Hosting (The Core #1)


SCI-FI:  A coma patient’s life takes a drastic turn when an alien life force makes him an offer he can’t refuse.  Jamie Waters begins a quest to locate and deactivate a powerful artifact.  While hosting the alien, Jamie learns about a universal energy accessible to all life forms.  Only with a specially created artifact can humans tap into the Core’s energy to influence events for good or evil.  With instruction and exercises, Jamie graduates to a new level consciousness and power.  A betrayal eventually leads him on a new quest that rewards him with happiness and love.  With a lethal threat on its way to Earth, he must prove what the human race is capable of achieving or all that he loves will be destroyed.


Mr. Skinner thoughtfully approaches the reader with a blend of science fiction, philosophy, and spirituality.  The concepts of morality, intelligent extraterrestrial life, conscious energy, and humankind’s connection with the universe are delved into with sincere intentions.  At first, the dialogue is thought-provoking, but the narrative does not add complexity to the characterizations; a feeling of intimacy isn’t established.   The reader is told the character’s actions and emotions throughout the story with too much attention to extraneous information so it doesn’t serve to push the story forward.  A feeling of urgency in Jamie’s quests would have helped with the pacing.  Near the story’s end, a true sense of tension makes an appearance with imminent danger approaching.  At times, “Hosting” is provocative, however, and Mr. Skinner’s underlying message is positive.   


Anna Fitzgerald