setting were American threw me off. I’m used to his European characters. This thing felt different. It wasn’t a dud, not the best either. It also felt like a prequel to something.
This sure packs a lot for a shortie.
It started out with Chris talking to a recorder and preening for the press which covers the world-building part. I thought it would continue in that vein, then, poof! It shifted to third person. We get burn junkies, a mystery, a one-night stand, military secrets, and a pilot gone rogue. What the titular burn is, I’m not exactly sure but Chris is addicted to it. I wouldn’t say the ending was satisfying or complete. More like, it hinted on so much more that the short story format would leave you wanting. Make this a full length novel, please.
Reviews of Aleksandr Voinov’s books here.
3 Stars – not exactly setting my world on fire but I liked it