Firefly
The first original novel tying into the critically acclaimed and much-missed Firefly series from creator Joss Whedon.The Battle of Serenity Valley was the turning point that led the Independents to their defeat at the hands of the Alliance. Yet the Browncoats had held the valley for weeks against all odds, before being ordered to lay down their arms. Command stated they refused to send in airpower because the ground war was "too hot." But the soldiers who were there insist that was not true...While picking up a new cargo on Persephone, Captain Malcolm Reynolds is kidnapped by a bunch of embittered veteran Browncoats who suspect him of sabotaging the Independents during the war. As the rest of the crew struggle to locate him, Mal is placed on trial for his life, fighting compelling evidence that someone did indeed betray them to the Alliance all those years ago. As old comrades and old rivals crawl out of the woodwork, Mal must prove his innocence, but his captors are desperate and destitute, and will settle for nothing less than the culprit's blood.

Firefly Details

TitleFirefly
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseNov 20th, 2018
PublisherTitan Books
ISBN-139781785658266
Rating
GenreScience Fiction, Fiction, Space, Space Opera

Firefly Review

  • David - proud Gleeman in Branwen's adventuring party
    January 1, 1970
    "You can't take the sky from me."
  • Nina
    January 1, 1970
    I never ever rate books I haven't read, let alone those that haven't been released, but some purple-belly gave this one star and I will not have that, no sir.That said, holy shit! More Firefly? More of the best dysfunctional space family? Yeeeees!!
  • Molly Mortensen
    January 1, 1970
    A new Firefly novel?
  • Pippa DaCosta
    January 1, 1970
    Seriously, that rating? Who one-stars a new Firefly novel?!
  • Kal ★ Reader Voracious
    January 1, 1970
    It's been almost sixteen years since Firefly was cancelled by FOX, and honestly I'm still not over it. As a person that lives in a reality where Serenity does not exist, I was more than eager to dive back into the black with the crew that started my love for space opera and ragtag crews. But I was also apprehensive: would the series hold up? For me this book was everything that I was looking for and I am so excited for the next books in the series!Firefly: Big Damn Hero contextually happens in t It's been almost sixteen years since Firefly was cancelled by FOX, and honestly I'm still not over it. As a person that lives in a reality where Serenity does not exist, I was more than eager to dive back into the black with the crew that started my love for space opera and ragtag crews. But I was also apprehensive: would the series hold up? For me this book was everything that I was looking for and I am so excited for the next books in the series!Firefly: Big Damn Hero contextually happens in the middle of the short lived tv series, which means that some jobs and events from the eleven episodes are referenced, but the great thing is that a reader new to the Firefly franchise will not feel lost among references. Holder and Lovelace did an excellent job of including references for fans of the tv series without alienating an entirely new audience. The plot (re)introduces the reader to the cast and the world, and in my opinion does a good job of recalling the necessary worldbuilding framework to slowly bring you into the world. It didn't read like too much information that I already knew as a fan of the 'verse, which I have to commend the authors on. The witty banter between the characters and the sprinkling of Chinese phrases brought me so much enjoyment and nostalgia! The Serenity crew is on the planet Persephone preparing to take a shipment off-world for Badger, but Mal goes missing during a meeting with a new client. Due to the sensitive nature of Badger's shipment, the crew has to split up between tracking Mal down and delivering the shipment. But don't forget that the Tams are fugitives and the Alliance will stop at nothing to track down River. Mal goes missing on Alliance Day, and it turns out that his kidnappers are Browncoats who feel betrayed by losing the war. I thought this was such an ingenious way to frame the exposition of more history, especially since so much of Mal and Zoe's identity is in the Battle of Serenity and the cause they fought for. Where Serenity provided "closure" following an abrupt cancellation, this book series is going to provide more transport