Claus Boxed 2

A Science Fiction Holiday Adventure
Narrated by: James Killavey
Series: Claus Series, Book 4-6
Length: 26 hrs and 20 mins
5 out of 5 stars (12 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The Christmas adventures continue. The second volume of the holiday tales you never heard growing up....

Humbug

Eb Scrooge is left to run Avocado, Inc., an innovative technology business, all alone. An introverted shut-in locked away in a Colorado mansion, only his servant droids keep him company. Until the gifts arrive.

The Miser

When Kandi’s dad gets a mysterious call, they fly to a tropical island. Despite the heat, his sunburned client wears a heavy cloak. The world doesn’t know it yet, but Santa Claus is missing. Kandi knows where he is. 

Ronin

There's one Christmas story no one has ever heard, the legend of the biggest and baddest reindeer of them all, the one who leads the sleigh and protects the herd. Billy Big Game doesn’t want to discover the last reindeer. He wants to capture him.

©2018 Tony Bertauski (P)2018 Tony Bertauski

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  • Al
  • 01-27-19

What the Dickens, Bertauski style

Before we start, let it be known that I listened to the audiobook version.

I've experienced the author's work before, and it's usually fun, clever and plays with your mind a little. Or a lot. This threesome of tales is no different, although for whatever reason, they didn't do it for me this time. The stories are all related to some degree, and as the title might suggest, revolve around Christmas.

The first, Humbug, is my favourite. A retelling of A Christmas Carol, Ebenezer Scrooge runs a technology company, and has fame, fortune and so forth. However, he's also a jerk, so he's none too popular. When he starts having dreams and believing his dead partner, Jacob Marley, is visiting him at night, his life starts to spiral out of control. This is Tony Bertauski, so this isn't about some crotchety old git changing his ways. Instead there's robots, malicious code, holograms and so forth. It's good fun watching Eb lose his mind.

The second tale, The Miser, is about a girl who's dragged off on a mystery job on a tropical island by her dad. However, who is voice who controls the island, and who are these kids who are popping up all over the place? This one entails cloning and links into the other stories in the author's holiday adventure series.

Finally, we have Ronin. This has an interesting premise of a woman who wants to have Christmas every day, and part of the plan involves a Big Brother (TV show, not 1984) type scenario where the groups are split into Naughties and Nicies, But they didn't count on Ronin, a badass reindeer who has other plans.

Did I mention this was an audiobook? The narrator was absolutely the best thing about the trilogy, adding life and a seasonal vibe to the proceedings. I could easily imagine him narrating Frosty the Snowman or the Grinch, and I'll have to check out what else he's done..

The stories are pretty good, and enjoyable enough, but I enjoyed them less than Maze or the Socket Greeny saga. Still, if you want some Christmassy sci-fi this is worth a listen. Or a read.

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A Christmas Story Retold

Scrooge with robots, Santa kidnapped, and an unheralded reindeer named Ronin. Entertainingly unique. I was gifted this from the author.