Motes by Tilmer Wright Jr.

Thom Finch has an active imagination, too active sometimes, according to his father. He can lose himself for hours in his daydreams: commanding armies, saving other planets, or just watching the action unfold. It was on one such occasion that Thom notices something strange. While watching the dust motes float in the sunlight streaming through his window (two armies battling each other for love and honor) he realizes that one of them isn’t moving…at all. But how is that possible? He tries to convince himself he is (once again) imagining things, but the more he tries to convince himself the more he realizes it actually is stationary. He wants to show people, but how does he prove it? Who will believe him? His journey to separate fact from fiction will take him places even he couldn’t imagine. The Mu’ahi are a miniscule alien race no bigger than a speck of dust. They are devoted to their faith and their creator, and they have a strong sense of survival, but there is a problem- their planet is dying. They are out of the resources they desperately need. So they send out scavenger teams to find what they need to survive. Little do they know this trip will test them in more ways than one. Adventure is waiting whether they are ready or not, and their sense of faith and duty will be pushed to the limit.

Motes is a sci-fi adventure full of life, faith, family, and duty. The writing is superb: Tilmer Wright Jr has written Motes in a very easy, free-flowing way that doesn’t get confusing when going between dreams and reality, Thom and the Mu’ahi. He bridges the gap between reality and fantasy in a very genuine, intelligent, and amusing way. The main characters all bring a different feel and point of view to the story, but it doesn’t get distracting. One of the best things about Motes is it brings us a hero that has always wanted to be a hero; someone who has always wanted to be a part of the story. That is Thom. Growing up with an artistic mother and an academic father has both expanded and stifled Thom’s imagination. His mother fully supports him, but his dad thinks he is wasting his time. He wants to make his dad happy, but he can’t change who he is. Thom escapes into his imagination and loves making up stories and adventures. So it is perfect that he winds up being the hero that is needed. The Mu’ahi’s faith and sense of duty is very present; you know at once those are the most important things in a Mu’ahi’s life, but you also understand their struggle to hold on to that when things get tough. We have all been in these characters’ shoes at one point in life and it makes it that much easier to empathize with them. Aliens and knights, academics and dreamers, Motes has them all. A wonderful read, Wright brings together science, technology, and faith seamlessly to bring us a thrilling adventure.

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