Category Archives: star wars

Readers love Sean Yeager Adventures books

Sean Yeager books are written to inspire and excite readers. I often hear feedback from parents and I ask what their child likes and ‘why?’ Here are some highlights.

If you are considering buying a present for a child in your life (8 to 15) take a look at a free sample of the first chapters: DNA Thief and Hunters Hunted .

Verbal feedback about DNA Thief:

Mike:  My son raved about the DNA Thief, he said it was the best book he’s read. He loved the action and insisted on writing his own Amazon review. He’s quite selective about what he reads and he took his time reading it because he didn’t want to miss anything. I was taken aback, we’ll buy the second book as a special present.

Alison: Our son was up until late reading DNA Thief and he wouldn’t put it down. He finished the book within two days. He says it’s his second favourite to Percy Jackson. He loves all the gear and gizmos. He asked if there can be more machines and gear in the next book? He wants to know what happens next.

Anne: My son read both books from cover to cover in a few days. He’s now read it twice and raves about the characters. He’s been designing pictures of craft and bases inspired by  the book. He can’t wait to read the third book. He’s asked if there can be more jokes and lots of incidents. He loves the characters and wants to know more about what happens next.

Here are some Amazon.co.uk reviews in the words of the reviewers:

It is sci-fi and an action thriller rolled into one, and centres on Sean Yeager, who believes he is fairly ordinary until a burglary at his home reveals he is anything but. The boy is spirited away by a protector he didn’t know he had – The Foundation. From there the plot unravels at terrific speed, and reveals secrets about Sean’s Dad and his own status.
My only comment would be that the title and cover graphics might not be as enticing to kids as they should be – this book deserves to be read! The other character names, such as Major Clavity and Greerbo – are certainly spot on.
Both tongue-in-cheek and seat-of-your-trousers thrilling, it is cleverly written ‘take’ on the ‘Boy Fights World’ philosophy of more well known titles and, in my view, stands up just as well. Love2readuk

There was so much action in this fast-paced thrill ride that I kept seeing it as a movie in my head. Never sure where the story was going, I decided to sit back and enjoy the ride. What would have helped was to have put on some popcorn first! Although I understand that this is the first in the series I wanted to know more about Sean and indeed his mom who is quite the character and I laughed every time she shows up. I hope we see more of her in the series. What I also really liked was the fact that the bad guys really are bad guys and not some laughable buffoons like we tend to see in so many other kid stories. DragonOne

Sean Yeager and the DNA Thief is a fast-moving action-packed novel containing lots of exciting, humorous and thrilling scenes. This book is a must-read and a worthy competitor for James Bond. The story is about an organisation that has set out to protect a boy named Sean Yeager, who has special powers. Although he is only a boy, a lot of trouble was spent to kidnap and protect him and it’s fun finding out why. This book has really excited me and I can’t wait until the next book comes out!:-) LavaMitts

And a review from Goodreads USA:

I will put this book into my reading cupboard for my high school students as they will enjoy it. This story had action and an interesting storyline and I want to know what is going to happen to Sean and why he is so important to the Founder. How do I get this next book?  A, Goodreads

 

Wishing you a great holiday season and a Happy New Year!

I’ll be busy preparing for the celebrations, while finding time to develop book 3 Claws of Time which is now plotted and in progress. There are so many ideas I’m struggling to fit them all in!

Happy reading

D.M. Jarrett

www.seanyeager.com

 

 

 

Sean Yeager Adventures website

Buy Sean Yeager Adventures books

What next after Harry Potter? 5 Great middle grade to tween book series

Well it had to happen, our son has read all the Harry Potter books and we’ve been searching for other great book series. In no particular order here are 5 great book series for middle grade to tween readers. (I have omitted Young Adult titles deliberately).

1. Harry Potter Click here

Obvious really. If the first three books don’t grab your child’s attention I guess they don’t like Harry Potter. Stand by also for the comparisons and proclamations of the things not in the films which are better presented in the books. Strangely the shorter books were voted the best by our son, perhaps they were better edited?

