I just finished reading Tumber, by Brand Gamblin. While I was reading I couldn’t put it down, and now that I’m finished, I find I enjoyed it very much.
Elizabeth Carter sets off to earn her fortune mining the…asteroid belt. When she gets there, she finds it’s harder than she could have imagined, and the deck is stacked against her.
What follows is a big dose of up-by-your-bootstraps Horatio Alger, a tinge of Randian-ism at war with a tub of frontier collectivism, a dash of geology and metallurgy, and a medium dose of growing-up. Nothing goes as planned, and action and adversity abound. She starts off with an all-consuming anger and empty pockets. Does she end up with an open heart and a gold-plated life? Read the book to find out!
Carter (nicknamed "Tumbler"; why? Read the book) is a little too perfect and pure and heroic, and in her perfection is a bit of a cypher. Gamblin starts her so fresh in the New World that I never knew anything about any family she left behind, what she was running from, or anything else that could color her personality. I found the characters around her to be more interesting and complex. The few times Carter slowed down long enough to talk about her feelings, I really didn’t find insight into her character, but again, I suspect that’s simply because of her purity.
I know Brand Gamblin. He’s my friend. We worked together at Acclaim, years ago, making video games. In my younger years, I would have been terribly jealous; he’s just as good a programmer as me, AND now an excellent fiction writer! As it stands now, I’m just terribly happy for him, and want to read many more books by him.