"great space opera"
In the far distant future, mankind has colonized so many
worlds that they are perceived to be a threat by the
Communers, an insect like race with a hive mentality.
Humanity doesn't know about this deadly enemy because the
Communers prefer to remain in the shadows using guerrilla
tactics and other races to destroy their enemy. Terran
colony ships housing ten million humans are being given
drugs that will cause mass destruction.
The Stone Cowboys, led by teenagers Kerry Korrigan and Jim
Endicott figure out the truth and hijack the Kolumban ship,
the Endeavor, killing all its' crew save one. Somehow,
some way, they intend to stop the Kolumbans from producing
the drugs that will harm humanity. However when he learns
that the Communers deceived the Kolumbans, Jim must come up
with a plan that will save both races from their common
William Shatner of Star Trek fame has made the transition
from actor to writer very successfully. His "Quest For
Tomorrow" series is great space opera in the tradition of
Arthur C. Clarke and Andre Norton. SHADOW PLANET is full
of heroic action, exotic aliens, and a young, bright,
charismatic leader (think Luke Skywalker) who takes an ex-
gang and forms them into a fierce fighting unit.
Reviewed by PNR Group Member
Posted October 2, 2002
The ultimate destiny of humankind hangs in the balance in
the gripping space saga.
A less likely group of saviors has never before jockeyed a
great starship across the heavens-but Jim Endicott and the
Stone Cowboys are suddenly the last hope of humanity. A
street-toughened gang of thugs and hoodlums, they have
already proved their mettle, staunching the flow of the
killer drug that turned the world-sized intergalactic vessel
Outward Bound into a gargantuan battlefield-cum-graveyard.
Now, in a ship hijacked from the alien suppliers of the
lethal narcotic and renamed Endeavor, the outlaw heroes are
rocketing toward a grim confrontation they cannot avoid and,
most likely, will not survive: a war to the death that will
be waged on the enemy's home turf.
But first a motley group of street fighters-the scum of the
galaxy, by all standards of decent people everywhere -- must
be molded into a trained and disciplined commando unit. And
that's where Jim Endicott comes in. Once hoping to join the
Space Academy, now the untried captain of a stolen starship
and its misfit crew, he has already altered one past using
the astonishing powers of Omega, but the deadly challenge
that lies ahead dwarfs any he has previously encountered.
And within the Endeavor's close confines tension and unrest
are perilously brewing, threatening to erupt in a
devastating explosion of blood and mutiny that will have to
be dealt with-brutally yet with finesse.
And after that ... the future is a terrifying question mark.
For the roots of the fiendish galactic plot to obliterate
the human "cancer" and end its expansion to the stars reach
deep into dark, unknown, and inescapable places. And the
only champions courageous -- and foolhardly -- enough to
venture there are Endicott and his small band of cutthroat
Cowboys, who have nothing in the universe left to lose.