Lesley L. Smith’s A JACK FOR ALL SEASONS tells the story of Jack Jones: thespian, clone, and intergalactic spy of sexiness. Jack lives with his crew and family members aboard a spaceship called Shakespeare, where science fiction and classical literary quotations are lovingly combined. On behalf of the Earth government, the Shakespeare crew takes on missions of espionage, rescue, and general derring-do. They’re the type of intrepid and compassionate crew that can get any job done and make some new alien friends in the process.
In the following wonderfully weird adventures (the third Smith’s Space Operetta series), Jack cavorts and careens about the universe with the grace of a cheerful pinball–a bit bumbling, rather lascivious, but always moving fast and causing a ruckus wherever he goes. It doesn’t matter that he isn’t the brightest or toughest, because his heart, exceptional luck, and sheer momentum carry him through every tight spot he gets himself into. And no one is safe from his irrepressibly flirtatious wiles, be they prison guard, space pirate, or highly evolved energy being. But don’t start imagining a prideful Captain Kirk sort – though his libido rivals that of famously horny sci-fi leads, Jack Jones is ever the perfect gentleman. He is somehow both suave and sweet, an unpretentious romantic and a capable agent of espionage.
For those who have not read the previous books in the series, starting with A JACK FOR ALL SEASONS may be a bit discombobulating at first. It is rather like stepping into a theatre production mid-scene, but the play is so exciting, witty, and enjoyable that it doesn’t matter. Smith’s story does not require flow charts and glossaries to be enjoyable. She doesn’t bog the readers down with excessive names and overly complex social connections, and plot points aren’t so dependent on having read the previous books as to confuse and distress. As long as readers keep an open mind, they can just kick back and enjoy the ride.
Fans of books in the style of Douglas Adams’ The Ultimate Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy will find plenty to love in Smith’s fanciful space saga. Sarcastic talking dogs, magic powers that only work when aroused, stranded humans forced to put on Broadway plays for barbaric alien audiences – there’s something whimsical and eccentric to tickle everyone’s fancy.
A JACK FOR ALL SEASONS is a wacky and charmingly literary science fiction romp that combines sci fi, adventure, and humor in a story that’s consistently lighthearted without being fluffy.
~Lauren Napoli for IndieReader