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Pod - Stephen Wallenfels Another alien invasion book? Well done! But there’s much more within these pages than just an alien invasion. I know! I wondered about it too; there’s not much you can possibly achieve story-wise if people get zapped by these black ‘Pearls-Of-Destruction’ balls that dot the sky as soon as they step outside, disappearing without a hint whether they’re gone forever--dead--, or...someplace else. Stephen Wallenfels did an alright job at using this concept but sadly, I believe he could’ve tackled darker issues in more intriguing environments and with an even more complex plot.In POD we follow Josh, who when the POD’s (pearls-of-destruction) appear, is trapped in his home with his obsessive, and compulsive, father and his balls-sniffing dog in Washington, surviving only with what they possess. While in L.A., Meg is stuck in a parking garage alone and must utilise whatever she finds to survive; not only to feed and occupy herself, but protect herself from the ‘villains’ that lurk the garage and control the lives of the people in the hotel that the garage is connected to.It was written superbly for the audience it was intended to attract involving two unique characters with dissimilar lives but unfortunately, minimal explanation was given about the presence and purpose of what these aliens, or PODs in Josh’s terms, are really there for. I know I said this about 0.4 by Mike Lancaster, but it felt unreal. Black balls in the sky...pssshhhh! It just seemed like an easy-way out to achieve means end; an analysis into human resourcefulness and how quickly we can adapt when weighed down by certain threats and conditions. I see that none of these characters would not know even one thing about these ‘alien’s’ motifs and must consider why and make their own theories, and yet still I wanted to know which in turn separated me from the story all together.The cover did intrigue me though. Gold and shiny with a big red title. Definitely one for the shelf. However I’d be slightly apprehensive of reading the sequel based on how the lives of each character will fold out when they fear stepping outside. Only time will tell I suppose.