A Coming of Age - Timothy Zahn As I have mentioned previously, Timothy Zahn is my absolute favorite author. I first read his works with Heir to the Empire and have continued to enjoy his non-Star Wars books. As a mini-goal, I have decided to read all of his works. This was another of his older works that I picked up in a used bookstore.

Plot:
The planet Tigris is strange not necessarily for its flora, fauna, or alien life. Something about the planet has bestowed a "gift" upon anyone between the ages of 5 and puberty--telekinesis. This "gift", however, quickly turned into a curse during the Lost Generation, in which much technology was lost. Since then, society has changed to reign in the children who have this ability to "teek" anything they see or touch.
Lisa Duncan is a preteen (actually 14, but she hasn't yet reached puberty) who is not looking forward to losing her gifts in Transition. So, she decides to get ahead on some schooling and learn how to read. However, this proves to be a serious error and leads her into much trouble.
Meanwhile, a scientist, Dr. Matthew Jarvis, kidnaps a 5-year old orphan boy and starts some break-through experiments on him that could uproot the entire Tigrin society. Stanley Tirrell and his righthand, Tonio, a preteen, rush out to find the lost boy and to keep Dr. Jarvis' discovery from falling into the wrong hands.

Good:
Wow! I was not exactly looking forward to reading this book just because the concept didn't sound that interesting. But as I started reading, the story drew me further and further in. I felt Lisa's pain at seeing her childhood come to a close. I understood her actions to try to "get ahead" of the crowd. I also cheered on Tirrell and Tonio as they slowly picked their way through the rubble of the mystery.
Besides pretty interesting characters (namely Lisa Duncan and Tirrell in a smaller sense), the story is awesome. Timothy Zahn creates this world without spending pages upon pages of boring history lessons. He retells it only as necessary and convinces me as the reader that the characters know their history and don't feel like they have to regurgitate it for the audience to understand what is going on.
There is enough action towards the end to grip the audience. You are never quite sure who will win in the end.

Bad:
Very minimal. The language was quite intense, which was quite unlike Zahn. Also, the villain, Omega, was rather dry, certainly nothing like his villain, Thrawn.

Dialogue/Sexual Situations/Violence:
A lot of da**, he**, and sh**. Mention is made of a sexual relationship between two teens and the kidnapped child is illegitimate. The Lost Generation wrought havoc on society 200 years previously. Omega is not afraid to use children and their teekay power to harm others.

Overall:
Impressive! Most impressive! For a book that I thought would be dull, this kept me very entertained. Give it to Timothy Zahn to pull off another good book!