jobs, more answers about our characters, and more worldbuilding. I love the politics of the Alliance and how the world got to a point where the only two superpowers remaining in the world were the US and China... what led them to abandon the Earth-that-was and take to the sky. (This may be fleshed out more in the movie, but I am not joking when I said that I live in a reality where the movie doesn't exist - I watched it once in 2005.) This television series honestly has some of the most loyal fanbases I have ever seen, and I think this book did us browncoats proud. It wasn't perfect, but I am so happy that it exists. As much as I loved the worldbuilding and plotline of the book, I would be remiss to not mention the characters. Mal, Zoe, Jayne, and Shepard Book felt 100% true to the characters that we know and love; however, I do think that Simon, River and Kaylee felt a little off. I am not sure what exactly it was but they didn't sound right to me, but that could be related to them getting less "page time" in this book. I look forward to their characters shining in the next book because it is obvious that the authors can nail the character's voices. As weird as it might sound, I was really happy that Badger is in the book. Mark Sheppard literally was the early 00's actor for so many science fiction shows (Romo Lampkin in Battlestar Galactica, and most notably his long run as Crowley on Supernatural).I think my favorite character of the book has to be Preacher. I loved getting inside of his head and watching him approach the problems at hand, and I am even more intrigued about his past. Of everything that getting back into this world brings, the answers about Book's life before he became a Shepard kind of top my list. I honestly loved the plot of this book, it was such a great way to slowly introduce some backstory on the Battle of Serenity, the politics still at play in relation to the Browncoats vs. the Alliance, and the characters backstories. This was an excellent first-in-series start that feels true to the television show without needing to retcon the movie completely. (Because let's be real, I am not interested in anything post-Serenity, and I will never get over the sudden and inevitable betrayal.) I finished reading this book sixteen minutes before 2018 ended, and it was a great way to finish 2018! Overall, this was a wild ride back into the world of Firefly that I sorely missed; I loved learning some of the backstory that Fox robbed us from fifteen years ago and look forward to the next installment! (Which, speaking of the next installment... The Magnificent Nine comes out in March and Jayne and his hat are on the cover and I am ALL ABOUT THE HERO OF CANTON & HIS STATEMENT MAKING HAT.)~~10/30/2018: tfw you want a book so badly that you accidentally pre-order it twiceBlog | Twitter | Pinterest!
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  • Hollis
    January 1, 1970
    Some of this really did feel like true blue Firefly, fully equipped with Whedon banter and turn of phrase and characterization, but so much of it was.. dull. Slow. And the ending was so predictable it pained me.The only upside is that I think I'll be bingeing the show over the holidays. I am now super nostalgic.
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  • Katie.dorny
    January 1, 1970
    This would have been a 4 star read if it wasn’t for that phoned in and so so typical ending.The beginning got off to a slow start, meeting up with Captain Mal again but as the plot developed I was intrigued.Unfortunately, once we meet his past love interest things just follow the can’t be bothered book ending in so many books that just choose to cash in on a franchise.Zoe was dope, so was Mr Preacher Man.There was wittiness in the dialogue which I enjoyed, but the last quarter of the book just d This would have been a 4 star read if it wasn’t for that phoned in and so so typical ending.The beginning got off to a slow start, meeting up with Captain Mal again but as the plot developed I was intrigued.Unfortunately, once we meet his past love interest things just follow the can’t be bothered book ending in so many books that just choose to cash in on a franchise.Zoe was dope, so was Mr Preacher Man.There was wittiness in the dialogue which I enjoyed, but the last quarter of the book just disappointed me after all the effort the author put into the first half of the book and developing that plot with all the little twists and turns and other characters.
