The Siege of Praetor, by David Kristoph


The red giant Saria is dying. Praetar, a sand-blown planet, lies occupied. Its people are buried and beaten, forced to toil for the Melisao Empire that prepares to flee their star. Hyken, a Sentinel pilot, is faced with a moral dilemma that forces him to choose between his co-pilot and their mission. Mira, a factory worker on Praetar, struggles to make a better life for her daughters–using what little resources at her command. A slumlord named Bruno makes his own arrangements, gathering what meager power he can in the Empire’s scramble to flee. Caught up in the exodus, these people struggle to survive. Are they strangers, or do their decisions affect one-another in unexpected ways?

One of the best things about Science Fiction is the ability to tackle real-world social and political issues without riling up the various ideological camps on said issue. We live in a world with corruption, greed and some of the worst behavior humans are capable of.

These issues and one of morality are addressed in this book, and that’s wonderful. Any story that can get a response from me is a worthy story to read. After all, that’s what books are for: challenging the reader’s world view by taking it out of this world.

As I sit down to write this review, I’m forced to wonder, ‘how did it end?’ Then I remember: it didn’t. Cliffhangers are a cheap plot device, and I expect writers of Sci-fi to realize this. Siege of Praetor is full of rich and powerful writing that pulls the reader along in wonder and expectation. I just wish the ending of this story were better written. Unresolved cliffhangers are poor substitutions for good storytelling. You can wrap up most of the story and pull the rug out from under the reader, and I’ll give you props, but to just end the story and figure I’ll just buy the next one is offensive.

I know I’ve read this story for free on NetGalley, but it still irks me that the ending is simply unfinished. The writing and ideas in this story will still demand I get the next book, but the cloud of betrayal looms and a star has to die for that reason.

All three books are available through Kindle Unlimited, and although I’ve only read the first book, I have the second and anticipate I’ll like them all, so you KU users should get them all.

David Kristoph

David Kristoph lives with his wonderful wife and two not-quite German Shepherds. He’s a fantastic reader, great videogamer, good chess player, average cyclist, and mediocre runner. He writes mostly Science Fiction and Fantasy. Check out his work if you want to help pay for his beer.


About Mark Gardner

Mark Gardner lives in northern Arizona with his wife, three children and a pair of spoiled dogs. Mark holds a degrees in Computer Systems and Applications and Applied Human Behavior. View all posts by Mark Gardner

2 responses to “The Siege of Praetor, by David Kristoph

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: