Thursday 30 January 2020

Book Review: Blurred Vision by Steve Harrison

Blurred Vision
Steve Harrison

Publisher: Elsewhen Press
Publication date: 18th November 2019
Genre: Middle Grade Science Fiction
Pages: 236
Format read: Paperback
Source: Courtesy of the author

When Polly Hart agrees to swap places with a girl from another planet, she has no idea that this makes her a fugitive in the fabulous universe revealed by her new friend, and now she must outwit the school bully, a weird teacher and an interstellar hit squad to survive. So annoying!

First contact?
“Take it easy,” said Kylie, still with a hint of amusement. “You’re perfectly safe. Think of me as a tourist.”
Polly squinted back at her. She couldn’t help herself. “Are you invading earth?”
“Are you kidding? Do you know how much that would cost?”
“Then what are you doing here?”
“We found you after you activated the camera on the satellite and were impressed by the other stuff you did to hide your tracks. Easy for us, but we all thought it was very cool. For an Earth human, anyway.”
“You don’t talk like an alien.”
“How many do you know?” asked Kylie. Polly couldn’t argue with that. “Good point.”

Harrison has written a humorous story with aliens both good and bad. We are conveyed to a world of space travel where a girl is the heroine of the story, surviving dire circumstances and doing it with a sense of adventure.

Through Polly he gives his readers a protagonist who is smart and adventurous. She can hack top NASA files and doesn’t baulk at danger if it includes an adventure.

When a portal opens outside Polly’s house she comes face to face with teen alien Kylie. They agree to swap places so Kylie can experience life in an Earth school. Polly is taken to Kylie’s spaceship.

The overseers of Earth, the Hywardathians, find out Kylie is on Earth. She has crossed a line and must be stopped. They are out to capture here at all cost which also puts Polly in danger. Polly must now try to save Kylie and switch back before it’s too late for them both.

I loved the concept of this “freaky Friday” style story and I enjoyed Kylie’s shenanigans at Polly’s school. However I kept getting pulled away from the story with large amounts of world building, or in this case universe building, through extracts from Vryl’s Galmanac a sort of Wikipedia of space.
I really wanted more of Kylie’s interactions with Penny’s school friends and to see more of Kylie’s world other than the spaceship they were stuck on.

Written in an easy style with a sense of fun and adventure Blurred Vision is well suited to the older end of Middle Grade 11 – 13 years.
Contains mild swearing.


My rating     3/5

I absolutely enjoyed Steve Harrison's first adult novel Time Storm.

Steve Harrison was born in Yorkshire, England, grew up in Lancashire, migrated to New Zealand and eventually settled in Sydney, Australia, where he lives with his wife.

As he juggled careers in shipping, insurance, online gardening and the postal service, Steve wrote short stories, sports articles and a long running newspaper humour column called HARRISCOPE: a mix of ancient wisdom and modern nonsense. In recent years he has written a number of unproduced feature screenplays, although being unproduced was not the intention, and developed projects with producers in the US and UK. His script, Sox, was nominated for an Australian Writers’ Guild ‘Awgie’ Award and he has written and produced three short films under his Pronunciation Fillums partnership.

His novel TimeStorm was Highly Commended in the Fellowship of Australian Writers (FAW) National Literary Awards for 2013, Jim Hamilton Award in the fantasy/science fiction category, for an unpublished novel of sustained quality and distinction by an Australian author.

This review is part of the  Booklover Book Review Aussie author challenge  



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