Customer Reviews for

The Worker Prince

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  • Posted September 28, 2011

    Blurbs

    "Bryan Thomas Schmidt's "The Worker Prince" will appeal to readers of all ages. Bryan deftly explores a world where those who believe in one God labor against oppressors, and a single man may have the power to change their situation for the better. But will he be able to rise above all that his powerful uncle has taught him?" - Brenda Cooper, Author of The Silver Ship and the Sea and Mayan December
    "If your reader's heart longs for the Golden Age of Science Fiction-when good was good and bad was bad, and great characters fought against universal odds-then The Worker Prince is for you. Good, retro fun for the whole family."- Jason Sanford (author of Never Never Stories and Interzone contributor)
    "I found myself thinking of stories that I read during my (misspent) youth, including Heinlein juveniles and the Jason January tales, as well as Star Trek and Star Wars."
    - Redstone SF on "The Worker Prince" series (Book 1 forthcoming, October 4, 2011, Diminished Media)
    "In The Worker Prince, Bryan Thomas Schmidt combines elements from the Biblical story of Moses with exciting outer space action to create a satisfying hero's journey that is well worth taking." - David Lee Summers, Author of The Solar Sea/Editor of Tales Of The Talisman.
    "Bryan Thomas Schmidt's love for Science Fiction comes through on every page. The Worker Prince is fun for any age." - Maurice Broaddus, Author of The Knights Of Breton Court and King's Justice.
    "A thoroughly enjoyable science fiction adventure epic. I'm looking forward to the next book!" - Jaleta Clegg, Author of Nexus Point and Autumn Visions.
    "A significant new author in the field of space opera - Bryan is a fresh new imagination to watch out for!" - Grace Bridges, author of Faith Awakened and Legendary Space Pilgrims
    "Retro-with-a-twist SF brimming with an infectious enthusiasm!" - Saladin Ahmed, author Throne Of the Crescent Moon (forthcoming)

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 5, 2012

    An Excellent Space Opera

    A very well written book, and a story very well told. It's nice to read a book where the heroes are heroes and the villains are villains. I thoroughly enjoyed the combination of the Moses story with the Sci-Fi themes (although, the Moses story only involves the premise--it is by no means a mere retelling). The allusions to "Old Earth" gave the story a good grounding and a rich history. It's also nice to see a first-book-in-a-series that is able to work as a stand-alone novel. My only complaints: The names in the book along with some of the vehicles and robots were just a little too Sci-Fi-ey for me, and I would have liked to have seen the romance sub-plot stretched out just a little longer. Other than that, it's a great book to pick up. I would highly recommend it even if you are new to Sci-Fi.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 2, 2012

    fast-paced and deftly-told

    Davi Rhii is a prince of the Boralian people and a newly-minted military officer, but he's about to find he's much more than that. After discovering his roots as the son of Workers (people on another world enslaved by the Boralians), he is forced to decide to which side to support--and is drawn into a solar-system-spanning battle for freedom. Along the way, he has to face down his own entrenched cultural assumptions, and finds a new faith by embracing the one God of the Workers.

    Bryan Thomas Schmidt's debut novel is a fast-paced and deftly-told space opera adventure set in a well-envisoned political and social environment. It is classic space adventure in all the right ways, with plenty of action, twists, and characters with emotional depth. (It also has one reversal of a 'classic' trope that I liked--instead of the main character starting as a worker and discovering he's really a prince, it's the other way around.) Schmidt also pulls off the tricky task of incorporating religion into his story without alienating non-religious readers; it is plainly expressed but never 'preachy.' I very much enjoyed the tale, and look forward to further volumes in the series.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2011

    A significant new author in the field of space opera

    I was lucky enough to get a peek at this book well before it went to press, and I immediately saw that here was something unusual - something I hadn't seen before. Surprising, really, when one considers how perfect is this match of story and setting: mix Moses with space, swapping ancient Egypt for a distant star system, and you have a really amazing starting point.

    But it isn't just a rehashed version of the old story. Bryan has added multiple layers of story - history, conflict, societies in turmoil, intrigue within the government, rebel forces training to take back their planet, and so much more.

    It's obvious that Bryan is well-versed in the worlds of space opera, drawing on known standards and building on them wherever appropriate. I love the cover, too - an accurate banner for what you'll find inside: one man's story of upheaval and freedom.

