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***This is a gifted collaboration but all thoughts are my own***
I’ve reviewed two works from Anton Eine before this one, The Cleansing and Post-Molecular Comfort Food, and I must admit that I’m a fan of his quirky and unusual short stories. Plus Ten is another great story from him, this time focusing on the concept of “super soldiers”.
Have you ever played role-playing games where you need to powerlevel your character by adding certain points to strength, dexterity or intellect? Imagine someone doing it with real live soldiers.
Group of scientists working for army is testing unique technology to terrifically boost the abilities of ordinary soldiers turning them into ultimate weapon. How far will they dare to go in their experiment? And what is the ideal modification balance of skills for perfect warriors?
Action sci-fi short story “Plus Ten” takes you to the edge and beyond to answer those questions.
(Taken from Anton Eine’s website)
Plus Ten is like Eine’s other stories in that it’s pretty short, making it a good read over a cup of coffee. It’s a good length for what it’s trying to convey, and a lovely light read if you’re not feeling like getting your teeth into a full-sized novel.
I’m a big gamer so I liked one of the focuses of Plus Ten, which was the concept of “levelling up” soldiers using a system seen in a wide variety of games, where one adds points to certain skills. In this story it’s Strength, Speed, and Intellect, and each of these can have multiple points added to them until a combined total of 10 is reached for each soldier. We see a variety of different combinations played out in false battlefields, some with surprising results.
Although I wouldn’t say the ending was unpredictable I enjoyed the message of it, and felt that Eine was definitely hinting to some more worldly themes with his inclusion. As always there’s quite a knowing and perhaps dystopian take on society which is something I really like within the Eine’s writing. There’s also a good dose of humour which fans of authors such as Ben Elton might appreciate, with a lot of it targeted towards the Army and the stereotypes that we often associate with them.
Eine writes really well in first-person, this time from the point of view of a scientist working on these soldiers, and it’s interesting to see the thought processes that go on within his head. Our main character is probably a relatable one for many through his general perspectives, which makes such an unfamiliar concept and setting easy to get into.
Plus Ten isn’t my absolute favourite of Anton Eine’s as I preferred the writing styles of the other two that I reviewed, but then it’s got a lot of competition with his other short stories! I really enjoyed the plot and general concept of this one though, and with its themes of war, gaming, conceptual experimentation, and sci-fi, it will appeal to a wide audience. If any of those are interests of yours then this is a great short read!
If you’d like to purchase Plus Ten by Anton Eine then you can do so here:
Anton Eine is sci-fi and technofantasy author from Kyiv, Ukraine.
After building his successful career in marketing, he decided to let his creativity writing fantastic fiction books to actualize numerous ideas he had in his mind for years.
Anton is passionate about food (and some drinks of course!), photography, animals (especially wild cats) and rock music. He likes embedding his hobbies into the fantastic canvas of his writings and to share that passion with readers.
Anton Eine officially can’t stand any limits and boundaries, so his books usually step out of the box of traditional genres, crossing the edges of conventional storytelling and blurring the borders of common thinking.
Author of superhero series “Maze City” and technomancy series “Programagic”, also known for short sci-fi stories “The Cleansing”, “Sincerely Yours, Lucifer”, “Plus Ten”, “Post-molecular Comfort Food” and others.
(Taken from Anton Eine’s website)
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