Thursday, June 6, 2019

Dining Out Around the Solar System Book 2 by Clare O'Beara Review

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Clare O'Beara
Print Length: 222 pages
ASIN: B00MW8IQXG

As we know from book one, the protagonists, Donal and Myron, are modest journalists and avid reader heroes who live in London. Myron reviews adult entertainment and Donal reviews restaurants. They use coded words to protect their information when speaking in public. In book one, they introduced the Ambassador of the Mercurian people to their news editor. They have many friends from other plants and enjoy ethnic restaurants. The book has information about London and its history, which is revealed as the journalists work through a wide variety of issues. There are moments of learning as well as laughter for the reader. As the book is written in British English, there is a glossary of London/Cockney terms at the end of the book for those not familiar with such.

Please see also the reviews for book 1book 3, and book 4.

The story begins with New Year’s Eve and a party including Antigrav barges and fireworks. Donal, being hypersensitive, has to look away from the lights from time to time. One of the snacks of this future life is soup cups that are self-heating and recyclable. Scents are rolled over the crowd, as do waves of heat during the celebration. We find out why Donal was adopted in this book, as well.

I like the focus on climate change which is mentioned during the story, and it is well explained. The author is a tree surgeon in real-life and has expertise in this area. The Thames has barriers which are raised during times of high water. Much of the country is underwater in this future setting. Other scientific information is discussed, as well. I learned a thing or two by reading this text.

Donal and Myron befriend Neptunian divers and kept in touch, which proves beneficial later in the story. Fashion is another thread so clothing is described, and knowing the fashion editor helps them understand a few things. 

Donal uses futuristic technology to try to track a girl who has red hair like him. We know the girl is not from Saturn because she has ears. When Donal meets the red-head girl, Tania, things become interesting, and the mystery begins. She earns a living by running a mushroom farm. A friend of Donal's wants to date Tania, Donal helps them meet, and Zeke and Tania begin to date. This becomes fateful for Zeke.

Book titles are mentioned by the characters, and one book I had not heard of was Penguins Stopped Play. I looked it up, it is a real book as are the others mentioned, and it looks interesting.

Donal and Myron notice employment violations, are able to meet sources for stories, and help some situations with immigrants. Issues of overcrowding, new immigrants, unfair wages, racism, and poverty are all story threads. Tania’s underground mushroom farm figures into these problems as the mystery is solved by the end of the story. The journalists work carefully with zine news rules and editors to be able to write their award-winning stories.

Dining Out Around the Solar System Book 2 by Clare O'Beara Review

Clare reads extensively and reviews books for Fresh Fiction.com. Her energies are focused on volunteering at WorldCon during August, 2019. She is a Facilities staff person and the MacGuyver for the Hugo Awards. 
Check out her books and sign up to her quarterly newsletter on:

I will be writing reviews of the other two books in this series this summer. See the post about book one in this series at this link.

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Thank you for reading,
Carolyn Wilhelm
Wise Owl Factory

You might also like the review of book one in this series:

   Dining Out Around the Solar System Book 2 by Clare O'Beara Review