    A significant new author in the field of space opera - Bryan is a fresh new imagination to watch out for! Kudos to all the publishing team at Diminished Media for an awesome first novel.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 27, 2011

    The Apex Review For You

    The Worker Prince Bryan Thomas Schmidt ISBN: 9780984020904 Diminished Media Group Reviewed By Renee Washburn Official Apex Reviews Rating: 4 stars As Prince of the Boralian people, Davi Rhii couldn¿t live a more charmed life; however, when he discovers the truth of his lineage and upbringing, the charm quickly fades away. Originally born as a member of the worker underclass, Davi was secretly adopted by the Boralian royalty. Furthermore, his uncle Xalivar, High Lord Councillor of the Alliance, is single-handedly responsible for all the strife and turmoil that the workers have suffered through the years. Suddenly finding himself at a momentous crossroads, Davi is ultimately forced to decide between abandoning his native-born brethren or turning his back on the only family he¿s ever known... The Worker Prince is quite the engaging read. Though his premise may not be entirely original, author Bryan Thomas Schmidt successfully breathes exciting new life into a familiar, yet classic storyline. Skillfully framing Davi¿s ongoing internal struggle, Schmidt enables the reader to empathize with his protagonist¿s considerable predicament. Facing the truth of his existence in one hand and an accustomed life in the other, Davi is understandably torn between the dueling forces of love and loyalty. As such, readers are sure to relate to not only the difficulty of his daunting quest for redemption, but also the very need for him to embark on it in the first place. A highly compelling read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 21, 2011

    Potential for a great series is boundless

    At first glance, The Worker Prince by Bryan Thomas Schmidt is an unassuming space opera work of science fiction. But as the reader gets drawn into the pages, one will find a wide array of literary elements. Though at times the story moves a bit quicker than the action calls for, the overall content is well worth the reader¿s time. The most obvious literary correlation is with the biblical story of Moses. Just like the Hebrew prophet, Davi Rhii is also born to slaves but secretly raised by royalty after a decree to eliminate firstborn males is issued. In this case it is Miri of the Boralian people who takes the child in as her own. Not knowing about his true heritage, Davi excels through the Borali Military Academy as he is groomed to replace his uncle Xalivar, the High Lord Councilor of the Alliance. Through a chain of coincidental discoveries, Davi soon begins to piece together his hidden past. As a rebellion grows amongst the worker slaves of the planet Vertullis, he must choose sides between the imposing people who raised him and those of a past he never knew about. Another comparison can be made with the popular George Lucas¿ saga Star Wars. Just like Luke Skywalker, Davi is also a young man who is just learning about his true heritage. Both are also thrust to the forefront of a violent rebellion where they become symbols of honor and integrity, providing hope for those fighting for their freedom. Be it in the air or on the ground, Davi¿s actions spur on all those around him to fight the enemy with resolve and faith. If the reader is familiar with the elements of a heroes¿ journey outlined by Joseph Campbell¿s Monmouth analogies, this first book of the Davi Rhii saga also shows some of the same features of an archetypical hero character. Davi¿s initial call to adventure and subsequent refusal of the call are entwined in his realization of his true worker heritage and his cling to a princely life. The inclusion of a spiritual element is also examined as Davi learns from his worker family the strength in prayer which has helped them endure oppression for many years. Rounding out some of the key elements of a true archetypal hero¿s journey, one can even see the crossing of the threshold and facing his enemy as a final trial, which in this case is Davi¿s foreseeable confrontation with his uncle. No, this is not a simple story, but a complex piece of work. The overall character development in The Worker Prince may seem sparse or rushed at times, but the intricate plot alone is enough to carry the reader along. This being the first leg of a series, there is still plenty of room to slow down and build on some of the key characters as Bryan Thomas Schmidt depicts this absorbing world. Drawing on strong literary elements which are key to this type of fiction, the potential for the series is boundless.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 13, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    A Great Adventure Story

    Davi begins life as a worker child, born to slaves and condemned to a life working where and when he's ordered. For the most part, the high tech society gives the workers a fairly good standard of living, but Lord Xalivar hates the workers and doesn't trust them to keep in their place. They want freedom for themselves and their children. Xalivar decrees all first-born sons of worker slaves will be sacrificed to his gods. Davi's parents steal a courier ship and outfit it for their infant son. They send him off by himself as the troops close in.

    Davi is found and raised by Xalivar's sister. He's a prince of the realm and Xalivar's heir-apparent. Until he and Xalivar learn the truth of his heritage. Davi runs away to join the growing worker rebellion. Xalivar's love for his adopted nephew turns to hate and bitterness as they face each other as opponents.

