The beginning of the school year was even busier than I planned for and it’s taken a bit longer to get back here than I anticipated.
As I said in my previous post, I typically like to read extended series in the order they were written, not the order things occur chronologically in the series. Very rarely does an author have an entire story arc fully fleshed out in advance. While they might know bits of the backstory, they inevitably don’t know it in as much detail as they do after writing that portion of the story. Over time their writing experience changes, and often the voice changes.
I read and enjoyed Alan Dean Foster’s stories of Flinx and Pip when I was a teen/college student. This was the mid-80’s and there were a half dozen books or so. They’ve recently been re-released (and apparently several more books have been written). My younger son, the voracious SF-Fantasy reader, picked up a few from the library, so I decided to give it a re-read.
From reading the front covers of the books my son brought home, it appeared that For Love of Mother-Not was the first book in the series. And it is, it is the origin story of how Flinx met Pip. The book is plot driven, adventures and peril abound, but I found the book lacking something and the digressions to other points of view disruptive. And then I went to Mr. Foster’s website and discovered that For Love of Mother-Not was actual a prequel, written in the mid-80’s and not actually the first Flinx story. I don’t know if that explains my sense of missing something, but when next I return to this universe, I will go back to The Tar-Aiym Krang, which is the first book in the Commonwealth Universe.