Tuesday, March 5, 2019
Book Review: 'The Dar Lumbre Chronicles' by Don Johnston
‘To give light’
Texas author Don Johnston served in the US Air Force as a jungle survivor in Panama, then earning his degree in biology and chemistry from Stephen F. Austin State University, and has retired from his career as a chemist and entrepreneur to settle into writing – science fiction is his preferred genre. THE DAR LUMBRE CHRONICLES is his publishing debut.
Don combines his background both from the military experience and his scientific curiosity as a chemist and biological investigator molds a very tight sci-fi/genetic engineering tale into a captivating novel. He seizes or attention with the opening lines: ‘Oct.21, 2086 – A black sedan coasted to a stop in front of the Anaheim Lofts on La Palma Avenue. Four burly NatGov Special Agents dressed in black uniforms jumped out and charged through the front door of the building. By passing the elevator, they bolted upstairs to the second floor and stopped in front of nit 6. The lead agent, Lieutenant Garza, rang the doorbell, waited five seconds, and rang it again. There was no answer. After ringing the bell for third time, Garza pulled a thumb-sized megaphone form his utility belt and spoke into t, “Attention, Dar Lumbre. Special Agents have your unit surrounded. Please open the door immediately.” Still, no answer…’
That level of intensity is maintained through the book as we learn about Mexican geneticist Dar Lumbre whose experiments with DL-666 (a culture of synthetic heart tissue) cause a brutal response from the government and the influence of his strange disappearance result in a near cult following. A bizarre solar flare complicates facts and destroys scientific data and CellTech geneticists Crane Hopkins and Annie Lee commit to bringing Dar Lumbre’s DL-666 back into the intended course of providing material for heart transplants. Suspense and genetics and sci-fi incidents mix with romance and some prophecy for a better society to make this an involving novel – an impressive first novel for Don Johnston.
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