Author: Owen Quinn
They have been here for decades, the survivors of a dead world, Xereba. Brought to Earth by a vision of a terrifying future they live among us waiting for the darkness to fall because Earth will be the last battlefield between good and evil. They could be your teacher, the bully, the lollipop lady or the homeless man in the street but they protect us. Something is coming and they are all that stands between normality and chaos.
They are the Time Warriors.
The Time Warriors is the new scifi epic series from Ireland. Join Varran, a man that has not aged in over 100 years, Tyran, technical genius at 19, Michael, an orphan whose world is turned upside down and Jacke, a no nonsense black Belfast girl in a series of exciting new adventures.
Together they protect the Earth against evil in all its forms. Over 4 volumes they will embark on a journey of wonder and terror as they face creatures and villains beyond their imagining across space and time, each story building on the other until the terrifying climax in book 4 Tempest when everything comes together.
In this volume they will meet the original masters of Earth, see the desperate voyage from the dead world of Xereba, Tyran will face an impossible task on an alien world that exists between dimensions while a mysterious creature is terrorising the inhabitants of an island off the coast of Ireland but a new and deadly menace awaits them when creatures from another world threaten the fabric of time itself and a meeting they will never forget.
But all the while, someone is watching, waiting for the chance to strike against Varran as a plan for vengeance is hatched, a plan that began the day Xereba died.
Remember, everything happens for a reason.
The Voalox Horror:
The adventures continue in book 2 of the Time Warriors. In this volume the Warriors learn they have an unseen enemy. Jacke’s past may be the key to saving an alien colony, Michael finds himself trapped in the 24th century aboard, a ghost hunt turns deadly, and they face an old enemy as well as facing off against the ghost of Jack the Ripper. But is everything as it seems? Remember everything happens for a reason.
As Science Fiction has gotten darker and more sophisticated, these books feel like a nostalgic love letter to the older shows that used to grace our screens. There are elements of many of these types of shows with Star Trek: The Next Generation, Stargate SG1 and Dr Who being the most prevalent. The main reason I’m using this similarity is that the books themselves even follow similar structures to these shows as they are a collection of short stories rather than a fully fleshed out novel.
There’s nothing wrong with this in theory (and fans of the above and other similar shows will find much to enjoy here) but it unfortunately means these books contain a lot of the elements that ultimately put me off these shows. It’s not that I’d ever think these shows were bad, I just struggle to go back to them after what has come since.
One such problem is that there are far too many Sci-Fi “Get out of jail free cards” used in these stories. They can time travel using tachyons with no further explanation or reason. The heroes are descendants of an Alien race but all appear human so there is never any drama in that. They can understand pretty much any language they hear with little to no difficulty meaning they rarely encounter problems when talking to new species. Plus as descendants of this race, they also have an inbuilt genetic memory that will reveal all of their history upon their 18th Birthday so they don’t need to learn too much about their heritage before they accept the lives laid out for them.
Like the episodes in a season of a TV show, the stories are a mixed bag. There are some which I enjoyed, such as a tentacled monster attack in a small rural village and one involving a race who must decide between being imprisoned forever or being wiped out completely. There are others that aren’t as good, such as a Ghost/Alien story and a trip back to Victorian London. Then there are some that just don’t make any sense, like a penal colony where both the criminals and their victims are imprisoned together.
Also like these shows, each story must contain at least one moral message that will in some way link to the main character of that story. The “Heart” of these old shows is no bad thing as it’s one of the reasons they have endured as long as they have but, like many of the shows, the moral of the story is sometimes too heavy handed.
The Alien Races and characters they meet along the way are quite good and varied enough that whilst they resemble other characters and races you’ve seen/read about before, they have enough personality and depth to flesh them out and become their own characters (even if there a few too many seemingly omnipotent Races out there who step in to sort everything out).
One of the best aspects to the books is some of the villains. Whilst they are hinted at in the first book, the second book takes more time to show the Time Warriors unknown Nemesis (and heavily hints that they play major roles in the upcoming books ), which is a nice bridge between the stories that the first book lacked. Then there is The Collector, a recurring villain with morally ambiguous intentions who pops up from time to time to cause trouble and let the Warriors know he’s on their trail. His motivations aren’t clear and he does put the trio in their place more than once, which I liked. Unfortunately these two do have a slightly annoying “Bond Villain” strategy of letting the Warriors escape even when they’ve clearly won.
The main problem with the book is The Time Warriors themselves. The prologue is the slightly overblown (and kind of nonsensical) destruction of Varran’s home planet. It follows him and his journey to Earth. The Time Warriors aren’t introduced until the last page and then they start their adventures with no fanfare. To use the TV show analogy again, you can’t help but feel you missed out on the pilot. A story introducing the 3 (perhaps when Tyran was turning 18 and getting her genetic memory restored) would really have set things on the right track as it would mean you’re more invested when they go on their first mission.
The characterisation is also another issue I have with the series. We only really learn vital clues as to what makes these guys tick as the stories dictate (an example of this is Jacke’s childhood abuse only coming to light in a similarly themed story). Tyran and Jacke have been the main focus of this and their characters have been fleshed out well as I got through the two books. However, this comes with it’s own problems as I’m two books in and I only know that Michael is slightly pudgy and has self esteem issues (well, except that he gets royally gut punched in the one story that focuses solely on him).
I’d say these books will appeal to people who can still enjoy “older” Sci-Fi (and with Dr Who going into it’s new season possibly more popular than it’s ever been, I’d say this is still a pretty big audience) and I would recommend they give it a go. However I do think that it might have problems finding it’s feet with a newer generation of fans who have become accustomed to the better written and grittier Sci-fi we’ve seen over the last few years.