"Speculative fiction is so different today than it was back then. I wanted to write stuff a bit more recognizable to fans of my generation."
The author of four speculative fiction novels and one contemporary foray, Phil Stern strives to bring that older, classic style into books for the modern age. He has said that he wants his characters to be relateable to a wide number and variety of people. In that, I think he's hit the mark very well in his latest speculative novel, Rogue Powers.
In a world where supernatural powers are the plaything of royalty, commoners like Anson must hide their abilities for fear of torture and even death. When Anson forms an illegal bond with a powerful princess, he is whisked into a world of politics and intrigue where the wrong step could mean not only the end of his own life but of his loved ones, as well.
Rogue Powers was an interesting read, combining the powers of the X-Men with the world of high fantasy in a blend I didn't quite expect. The history and background of the world were well thought-out and the characters were easy to grow attached to. However, I did find myself jolted more than once by chapters that felt more like summaries, convenient scenarios that stopped just short of becoming cliche, and an overall writing style that needed more "show" and far less "tell."
Available on the Kindle for $2.99, this story definitely has some interesting concepts but the execution leaves a little something to be desired.
If you read Rogue Powers and would like to know more about the author, Phil Stern can be contacted at his website, his Facebook page, or on his Twitter feed @philstern100.