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  • Silvana
    January 1, 1970
    Well, we no longer need to find a Firefly-like novels or series, do we? We have it already! The real deal, in fact, not some sorry copycats. 3.5 stars rounded up. I still have a few issues: some of the plot devices and the dialogue from Wash (should be funnier) but the gorram book is still shiny.We have multiples POVs; while not all of them clicked yet (in my own head canon), some are truly enjoyable: Book and Jayne especially. I had so much fun with Mal and the rest of crew and cannot wait to h Well, we no longer need to find a Firefly-like novels or series, do we? We have it already! The real deal, in fact, not some sorry copycats. 3.5 stars rounded up. I still have a few issues: some of the plot devices and the dialogue from Wash (should be funnier) but the gorram book is still shiny.We have multiples POVs; while not all of them clicked yet (in my own head canon), some are truly enjoyable: Book and Jayne especially. I had so much fun with Mal and the rest of crew and cannot wait to have another adventure in the next book, which will focus on our very own hero of Canton.
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  • Rea K
    January 1, 1970
    Now the question for me is this: Are these going to be hit and miss like the Torchwood and Doctor Who books (Yeah, I read a couple of the Torchwood books. So sue me. I have a deep adoration for Ianto Jones and Jack Harkness) or national treasures that capture the essence of the original series? (Oh, stop. I know how Serenity ended. In ugly sobbing and a month of 'what do I do now?' Don't remind me. I know we can't reverse some probably executive decisions, but I do hope we can deepen the River s Now the question for me is this: Are these going to be hit and miss like the Torchwood and Doctor Who books (Yeah, I read a couple of the Torchwood books. So sue me. I have a deep adoration for Ianto Jones and Jack Harkness) or national treasures that capture the essence of the original series? (Oh, stop. I know how Serenity ended. In ugly sobbing and a month of 'what do I do now?' Don't remind me. I know we can't reverse some probably executive decisions, but I do hope we can deepen the River storyline AND THE GLORIOUS SHIPS.) Time will tell. And I'll probably read this in six years, at my current going rate for books. I'll revisit this review when I finally manage to snag a copy and see whether my hopes and dreams have been crushed or raised.
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  • Holly (The Grimdragon)
    January 1, 1970
    "Is it a good life or a bad one? The answer doesn't matter. It's the only life we have."Oh, my fractured Browncoat heart.How long have I been saying there should be full-length Firefly books?! SO GORRAMN LONG!!To say this first tie-in Firefly novel was long-awaited by the fandom would be an incredible understatement. Serenity came out in 2005, people! TWO THOUSAND AND FIVE!!!The fact we finally FINALLY have Firefly novels (the next one is set for a March release) makes me so happy. But also sad. "Is it a good life or a bad one? The answer doesn't matter. It's the only life we have."Oh, my fractured Browncoat heart.How long have I been saying there should be full-length Firefly books?! SO GORRAMN LONG!!To say this first tie-in Firefly novel was long-awaited by the fandom would be an incredible understatement. Serenity came out in 2005, people! TWO THOUSAND AND FIVE!!!The fact we finally FINALLY have Firefly novels (the next one is set for a March release) makes me so happy. But also sad. Because Firefly.Firefly just.. it means everything to me. It didn't last as long as it should have, but it goes to show what an all-encompassing franchise it is. It lasted one season. ONE!! With a follow-up movie and a bunch of comics. The impact it has had on people.. Browncoats are some of the most die-hard fans. Firefly was never truly over for us.I'm sure writing a Firefly novel is similar to writing a Star Wars novel. The pressure to respect the source material, to nail the voices of well-established characters, to honor the fans that have waited for this moment. Fucking hell. In fact, it's probably harder than writing a Star Wars novel because it's THE FIRST OF IT'S KIND!! Talk about intimidation!Big Damn Hero takes place in the midst of the original Firefly, during a time when everyone was alive. It could fit as an extended filmed episode, almost like a new adventure in that season two that we weren't given.The crew are chasing up a job with the crime lord Badger, one that involves a cargo of explosives that they must deliver. Except Mal being Mal, ends up getting kidnapped while on a side job. Mal's second in command of the good ship Serenity, Zoë, must decide between going through with the deal or heading on a rescue mission to find her Captain.We get to see inside Mal's mysterious past while he is away from the main storyline. I loved these flashbacks to younger Mal! We are given more than just passing glimpses into what formed him as the Captain of today. Fans of the show know there is more to him than what meets the eye and this does an excellent job showing that. What has caused him some of the hurt in his life. Like a past love. OOF.Lovegrove reproduced the voices of these characters, capturing their essence that we already know and love. There is certainly a sense of familiarity