Friday, August 24, 2007

Here There Be Dragons: Legend of the Firefish by George Bryan Polivka

[Note: This is the second week of classes and I've been playing catch-up at school, so I'm a bit late. Nevertheless, I think you will enjoy this installment of the Christian Science Fiction and Fantasy Blog tour]

If you look at ancient mariner maps, you will see uncharted waters with the legend "Here there be Dragons." What if that was true? What if monsters plied the unexplored recesses of the ocean. This is the premise of The Trophy Chase series and it's first book
Legend of the Firefish by George Bryan Polivka.

"What if there was a world similar to ours where those maps were accurate?" Polivka speculates. "In Nearing Vast, the legends turn out to be true, and the monsters, the Firefish, turn out to be incredibly valuable trophies. The first to hunt them is a pirate captain who sees the enormous fortune they can bring, and commissions a ship designed just for that purpose... the Trophy Chase. A young man stows away on that ship, hoping to bring redemption to his father's name, wealth to his fishing village, and honor to himself. That honor is required, he thinks, to win back the love of his lady."

According to Polivka, this swashbuckling tale revolves around a young man with "a sword in his hand and the heart of a priest."

"Packer Throme was mocked growing up because his father believed in Firefish, and set about trying to prove their existence. Packer's life took several bad turns... his father was lost at sea, and he was expelled from seminary. Humiliated and having no trade, he broke off his pending marriage. He then took up the sword, a skill at which he found he was amazingly gifted. But he is torn inside as he follows his new calling to hunt the beasts," Polivka explains.

However, his true love, Panna Seline, the daughter of the village priest, is not one to sit at home like Penelope weaving a tapestry. Awakening from a disturbing dream, she determines to following him, but says Polivka, "she discovers how much she doesn't know about the wide world, and the depth of depravity waiting out there for her."

Polivka describes the other characters rounding out the story:

"Scatter Wilkins is a pirate, who will do anything to find and kill more Firefish. When Packer brings news of Firefish feeding waters which he found in his father's diary, "Scat" is bound to sail into dangerous waters to find them.
"Talon is the security officer aboard the Trophy Chase. She is as brilliant with a sword as she is vicious. A native of Drammun, the sworn enemies of Nearing Vast, she hates Firefish and wants to return to piracy. She quickly comes to hate Packer and all he stands for, and is bound to prove him wrong on all counts... particularly this useless devotion to the "weak God" of the Vast... the one who was crucified."

Ironically, the Firefish also becomes a character in the story as well. Polivka explains, "The Firefish itself has thoughts and motives that we get to understand. I've had more than one reader say the Firefish is their favorite character."

While feeling the struggle of Packer, the tenaciousness of Penna, and the complexity of Talon Polivka, also admits affection for two sailors "Smith Delaney and Marcus Pile, who provide their endearing, none too sophisticated views on the whole matter. I really, really like both of them"

Polivka emphasizes that the book is first and foremost an entertaining adventure. "This is not a message book, with a sermon carefully crafted within it." Polivka points out.

That does not mean it is mindless entertainment, though. "It does explore some significant aspects of human spirituality that matter to me. Specifically, the whole area of turning the other cheek, and the apparent weakness of Jesus' command to "resist not evil." These are not suggestions on His part, but commands which he then showed us how to live out. And from that came great power. Most churches do not teach humility as the only route to power, and yet it seems obvious in scripture that it is the only path God has ordained: the path of humiliation. So that plays out in the books. If you want a hero who overpowers evil with the strength of a good sword and a noble purpose, this isn't the book for you. If you want to see how the meek inherit the earth, tune in."

This is the first book in a series. While I didn't have time this month to read the book, I do plan on buying it. It sounds like a fun ride.

If you want to read more about this book visit the following blogs:

Trish Anderson
Brandon Barr
Wayne Thomas Batson
Jim Black
Justin Boyer
Grace Bridges
Amy Browning
Jackie Castle
Valerie Comer
Karri Compton
Frank Creed
Lisa Cromwell
CSFF Blog Tour
Gene Curtis
D. G. D. Davidson
Merrie Destefano
Jeff Draper
April Erwin
Linda Gilmore
Beth Goddard
Marcus Goodyear
Russell Griffith
Jill Hart
Katie Hart
Sherrie Hibbs
Christopher Hopper
Jason Joyner
Dawn King
Tina Kulesa
Lost Genre Guild
Terri Main
Rachel Marks
Karen McSpadden
Rebecca LuElla Miller
Eve Nielsen
John W. Otte
John Ottinger
Robin Parrish
Lyn Perry
Deena Peterson
Cheryl Russel
Hanna Sandvig
Chawna Schroeder
Mirtika Schultz
James Somers
Steve Trower
Speculative Faith
Jason Waguespac
Daniel I. Weaver


Blogger Becky said...

Terri, sorry to hear you weren't feeling well. Hope you've recovered. Nothing worse than starting school and not feeling well.

My prayers.


August 27, 2007 at 1:17 PM  
Blogger methatiam said...

I'm hoping this entry means you're feeling better!
Sounds good I'll have to check this one out.

August 28, 2007 at 6:29 PM  

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home