2. Percy Jackson Click here

Now you do need to allow your child to settle with the idea that Greek and Roman myths have been ‘borrowed’ and transplanted to the US. (Not my idea of plausible I have to say). Apparently the books are an easy and exciting read with lots of action. I would add that they seem to be easily read in next to no time. Good news for the author and publisher, not such great news for the parents asked to buy the next book in a matter of hours.

3. The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings Click here

Perhaps a push for middle grade and pretty heavy in volume. We started with The Hobbit and it was very well received. A budding fan is born. I await the film and book comparisons. LOL. Given the length of both that could be some years away.

4. Sean Yeager Adventures Click here

Fast paced, exciting and full of ideas. Our son and several of his friends have been up all hours reading and re-reading books one and two. Be prepared for an explosion of ideas, designs and follow on stories.

5. Bear Grylls Mission: Survival  Click here

Apparently these books are non-stop boys own adventures with all the details added in. Useful if you are ever stuck in a jungle and need survival skills. If only there was an episode for commuters and office workers.

6. Artemis Fowl Click here

Technically this is the sixth book series, though I did say ‘after Harry Potter’. We have had a mixed reception with this series. Son loves the action and humour, he’s not so keen on the faeries. Nonetheless a worthy addition to our humble book series list. Lots happens and there are plenty of books in the series.

So there you have it parents, grand parents, aunts, bloggers. We hope you find this list of book series useful when seeking purchases for the children in your life.

Happy reading.

D.M. Jarrett

 

Son inspires Father to write children’s book series

It all began on a foggy Saturday morning one autumn. I was driving my son to a football match along a winding country road. The fog was so thick we could hardly see the next bend, let alone the trees standing silently on either verge. Fortunately, the traffic was light and there were no wild deer wandering around. It seemed so surreal and closed-in that it made me feel like we were completely alone in the world. Two explorers on an empty trail.

‘Wouldn’t it be funny if we were kidnapped by aliens?’ I joked.

My son laughed and asked me what kind of spaceship they had. I invented a story as we drove along. It was a bit corny and very Close Encounters, but my son loved it. A huge ship with bright lights levitated our whole car into the sky, swallowed us whole and sped away into space.

‘And then what happened?’ asked my son.

We arrived a little late for the football match and I think the result was a hard-fought draw. On the way home my son again asked about the aliens. Over the next few days he asked for more  details, which I dutifully made up on the spot. And he drew pictures of the aliens, their home world and their ship. The mushroom headed aliens from the orange planet had been discovered!  As a surprise, I wrote a short story about an elaborated version of the adventure and printed it out, My son was only 5 years old and it seemed like a great way to encourage his reading. Sure enough, he read the twenty page story several times over and asked for more. He continued to request more information about the aliens and wandered around the living home inventing elaborate details. He invented their home world, their food, how they communicated and where they lived. A creative professor was appointed.

We still talk about that first story to this day. I have the printout tucked away in a folder somewhere. Over the following months I wrote several other short stories. A fairytale, a mystery and a spy story. Each was studied and my son acted as editor and critic. He was honest and articulate. We also shared the stories with one of his closest friends. Two of the stories stood out for them. The aliens and spies. They enthused about them and developed intricate details of the gear they used and how they outdid their enemies. It dawned on me that these two boys enjoyed nothing better than reading about gizmos, gear, ships and of course adventures.

Fast forwards several years, I am in the process of plotting Sean Yeager books 3, 4 and 5. My son, now 10, introduces inspired ideas. Sometimes accidentally, often with great precision and deep thought. He is the self-appointed ‘chief designer’. If a craft or building is referred to in a scene he designs it. Factions, tactics and missions are declared regularly with requests to talk about the ‘Golden Era’ or the ‘Foundation Commandos’. A timeline was invented pitching the  first two books firmly in the middle of an epic saga. So far so Star Wars and yet not at all.

