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Reviewed by Anne Boiling for Readers' Favorite
The zaftans had rubbery skin that oozed green slim. The creatures rarely wore clothes because the slime made the cloth catch fire. The females had three wombs (talk about PMS.) They were over 7' tall and weighed over 400 lbs. They had tentacles, holes to receive audio, eye stalks with black eyeballs and red irises, and they had beaks. Can you get any uglier?
Captain Yunta's ship hovered over a small unknown planet. They were on a mission to find rare mineral deposits such as monazite, bastnasite and gadolinite. A promotion was possible if the mission was successful. The zaftans had two methods of gathering the minerals from an inhabited planet: negotiate or military bullying.
On the planet's surface life went on as usual. MacDrakin Gemfinder, a dwarf, mined for emeralds. Leslie Higginbottom the local constable concerned herself with the town's security. Various others went about their daily chores. The zaftans managed to capture a few of the citizenry to attempt negotiations but have no intention of keeping their part of the agreement.
Zaftan Entrepreneurs by Hank Quense is Book 1 of the new series Zaftan Trilogy. Hank is a well known author of science fiction. I have reviewed several other books for him and I think this is by far his best. Zaftan Entrepreneurs is not your usual science fiction read. Hank has taken the genre to a new level. His text is very descriptive without over doing it. At times it felt like prose. Such as in his opening words, "The solar system flaunted unpretentiousness. It existed in a shabby neighborhood at the raggedy end of an unremarkable galaxy and had a common yellow dwarf at its core with five planets in orbit" and the description of the ship, "The ship could charitably be described as ugly, but that failed to account for the unsymmetrical and repulsive sight. The paint had peeled away in many areas showing bare metal in various stages of rust." What an amazing description.
Hank Quense adds more than a dab of humor to this book and a great deal of insight into the workings of the bureaucrats. I'm sure I have not done justice to this book. It is impossible to describe the antics going on from each side of situation. This is a must read book. You'll be glad you did.