Galaxy of Fear: Planet Plague

March 9, 2018 at 6:00 pm (Reads) (, , , )

plagueGalaxy of Fear: Planet Plague by John Whitman


So, Wedge Antilles makes an appearance in this book. I can’t say it’s unexpected, since Luke, Han, and Leia appeared in the first two books, and then Boba Fett and Dr. Evazan appeared in the second one, but it smacks of fan service. Yes, it’s a kids’ book, and the audience is probably looking for those characters, but I can’t help but feel like everything coming back to the Skywalkers and the handful of characters that orbit around them makes the Expanded Universe feel that much smaller.

In Planet Plague, Zak and Tash are menaced by some shapeless, infectious blobs (as seen on the cover over there). It turns out that these blobs are connected to the person-eating planet in Eaten Alive and the zombies in City of the Dead, but we don’t see a lot of progress toward that connection, other than to make it. Whitman is working toward a final adventure that connects these plots, but not the way that Jude Watson did with her series. That’s not a bad thing, mind you, but it’s good to know ahead of time that these books aren’t quite on that level.

Whitman still does a great job with his characters (strangely, DV-9’s development is most interesting to me), but his antagonists here are too cartoonish. There’s no real motivation or understanding them; they just want to destroy. It’s easy to say, “Well, this is a kids’ series”, but other juvenile books handle their villains better. Maybe it was never intended to be that deep, though; this is, after all, a series trying to cash in on Goosebumps.

Aside from a sudden ending, though, this is still a solid read. Whitman tells a good tale, even if it pales when you compare it to Watson’s body of work. It’s not enough to make me want to read other books he’s written, but his name wouldn’t turn me off of reading a book, either.

Started: December 27, 2017
Finished: December 27, 2017

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