Imagine my surprise on Monday when I received a Twitter mention by a reviewer of Tom’s Hardware Italy with the title “Red Desert, suspense, adventure, and sex on Mars” and a link to the famous web magazine.
Now I want to share this with you. I’ve translated the review below. Enjoy!
Red Desert, suspense, adventure, and sex on Mars
The series of Italian science fiction books Red Desert narrates the first journey to Mars with a compelling, credible and suspenseful narrative.The first human journey to Mars, what the settlers will find on the Red Planet and how the space research will evolve starting from then. Concrete curiosities that many ordinary people are raising, fed by the puzzle of incoming images from the rover exploration, and many projects involving engines, Martian homes, space cultivation and more.
Rita Carla Francesca Monticelli put all the pieces together and published an interesting series of four books in which she recounts in a fictional key our first journey to Mars, followed in November, by a fifth episode “L’isola di Gaia” (trans: “The Isle of Gaia”) set 35 years after the last events of the Red Desert series.
Science fiction stories about Mars abound, we decided to tell you about Red Desert because it is a case of a self-publishing success Made in Italy, and because the four novels (now also in a single volume) have several remarkable aspects. The first is that the author carried a patient, painstaking job of study on all the documents published by NASA about Mars: the reconstructed landscape is not the fruit of her imagination, but in the books it is true to what we know at the moment, as well as the climate, the housing units in which settlers live, livelihood systems and means of transport.
Second, Monticelli played cunning: she has a degree in Biological Sciences, and has fielded her expertise for the main character around which the whole story is narrated, which is an exobiologist. The research, the events that she faces and their consequences are invented with skill and become credible within the speculative narration.
A good dose of imagination is obviously not lacking, as well as suspense, sex, adventure, and unexpected events that drive the story with a gentle hand up to its end. Not to mention one of the most critical elements of a mission like the one described, namely the psychological component, which becomes a central aspect of the story with which it is difficult to come to terms.
It would not be surprising to find this series in a TV show, one of those that keep viewers glued to their TV set.
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