By Nathan Long
Night Shade Books, $14.99, 320 pages
Jane Carver is an ex-Airborne Ranger biker chick on the run from the law. While evading search dogs and police helicopters, Jane finds refuge in a cave where she comes upon a “glowing silver clock thing.” Touching it transports her to the planet of Waar, just in the nick of time. Although being safe Jane finds herself in a foreign land filled with four-armed tiger-men (aka Cen-tigers), gladiators, slaves and sky pirates. So begins Nathan Long’s Jane Carver of Waar. The plot may seem familiar to many readers. There are definite similarities to an Edgar Rice Burroughs novel and John Carter’s first appearance on Mars, but Long tells the story from a female perspective, adds his own unique flare and deserves credit for his contribution to the genre. The book is marketed as a “loving tribute and scathing parody of the swashbuckling space fantasies of yore.” Its pace is fast and furious and holds the reader’s attention. Long’s characters, including villains, are well-developed and likable. Jane is an underdog who, in the process of surviving life on Waar, discovers more about her own identity along the way.
Reviewed by Kathryn Franklin