We are both fans of James Bond, Star Wars and numerous films and characters. Monty Python and Johnny English for example. With a twist. Many are the times we debate where all the Stormtroopers have suddenly arrived from and why they can’t hit a barn door at five paces? Austin Powers is another favourite for making fun of the baddies and their huge private armies. We are convinced that every base must be wired with self destruct devices from day one.

Without giving away plot spoilers, it is true to say that my son has now inspired at least three major plot points in book 3 and most of the outline plot for book 4. Book 1 was drawn in part from two early short stories, while book 2 was I have to say mostly my own creation to surprise and stretch the genre. I have long since decided to stretch the SY world as far and deep as I can. With some humour and plot twists thrown in for good measure. The back story is about spies and two factions attempting to defeat each other and leave Earth. Hence the tagline James Bond meets Star Wars. Of course Sean Yeager Adventures are also original with a flavour of their own.

In the Sean Yeager world nothing is what it seems. For a start it is superficially just like the town you live in. Things break and go wrong. There are no massive armies or heroes who survive certain death for implausible reasons. You see, none of these plot angles would survive my number one muse and critic. And I find that the confines of constraint are far richer veins to explore than heroes and enemies with infinite resources. Perhaps those are variations on the ‘unstoppable force and immovable object paradox’? Or the similar ‘slap shot syndrome’.

Looking ahead, I am pleased to have entertained my son and his friends. Long may it continue. They have pretty much demanded book 3 with helpful hints such as: ‘more gear and vehicles please’.  They have role played the heroes and villains and taken them far further than the existing plot lines. Lego ships and paper drawings abound. We once made Kimbleton Hall in plan view out of basic Lego bricks. It was great fun. Book 3 is overdue and the plot is already well-defined. All that remains is the many hours of writing, refining and editing. LOL.

It seems that inspiration is circular, from author to readers and around again. From father to son and now son to father. One day who knows we may be watching a Sean Yeager film together and debating the finer points scene by scene. Now that would be fun.

D. M. Jarrett

Sean Yeager Adventures website

Buy Sean Yeager Adventures

Amazon reviews:www.seanyeager.com

Fast-moving, action-packed and humorous

Make this into a movie now!

Buckle your seat belts!

This story reads like an action ride and I enjoyed the ride

 

It’s not a matter of life or death, it’s more serious than that……… the riddle of unloved sci-fi

Sean Yeager and the DNA Thief Cover, available now at Amazon, Kobo

Following a late night debate over a beer or two, I recently researched the best selling films of all time

I like all kinds of fiction and non-fiction in films, TV and books. I like comedy, horror, adventures dramas and such like. I only draw the line at ‘crud’ and the majority of chick flicks. So that also rules out anything Twilight related. (Yes I can’t stand them – for me the Underworld series is a far better story)

I began writing Sean Yeager Adventures because it felt right and because it arose from my interests as a youngster. We used to have no end of sci-fi on TV: UFO, Dr Who, Star Trek, Blake’s 7. And at the lighter end we had Danger Mouse, Thunderbirds, Captain Scarlet and many more. I guess some of it rubbed off and then Star Wars happened…

So back to the film stats. It turns out that nearly 1/3 of the top selling films of all time are sci-fi and they account for just under 1/3 of the gross income for the top 50 (that’s about 28% or $13.2 Bn).

The big winners are of course well known:

  • Avatar
  • Star Wars
  • Transformers
  • Inception
  • ET
  • Jurassic Park
  • The Matrix

To which we can add other big films like the Terminator, Alien and Star Trek series who fall outside the top 50.

And my point is?

Simply this – how come there are so few top selling books that are sci-fi?

I don’t believe for a second that sci-fi lovers don’t buy or read books.

Happy reading

D.M. Jarrett

www.seanyeager.com

It’s life Jim but not as we know it …….. villains never give in

Just like my evil nemesis Egbert Von Krankhausen I never give up in waving a virtual flag at those readers who are seriously missing out on a good thing. I mean come on everyone over here! Aren’t you bored of vampires yet? Sean Yeager awaits! The true spiritual successor to Parry Hotter and Dartemis Owl.