    If the story sounds a lot like the story of Moses and the Israelites against Pharoah and the Egyptians, it is. Schmidt has done a great job rewriting the historical tale into a science fiction adventure. He weaves a story of family ties, aggression, power, and love. Davi has everything - money, power, position - and he throws it away when he learns the truth of where he comes from and how his biological people are treated by his adopted family. If you're looking for characters with honor and integrity, who face tough choices with no clear answers, this is the book to read. I'm looking forward to book two and more of Davi's story.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 11, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    A Tale of Heart

    If Moses had led his people out of bondage in the future rather than the past, it might look something like this story. While at several points the story touches upon elements of the classic Biblical story of Moses leading his people out of Egypt, it doesn't stick to that story, nor is that the only plot line running through this science fiction, space opera style tale. One of the problems when people depict, either literally or by analogy, a Bible story is the predictable ending. That's not a worry here. The second half of the book bares little resemblance to the story of Moses. More like Joshua going to war. Three elements of this book make it worth reading. One is the world Mr. Schmidt has created. In this world, a group of planets is ruled by a limited king and legislative councils of the main races. Except one race is not represented because they are called "Workers." They mostly live on one planet, and the rulers treat them as slaves. Mr. Schmidt doesn't succumb to the tendency to dump a lot of back-story about this world on the reader, but it is worked through the story naturally. The only glitch for me is the rationale for why the Workers existed left me with more questions than answers and was hard to envision its evolution based on how things are now. The second reason I enjoyed this story was the plot itself. The king fears a prophecy that a worker will rise up to release his people from bondage. Like Moses, to avoid the king's decree that all worker's children under a certain age be killed, his parents arrange to ship him off to another world where he ends up being raised by the king's sister as the prince destined to rule the kingdom. The story proper picks up when Prince Davies takes his first assignment away from home, discovers his real birth, and the story unfolds from there. While it touches at points on the story of Moses, it was different enough to keep my interest and avoided being a pure repeat of that story.If a reader likes sci-fi battle action, there is plenty here especially through the second part of the book. The third is the characters are for the most part well drawn. One becomes attached to the main character, Davies, early on. Each character has a unique feel about them. The characters came across as believable on the whole. The only two instances his characterizations stretched it for me was Davies' secondary antagonist felt a bit too much of the stereotypical bully to me and the source of his antagonism to Davies was never clearly defined, though hinted at, but seemed stronger to me than merely family jealousy. And the girl Davies ends up in a relationship with seems to lose her initial antagonism toward him too easily. On rare occasion, the dialog felt unnatural. Despite that, I found the characters interesting and believable. There are three things that could detract from the story, depending on the reader. One, the story was written on the telly side, removing some of the emotion. Two, there were point of view shifts that needed nailing down. Three, if you aren't a Christian, you need to be aware this has Christian themes in it. I didn't feel those shortcomings reduced my enjoyment of the story or prevented me from finding Davies and the other characters interesting. Mr. Schmidt provides an engrossing story, believable characters, an interesting world, and decent writing. Because of that, I'm giving this a recommended read, holding onto a four out of five star score.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 29, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Moses Takes to the Stars

    If the premise sounds familiar ... well, it should. Bryan Thomas Schmidt has taken the classic Moses story -- child of slaves adopted by royalty and raised in ignorance of his true heritage until adulthood brings the truth and a culture-shaking change -- and has given it revitalized life by setting it in our own future among the stars. He's also made the story his own. If you think you know exactly what's going to happen to Davi Rhii just because you know how it all turned out for Moses, Pharoah and the rest, you'll find yourself surprised. In this first of a trilogy, the early touchstones of Moses' life are recognizable in Davi's, but there are also surprises.

    Many of those surprises come in the political machinations that move the characters and action. The Borallian Alliance is not Ancient Egypt, and while Lord High Chancelor Xalivar may resemble the Pharoahs in the Moses story, he is also very much his own character. Schmidt lays the groundwork of a very interesting set of world powers -- spread not over northern Africa and the middle eastern pennisula but rather across entire worlds.

    Davi's emotional journey is believable, from protected (but not holier-than-thou) young royal to confused rebel leader. Who is he? What does he really believe in? Which family, royal or worker, is his real family? Davi experiences a spiritual journey as well that is a bit rockier than Moses': the Borallian Alliance is a polyglot of Old Earth religions, pretty much polytheistic while not being especially spiritual, while the Workers are descended from the Evangelical Christians who settled Vertullis after a crash-landing and who maintain, and deeply believe in, the faith of their fathers. Davi struggles with understanding the worship of One God who plays a role in his believers' daily lives, and that struggle is not completely resolved by the end of Book One.