here. All of them getting a moment to shine. However, I did have a few issues with the dialogue. At times it felt a bit choppy and Jayne's character in particular seemed a little off. That could be just that it's such a hard character to do justice.. no one could do it in the way that Adam Baldwin does!There were also a few niggling items of repeating the same moment or action. For instance, within the first 100 pages, I believe I counted three iterations of "the hairs on the back of the neck stood on end." Otherwise, this was a bloody treat to read! The pacing was perfect for fans of the television series, there was a proper story and ultimately, it was nostalgic as fuck. I dug this a lot!It will be interesting to see how the other two books get on, once the focus shifts from OMG FINALLY A FIREFLY NOVEL!! I personally loved the Serenity: Leaves on the Wind run of comics, which I feel added much-needed story for our beloved ragtag crew. It wrapped up some questions by giving us a look into the lives of these people we have grown to know so well. How they are managing after the traumatic events in the movie. So I'm not sure if someone will tackle the post-Serenity events in a full-length novel, because Zack Whedon did a helluva job in the comics. There is always potential for an ongoing series, though. Always.Whatever happens, I am just so fucking happy to be back in the 'Verse with the crew of Serenity. I will always hold out hope that we will get that reboot we all want and deserve on screen, but for now stories like these will do just fine.
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  • Magali
    January 1, 1970
    It was really good at the beginning. Well it had to, it was a Firefly novel. As a Browncoat, I'm always searching for new Firefly content, and official novel was the big dream (well, a dream, because the big dream is the TRILOGY obviously). Also, I liked the pitch : Mal is kidnapped, the crew tries to find him while he has to fight against something from his past, also there are crates full of a chemical that could go KABOOM at any moment in Serenity's hold. It would make a great episode !And it It was really good at the beginning. Well it had to, it was a Firefly novel. As a Browncoat, I'm always searching for new Firefly content, and official novel was the big dream (well, a dream, because the big dream is the TRILOGY obviously). Also, I liked the pitch : Mal is kidnapped, the crew tries to find him while he has to fight against something from his past, also there are crates full of a chemical that could go KABOOM at any moment in Serenity's hold. It would make a great episode !And it was not bad, the novel, in the end. But in most areas, it was a kind of a hit and miss thing. The story had some good moments, but also very boring ones. The whole past coming to haunt Mal drama was a big miss for me, I felt it was very [i]cliché[/i], very boring and also a little bit hard to believe it was actually from Mal's past. I like how Mal was kidnapped, I liked who kidnapped him and what happened to him, I just didn't like the why of it all, it felt like a bad fanfiction. I like the part of the story with Shepherd Book, I felt it was really good, and I felt his characterization was on the spot. I also felt River was pretty well written, Kaylee too, eventhough she had kind of a secondary part in the book, same for Inara. Wash was kinda funny but also not very important... Badger was fun to see.Then there was Jayne. I LOVE Jayne. I basically adore that character, mostly because I feel it's one of the few dumb characters that are well done in fiction. I also like his amorality. And I was happy he was very present, particularly in the first third of the book. And he had great moments, but he had some bad moments too. Basically sometimes it felt like less Jayne would have been better Jayne. For the first time ever he annoyed me at time (particularly the author's way of making him saying Mal must be dead every five minutes. I mean, yeah, Jayne is a brute but he also has pretty good survival skills and wouldn't goat Zoë in wanting to kill him that much. Also, he is not exactly a mean person and that's how he felt at times.).And Zoë, she was kinda meh to me honestly. She lacked a little depth in my opinion. She also was a little too rigid. I had issues with Mal too. He felt a little out of character most of the book to be honest.The dialogues were either great, either bad. And the author had that thing were EVERY bad guy had to be ugly in one way or another and I hate that trope. Like scars, "hatchet face", being fat (that seems to be a bad thing in the author's opinion)... I mean, ugh, you don't need to be that much on the nose about everything ! Beautiful people, ordinary people can be bad guys too. I really felt again like in a bad fanfiction with that. "Oh that guy has scars, he is really bad", "that woman is ugly, she is a villain" and of course "that beautiful woman is the victim of the story". Ugh.Honestly, if I had not been so desperate for anything browncoatish going my way, I would probably not have finished the novel. But I still can say it had fun moments and on some occasions I even felt the nostalgia of that amazing show.... (That was very clever to put the action before the Serenity movie, made it easier to follow, but I really want a good author to write about the crew after the events of Serenity, that would be amazing.)