In a move that is bound to spread tremors and tsunamis across the world I am transporting Sean Yeager to a whole new dimension for the holiday period. A dimension of lending. That’s right the Kindle lending scheme. Now you have no excuses – read and enjoy!  Or I’ll send Krankhausen after you…..

Is it life Jim or is it opting for the inevitable? I’ll beam up again soon with news from the front. One thing is clear there will be no cosy little romance picnic to spoil the action. Yes that is a direct dig at Star Wars who made me cringe for what seemed like eternity with that dire excuse for a love story between ‘To be Darth’ and ‘Oh look I’m pregnant with twins and the best sci-fi gizmos and forces ever can’t save me’.

With Hunters Hunted steaming up the mirrors and generally leaping off the page to climb new mountains, The DNA Thief will soon be joined by another. Yes folks its going to be Empire Strikes Back time. Aliens with a plural instead of the singular dark, shifty stomach ache and pregnancy metaphor. (Ouch!) It’s building up nicely into a spaghetti car crash of gargantuan proportions. Try saying that quickly!  (“That, that, that…..”)

So in the run up to Happy Holidays of all colours and creeds consider this: Sean Yeager is out there somewhere hiding from his enemies and hoping that Santa isn’t laser blasted to a crisp by his trigger happy protectors. (Could be worse, have you met Krankhausen? Now he has some serious personal issues man!)

Happy reading

D.M. Jarrett

Farewell Star Wars,………. the end of an era

So Disney is paying hard cash and shares to acquire George Lucas’ empire Lucasfilm?

Wow! That’s a big decision.

Apparently the deal is worth £4bn for two film franchises (Star Wars and Indiana Jones) and technical experts (Industrial Light and Magic and Skywalker Sound) plus related rights and merchandising.

Double wow!

So why would Disney pay such a  huge amount for an already mature and seemingly complete set of films? I mean it’s not just George Lucas who is effectively retiring, what about Harrison Ford? Does he still need to work?

Sure, the Lucas empire will continue to generate wealth and new spin-offs; no doubt the accountants have done their sums and possibly see it as an annuity cash cow. But even so….. $4bn?

Next we hear there will be more Star Wars films. Oh really, about what? It will be fascinating to see how they try and make the audience care about another tranche of characters. It’s not as if the prequel trilogy stands up to much scrutiny compared to the original first three films (episodes IV to VI).

There also seems to be some bitterness in the air, or at least it is highlighted in some press reports. I struggle to see how George Lucas can be that ‘upset’ about criticisms of selling out or sullying the brand. Surely he is a film maker and business man extraordinaire and somewhat above what some oik thinks? (myself included) I mean, with that kind of ability and success you could choose almost anything you like as your next project couldn’t you? Plus he has milked it for billions – fact. So it’s a bit obvious to say it’s sold out. Yes that’s the whole point of selling stuff so widely and so voraciously surely? We are not talking some minor cult series are we? It is not Sean Yeager Adventures now is it?

For what it’s worth I don’t dislike the prequels, I simply find them contrived, overdone and not entirely convincing compared to the classic episodes. And it’s not because of the years that have passed – I’ve re-watched every episode. It’s more that I believe the original characters in IV were better, their struggles were more believable and I felt like I cared more about them. Yes of course the series is for kids and you do have to make allowances, however adults did enjoy IV and V. There are good scenes in each of I to III but the love interest was dreadfully badly written; the politics were dull and unconvincing and the action sequences were often completely over the top.

So what of the future? Well I hope they go back to brass tacks and find a story or two from the extensive canon (fan, prequel, expanded universe, pro-books, Lucas stories) to make the viewers want to care again. It would also be good if they addressed some of the short-comings of Star Wars as a ‘universe’. Short-comings? I hear you gasp well yes – here are a few and I’m barely even trying…..

