This short novel follows the exploits of Trip and Rudy as they roam a post-apocalyptic America in their armored, nuclear-powered, antique Dodge.
The main characters aren’t likeable. They’re thieves and conmen. They’re sexist, sex-obsessed, buffoons who are perpetually high, or drunk, or both. Their only redeeming quality is that they are not worse. They don’t kick puppies, well, not that we know, although one did kick a cat.
They are funny, though, but in a vulgar, base kind of way. They are clowns to be laughed at rather than identified with, and the humor relies on sex, drugs, guns, zombies, and lots of beer. The banter between the characters as they interact with these things can be quite entertaining in a juvenile sort of way.
The setting is imaginative, and there are clever, satirical bits, like the self-expanding mega store used as a weapon that creates zombie associates and shoppers, and the Sisters of No Mercy, nuns who seem to regard sex as a sacrament.
I’m a bit torn about this book. It’s quite good for what it is—crude, juvenile humor. It’s just that this particular type of comedy has limited appeal to me, personally. I tired of it quickly, but I can recommend it for those who like this kind of thing.
Related Post: Book Review – Rocketship Patrol by J.I. Greco
Junior Officer (Probationary) Dana Loy of the Drantini Unified Police and Emergency Service (DUPES) gets her first duty fresh out of the Academy. She is assigned to an aging patrol ship guarding, or, more accurately, largely ignoring a quiet sector of space. The only other officer on the ship is her incompetent commander, Lieutenant Detective Hackenthrush, although he is renting out an extra cabin to an alien civilian.
During her first day, they detect a drifting lifeboat at the edge of their patrol sector. In accordance with the well-know truism that good deeds do not go unpunished, they become unwittingly involved in a massive and dangerous police sting operation as a result.
The main character of this short book is the woman they rescue. Charlene Cortez is mostly human, although she has a whizz-bang cybernetic arm. I’d say more about her but it would be a spoiler, so I won’t. Let’s just say she has connections with the Galactic Authority Police.
And then there’s Igon, an untrustworthy, lovesick robot.
All of the characters are fun, often simply silly. There is nothing profound or insightful about them. They may make you smile, but they won’t make you think (to misquote Jethro Tull from Thick as a Brick – a great classic rock album, which has nothing to do with this book).
Rocketship Patrol is a pulp Sci-Fi novella that intentionally parodies the books from the 1950s and 1960s. At 31,000 words (about 100 paperback pages if it were available in paperback, which it’s not) it is about a third the length of a regular novel. I picked up a copy during a recent free Kindle promotion and read it the same evening. I noted a few typos, but not many more than I normally find in traditionally published books.
I recommend this for pulp Sci-Fi fans interested in a short, fun read.