Alien Thought by Dan Donoghue (Science Fiction/Young Adult)

 
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Chuck Gregory for Timeless Tales Book Reviews (http://www.timeless-tales.net)
Rating: 4.0

Dave Duggan is a seventeen-year-old whose hormones drive him to do whatever Jenny and Mary Graeme want him to do, that day when he runs into them in the woods. They convince him (all it takes is a couple of 'accidental' glimpses of panties) to lead them to the top of the local mountain - they'd tried on their own, but all the paths they could find were fenced off and had "No Trespassing" signs. The hike turns into a hair-raising adventure when things start to die around them. Dave himself almost dies in a strange attack; searing pain through his whole body causes him to pass out. He wakes, drowning, for he fell into the creek, but the pain seems to disappear while he is underwater. By taking painful breaths only when necessary, he is able to survive.

What could have caused these bizarre deaths? They seem localized to a specific area - could it be some poison sprayed from an airplane, whose destination has gone awry? Dave's dog is dead, the girls are frightened, and Dave's emotions are battling for control with the semblance of rational thought that is left.

The police are less than receptive to Dave's report of what happened. It seems that Mary has come to town because she got into trouble - drug trouble - in Sydney. Her reputation causes the 'pigs' to suspect that Dave is 'on dope' and his parents are gullible enough to believe it. When some people die, surrounded by lots of dead birds, the town authorities start to listen to Dave's story - and soon, the army shows up and cordons off the woods leading to the mountain.

I'll not spoil the story by telling any more. Suffice it to say that the excitement continues, the hormones continue to operate, and the reader is compelled to keep going - and going, and going--until the conclusion is reached. This isn't one you put aside for days, and even a few hours away from it feel like an interruption.

I'll be looking for more from Dan Donoghue. He says that the 'formative years' of the late teens can be the most exciting time of a person's life. His experience teaching English in Queensland, combined with his fascination for the possibility of mind powers beyond the norm, provides the perfect background for novels like this one. His subject matter and fast-paced plotting are reminiscent of the young Andre Norton, or Robert A. Heinlein. He has produced a good book that is fun to read. It's not a great novel, but I enjoyed it; I will look for greatness in that nebulous future where all things are possible.
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Sheri McGathy, Author of Elfen Gold
Dave Duggan would never have guessed that morning when he awoke that his world was about to change. Would never have imagined that his life would be forever altered by events soon to be set in motion.

It was an average day, His plans simple... to practice his aim at the local shooting range. But he hadn't planned on Jenny Graeme and her alluring cousin, Mary Graeme, to ask him to guide them up the side of the local mountain.

The moment he agreed to take them, things changed...his beliefs altered. Something unseen on that mountain was killing the animals, killing the people. Something mentally seeking him.

"Alien Thought", by Dan Donoghue, is an intriguing science fiction story written for young adults. I found Mr. Donoghue's ability to write from the viewpoint of a seventeen year old boy quite believable and never doubted the actions of his young cast.

I especially enjoyed experiencing the flavor of the country and learning the local terms and customs gracing each page. An interesting and enjoyable read.
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Jennifer LB Leese, ASTORYWEAVER'S Book Reviews
Seventeen-year-old Dave Duggan is an average teenager whose ordinary Saturday turns into adventure when a few girls from his school ask for him to help them find their way through the mountains past the town. Once they enter an area of rainforest, things begin to go awry. Mysteriously things around them start to die, and an unidentified entity almost takes Dave's life. Now that danger has entered their journey through the mountains, Dave and the girls begin to wonder what could be causing the unexplained happenings, and further into their trip, they find out.

Can Dave get the girls to the other side of the mountain without further endangering them all? Find out the sinister details of Mr. Donoghue's book for young adults by getting your copy of ALIEN THOUGHT from Writers Exchange E-Publishing today.