    If I have one complaint about the book (other than the fact that I need to wait for Schmidt to write the next one to see where the story goes), it is that the history of the Borallian Alliance and the Workers of Vertullis feels a little unclear. A conversation with the author clarified the issue for me, but while reading I was struggling with trying to figure out who from Old Earth colonized which planet and in what order. There are also races native to the system whose histories are not really explored but I assume will be in future books: how did these native races react to Human Colonization of nearby planets, what was first contact like, how were they assimilated into the Alliance, etc. It's background, but it's potentially fascinating background ... and background which could further enhance Davi Rhii's story by showing his effect on those native races.

    In short, Bryan Thomas Schmidt has taken a classic story and made it feel fresh. Davi Rhii is a character worth watching grow, and I look forward to the remainder of the trilogy to see how he does so.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 24, 2012

    Davi Rhii was raised in the luxury of the royal house and receiv

    Davi Rhii was raised in the luxury of the royal house and received rigorous military training. Upon graduating as a top pilot, he goes to his first assignment and discovers not only the darker side of his uncle's reign but also the truth about his own origins. The rest of the tale is about reconciling himself to his true identity and correcting his uncle's unjust leadership.

    The tale has heavy allegorical links the life of Moses, which makes the story rather predictable in some parts, but it does depart from that about a third of the way in. After that, the story takes off in its own direction. In a few places, things got a bit convoluted and I wasn't altogether sure which character was telling the tale. Those were few and infrequent.

    The characters were fascinating people, each with faults and failings that they had to deal with. There was enough backstory hidden away to understand the conflicts, and the detail in many places was well done. The book is overtly Christian (one character converts from a polytheistic religion to Christianity) without being preachy or sounding contrived. The elements blend in with the story well.

    I enjoyed the story and look forward to the next time I can come up for air and check out Part 2: The Returning.

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  • Posted July 25, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    It's not that often that a science fiction story bordering on sp

    It's not that often that a science fiction story bordering on space opera comes along that everyone will enjoy reading. That's what Schmidt accomplishes with the Worker Prince. Revolving around a recent graduate prince who leaves home for his first assignment only to discover his slave-class origins, the story mirrors that of the Biblical Moses in many aspects.

    While the main protagonist, Davi Rhii, does not spend 40 years in the dessert, he does wrestle with identity issues and the status quo of an empire built on the back of slave labor. The conflict that ensues is the classic story of one against the many. The result is watching an individual discover his unique place, and this is something most of us long for in our own lives.

    Schmidt finds a nice balance between moralizing and adventure in his tale that I thought suited anyone between the ages of 13 and dead.

    That being said, it didn't hit the sweet spot for me. I prefer a little more grime and grit in my space opera. Rhii is a champion and hero more along the lines of Luke Skywalker (without all the whining) and less like Han Solo. But the prose is elegant and well-paced.

    If you enjoy young adult literature, coming of age tales, and/or science fiction adventure then you'll enjoy The Worker Prince. Read it! Review it! Share it!

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  • Posted January 26, 2012

    A good read!

    SciFi is not one of my favorite genres, but Mr. Schmidt told me he thought I would enjoy his book since it was the story of Moses. I received a copy as a Christmas gift and found it to be a good read that I couldn't put down until I got it finished. I'm waiting for the next two episodes!

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  • Posted January 10, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    A Compelling Read

    As Prince of the Boralian people, Davi Rhii couldn’t live a more charmed life; however, when he discovers the truth of his lineage and upbringing, the charm quickly fades away. Originally born as a member of the worker underclass, Davi was secretly adopted by the Boralian royalty. Furthermore, his uncle Xalivar, High Lord Councillor of the Alliance, is single-handedly responsible for all the strife and turmoil that the workers have suffered through the years. Suddenly finding himself at a momentous crossroads, Davi is ultimately forced to decide between abandoning his native-born brethren or turning his back on the only family he’s ever known...

    The Worker Prince is quite the engaging read. Though his premise may not be entirely original, author Bryan Thomas Schmidt successfully breathes exciting new life into a familiar, yet classic storyline. Skillfully framing Davi’s ongoing internal struggle, Schmidt enables the reader to empathize with his protagonist’s considerable predicament. Facing the truth of his existence in one hand and an accustomed life in the other, Davi is understandably torn between the dueling forces of love and loyalty. As such, readers are sure to relate to not only the difficulty of his daunting quest for redemption, but also the very need for him to embark on it in the first place. A highly compelling read.


    Renee Washburn
    Apex Reviews

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