Frontier Earth

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In Tombstone, 1881, there's many a person without a past. A man's business is his own, and folks don't ask a lot of questions. But Macklin is a man with no memory - and what he doesn't remember could kill him. For he is not of this world.... "A native of a distant planet, Macklin has been sent to Earth to warn humanity of a coming invasion. He's landed in the harsh territories of Arizona, and a terrible battle between the Earps and Clantons is about to erupt at the OK Corral. He's also been followed - by two ...
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Overview

In Tombstone, 1881, there's many a person without a past. A man's business is his own, and folks don't ask a lot of questions. But Macklin is a man with no memory - and what he doesn't remember could kill him. For he is not of this world.... "A native of a distant planet, Macklin has been sent to Earth to warn humanity of a coming invasion. He's landed in the harsh territories of Arizona, and a terrible battle between the Earps and Clantons is about to erupt at the OK Corral. He's also been followed - by two bounty hunters determined to kill him. As Macklin struggles to make sense of this new frontier, brief visions haunt his memory - flashes of death and destruction under a sky filled with strange stars. His attempts to remember who he is and where he comes from grow more and more desperate - because only in his past can Macklin find the key to stopping Earth's destruction.
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Editorial Reviews

VOYA
Macklin, if that is indeed his name, is a man without a memory sent to save Earth from ruin by alien forces. After the destruction of his ship, he has crashed in Arizona Territory near lawless Tombstone just as the blood feud between the Earps and the Clantons is about to culminate in the showdown at the O. K. Corral. Caught in the power struggle between these rival gangs, Macklin also is threatened by even more dangerous enemies. He is hunted by two members of Kra'agh, the alien race, the horrific Deathstalker and Painspinner, sent to stop Macklin's mission to save Earth. On the personal level, Macklin is also caught between two women, plucky Sarah Nevers, who helps him cope with life and the frontier, and beautiful Doris, who claims him as lover and partner. Actor Boxleitner, of the television series Babylon 5, has written a gripping pageturner, with welldrawn, believable characters and suitably creepy aliens. The novel is well paced, with delightful flashes of humor revealing Macklin as the ultimate greenhorn, alternating with chilling vignettes of the Kra'agh hunters encountering the humans and horses of the Old West. Recommend this title to older teens who enjoy alternate history science fiction. It also might appeal to horror and thriller fans. The ending of the novel suggests that the author plans a sequel. VOYA CODES: 4Q 2P S A/YA (Better than most, marred only by occasional lapses; For the YA with a special interest in the subject; Senior High, defined as grades 10 to 12; Adult and Young Adult). 1999, Ace, Ages 16 to Adult, 122p, $21.95. Reviewer: Jamie S. Hansen
Kirkus Reviews
Advanced space-humans and alien invaders go head-to-head in Tombstone, Arizona, in 1881. (western fans will exclaim, Aha!) Macklin and Doris are descendants of the lost Roanoke colony, some of whom were rescued and taken into space by benevolent aliens of the multispecies Associative. As Monitors, they keep an eye on Earth, but when the predatory alien Kra'agh attack their ship, they crash, separately, on Earth. His memory lost, Macklin wanders into Tombstone, where he finds a room at the boardinghouse of kindly and attractive widow Sarah Nevers. Inevitably, he gets mixed up with the Earp brothers and their allies. Meanwhile, the two ghastly Kra'agh hunters (they can eat terrestrial life-forms and feed on pain and fear) kill some humans, absorb the contents of their brains, disguise themselves with projected illusions, and creep in pursuit. Naturally, they side with the Clanton gang. Doris finally catches up with Macklin and helps him remember what's going on, but his intelligent Companion is damaged and requires rare elements for repair. The Kra'agh, however, have destroyed the Monitors' Moon base and are poised to invade Earth. They try to trap Macklin at the OK Corral, playing their part in the historic shootout, then attack the boardinghouse and grab Sarah. Doris will attempt to rendezvous with an emergency pickup craft, while Macklin follows poor Sarah. First-novelist/actor Boxleitner (the Babylon 5 series, etc.) gives this oft-exploited scenario an organized, crisply delivered, and well-informed workout. Expect sequels.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780441007943
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 1/1/2001
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Edition description: REISSUE
  • Pages: 336
  • Product dimensions: 4.28 (w) x 6.74 (h) x 0.54 (d)

Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 10, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Recommended to all Readers whether or not sci-fi or Western fans

    I am not a fan of science fiction or Western genres. The only reason I chose to read this particular book is because I am a fan of Bruce Boxleitner. And I must admit that I am pleasantly surprised and suitably impressed. I found I just could not put the book down. From the beginning, we are experiencing life in the old west right along with the amnesiac hero Macklin. Dubbed a "greenhorn" by the locals, he doesn't know how to survive in 1881 Arizona any more than we do. This makes his stumblings and confusion for local customs and lingo all the more personal because he makes many of the same mistakes and assumptions that we likely would. Through his innocence and ignorance, we learn to care for Macklin and his quest for the safety of the humans on earth as well as his quest for his own identity.
    I found the writing style both easy to read and well paced. Sprinkled throughout the action were historic facts, sometimes described from the hero's uninformed point of view, hinting to the reader what Macklin was looking at. The fluid descriptions of landscape and people brought vivid and colorful images to my mind. I felt very often that I could see exactly what Mr. Boxleitner was seeing when he wrote the passages.
    All in all, I am very glad I gave this book a chance and I thank Mr. Boxleitner for many hours of dusty and historic enjoyment on the plains of Tombstone Arizona. I purchased the sequel at the same time that I purchased this book and am already halfway through it. These books do not disappoint.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 6, 2002

    Why is this not a movie?

    And the second question that "Frontier Earth" raises is: Did Bruce Boxleitner actually write this book? If he did, as the publishers claim, consider me impressed. "Frontier Earth" explores a wonderful blend of Western and Science Fiction. The "secret" of Macklin, although fairly predictable early on, is nonetheless an interesting character study in a man's quest for identity - a great metaphor for the misfits and trailblazers that actually settled in the American West. The aliens are downright twisted and rather fun to follow at times. Boxleitner's attention to detail in Tombstone, it's characters and how they all weave together in a climactic showdown at the OK Corral is meticulous, but not overly so. The only problem I had with the story is how the events seem to shift too quickly from one person to another. If the story is broken down chronologically, very little plot actually happens. Characters in different places are going somewhere and thinking something and then in the next chapter, a different character is thinking a different thing at the same time but in a different place. The book seemed heavy on character and low on plot. Not necessarily a bad thing, though a better balance would have been helpful. All in all, an impressive debut from Boxleitner and Co. I look forward to reading another installment of the series.

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