Dan Donoghue grew up in country Queensland where he received his primary education in small one-teacher schools and where he completed his secondary education at boarding school in Cairns. Mr. Donoghue went on to gain a Bachelor of Education degree at the University of Queensland, and spent many years teaching English in Queensland schools. He began writing novels from his love of reading, and as a form of stress management, and he has always been fascinated by the possibility of mind powers beyond the norm where much of his writing shows this.

Mr. Donoghue has successfully put together a book that I'm positive you will be delighted with that is full of intrigue, adventure, and a little bit of romance.

This reviewer found ALIEN THOUGHT to be extremely fascinating. The characters are life-like and the dialogue is fitting to the genre as well as to the character's personalities.
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Christine Spindler, E-Books for Kids (http://www.dreamwater.com/spindler)
Dave Duggan, 17 years old and easily tempted by a pair of beautiful legs, helps two girls to find their way into the mountains. All goes well, but when they reach the rainforest, dead birds fall out of the trees. Dave runs to help his dog, who seems to be in agony, and is hit by an unbearable pain that almost kills him. He manages to outrun the mysterious attack, but everything around him is dead, even the butterflies. He finds the girls, scared but alive.

After their narrow escape, they wonder what kind of poison caused the deaths. Dave reports the incident to the police, but they don't believe him. Instead they raid his room because they think he was on drugs and imagined the catastrophe.

But then six men die in the mountain and the mystery unfolds in all its chilling scariness. There must be something alive and dangerous up there.

"Alien Thought" is a breath-taking science-fiction novel, spell-binding from the first page and never losing its pace.

The tension keeps building up and up until you can hardly bear it. But the horror is wonderfully balanced by romantic moments, philosophical dialogs and touching revelations. A well-rounded book with intriguing characters. Excellently written.
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Rita Hestand for Romancing the Web Reviews
Hold onto your hat, if you think Blue Lagoon was good, wait till you try Alien Thought. It isn't the writing, in itself, it isn't the plot, it's turning everything upside down and still making some kind of sense of it.

Alien Thought is told by Dave Duggan the "hero" of the story. On an ordinary day, Dave Duggan is approached by the most unlikiest two girls in his realm of living to find a trail down the mountain. Dave being the good ole boy he is, and desperately trying to keep his hormones from raging out of control agrees to help the two girls. Everything is as normal as it should be until they reach a certain point and birds literally start falling from the sky, dead. Dave's dog, Trixie, dies, and Dave is spun into some kind of painful void.

What has happened, they don't know. Something is sending pain through Dave like nothing he's ever encountered. But regardless the three of them make it home and try to report this odd incident to the authorities. No one believes them till dead people start being discovered.

As impossible as it seems Mary Graeme and Dave Duggan become friends and Mary's dog disappears. Dave suspects he is on the mountain and might have ended up like Trixie. He offers to check it out.

But there's something on that mountain and Dave and Mary, like any red blooded teenager have to find out what. So off they go. The pain returns, and they barely escape with their lives. Still Dave isn't satisfied and Mary knows her dog is up there, she's seen him.

It doesn't take long to realize that Aliens are among them. And they are killing people. Somehow Dave has to stop them, he realizes he has survived the pain that the alien sends out, so he's elected to seek them out.

During this time, he and Mary go skinny dipping. Dave's love interest peeks, but he's a perfect gentleman and Mary respects him no end for it. The Aliens leave gold treasures all around for Dave to collect the treasure. In return, Dave brings them books, in hopes they might learn to communicate.

D.C. Donoghue doesn't know the meaning of dull. He also turns rights and wrongs into pure fantasy and interesting reading. Never in all my reviewing have I read a book so eager to break all the rules and yet so entertaining it enthralls you into forgiving him. This book is like none other. True, it has bits and pieces of books that have captured wide audiences, but twists and turns like you don't expect.

How does ones describe a book that shocks and entices at the same time. Not for the faint at heart, this book is compelling because of it's offbeat nature. It goes where no man has gone. It makes you laugh, cry, feel. It defies nature. I kept telling myself I didn't like it, yet eagerly turned the page for more. Never have I read anything like this one, and I give it a five for originality.
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