Baddies can shoot straight; planets could be glassed; even clones need food and toilet breaks; anyone with a brain cell can see through a simple disguise especially a ‘Jedi knight’ surely?; superior numbers mean you will win battles; even in WW1 there were bombers and missiles; space does not amplify sound; people do not understand alien speak instantly without any form of interpreter; being good at the last second having slaughtered hundreds of kids does not make you instantly popular in heaven; a plama laser sword against hundreds of blasters – do me a favour, you’d die – see last of the Samurai; and no you can not fly or jump through millions of obstacles and survive without a scratch. And last but not least – the clones – when did they become useless as storm troopers? Early on they can save everyone and after decades of evolution they can’t hit a barn door at two paces or see a floating car driving over their feet.

In other words – Star Wars as a franchise has made the fortunes and now is the time to raise the bar back to where it ought to be for the fans – the people who made the franchise worth the mega-bucks in the first place.

Or – Disney could turn it into a romantic, drippy pile of techno-goo and watch that $4bn investment really take-off…….

As someone great once said – just because you pay the big bucks doesn’t mean it’s worth the big bucks.

Happy reading

D.M. Jarrett

Sean Yeager Adventures

What is the best sci-fi film of all time?

What is the best sci-fi film of all time?

D.M. Jarrett author of sci-fi adventure series Sean Yeager Adventures speculates about the best sci-fi films of all time, many of which inspired generations of writers and creators.

It occurred to me the other day that writing is similar to script writing for films. I often find myself visualising how scenes would work and how the characters would respond to situations when writing draft chapters. I wonder how many have subconsciously influenced Sean Yeager and the DNA Thief?

So here is my personal short-list of what I consider to be the finest sci-fi films ever made. Of course it is a subjective list and a bit of fun and there are plenty of other good films not on this list. I have for example not included lighter entertainment films out of personal choice (e.g. E.T.,  Close Encounters, Starman, Jurassic Park.) This is because taken as a whole I’m not that keen on them.

#15 Sunshine: Perhaps a marmite film. Well I liked it and watched it several times over. It’s a bit like the anti-Solaris.

#14 Dr Who The Dalek Invasion of Earth: Sure it’s dated and not strictly a film but for me a very good take on the whole theme with a genuinely threatening enemy and with William Hartnell as Dr Who.

#13 Fifth Element: Yes it’s derivative, yes it’s silly in places but it’s also a lot of fun and highly watchable

#12 Terminator 1 & 2: while the story was repeated three times in my view, the first had the most impact especially in the mirror cutting scene and the final moments. And for me the second had the best Terminator.

#11 The Matrix: stylish and thought provoking action, until it all became a bit silly in later episodes. Only let down by the complete lack of trying not to stand out inside The Matrix – I mean all black gear and sunglasses?

#10 Solaris: thought provoking and unsettling space drama

#9 The Day the Earth Stood Still 1972 – ahead of its time and strangely realistic

#8 2001 A Space Odyssey: slow, moving and thematically realistic with beautiful cinematography. It pulls you in and keeps you in space.

#7 Avatar: Great effects, decent ideas, story was okay if not entirely believable or plausible. Still watched it three times in a week (and didn’t expect to like it) Shame about some silliness that crept into the final act.

#6 Star Wars IV – entertaining, ground breaking and very watchable (until Jabba the Hutt received more scenes in later cuts) Silly in parts – noises in space, stormtroopers who never seem to shoot straight, understanding a Wookie with two kinds of growl.

#5 Star Wars V – The Empire Strikes Back; darker and better made than the rest of the franchise. Of course The Empire kicks ass, why wouldn’t they? Even allowing for the giant walking dogs.

#4 Invasion of the Bodysnatchers: given its age one of the best sci-fi horror films ever made, watch it again if you don’t believe me.

#3 The Thing 1982: a very scary film that stands up to repeat viewings, on first viewing you have no idea what is going to happen next.

#2 Bladerunner: Consistently involving with plausible characters, tech and genuinely touching scenes and score.  I prefer the later cuts and added back-in scenes personally. Can seem a bit slow in places.

#1 Alien  (tied) The original and very scary, try watching it at night on your own…

#1 Aliens (tied) More of everything and works brilliantly as a comment on gung-ho military leadership as well as a shoot-em up

Happy film watching

D.M. Jarrett

Sean Yeager Adventures