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  • Meital
    January 1, 1970
    There's no place, I can be, Since I've found Serenity.
  • Holly
    January 1, 1970
    If you are a firefly fan I highly recommend this book!
  • Stephen
    January 1, 1970
    "Well, look-at-this! Seems we got here just in the nick of time. What does that make us?""Big damn heroes, sir.""Ain't we just?"I am a patient miser who almost never buys books new, preferring to wait until used copies hit the market. But when I learned that there was a Firefly novel scheduled for release, I preordered and didn't blink. Set during the run of the show, Big Damn Hero delivers as close as we'll get to another episode of the shiniest show that ever ran. At its opening, Mal Reynolds "Well, look-at-this! Seems we got here just in the nick of time. What does that make us?""Big damn heroes, sir.""Ain't we just?"I am a patient miser who almost never buys books new, preferring to wait until used copies hit the market. But when I learned that there was a Firefly novel scheduled for release, I preordered and didn't blink. Set during the run of the show, Big Damn Hero delivers as close as we'll get to another episode of the shiniest show that ever ran. At its opening, Mal Reynolds and the good ship Serenity are looking for work, trying to recover their reputation after the Niska disaster, and necessity compels them to take a questionable payload of explosives from the even-more questionable person of Badger. Mal's been asked to see a local businessman about a smaller delivery he can handle on the way, but something goes awry: emerging from an epic bar fight, Zoe and Jayne quickly realized the captain's been kidnapped. With destabilizing explosives in the hold, and Mal in the hands of parties unknown, Zoe and the whole Serenity gang have to work double time to figure out what's gone awry before matters get worse. Big Damn Hero offers a fast-moving plot (a two-day story) and all the flavor of the show that Browncoats should enjoy; Lovegrove and Holder have a good ear for the show's peculiar mix of frontier drawls peppered with Chinese expressions, and none of the characters from the ship are overlooked in contributing to the resolution: it's very much an all-hands on deck kind of story, bringing even Book and Inara into the thick of things. The show's humor runs throughout, from Mal's verbal harrying of his captors, to Zoe and Wash's playful banter and Jayne's mix of wiles and tactlessness. River is...well, River, playing a flute to calm the explosives down and providing just the right amount of insight to get the team out of tight corners. There are plenty, too; with so many members of the crew separated in the search for answers. Zoe, never a weak character -- never -- is in fine form here, hobbling round town on a fractured leg, keeping the crew focused despite River's episodes and Jayne's fits and Kaylee's near panic at the idea of leaving the captain behind. The only fly in the ointment is the questionable backstory about the Alliance and the Independents, as the settling of this system is portrayed simplistically with rich people buying the core planets and leaving the poor people to the frontier planets, and then there being some confusion about the independents "seceding" from the Union...which they were not part of to begin with. That's relatively minor, though, perhaps on the scale of arguing about Klingon head makeup. Big Damn Hero will find an audience, I think, not just because it's a new story in a beloved franchise, but because it also adds to that Firefly universe by fleshing out Mal's past and the people he loved and fought by. I enjoyed it thoroughly and hope this series keeps flying.
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  • Mick
    January 1, 1970
    ”Curse your sudden, but inevitable betrayal” All Firefly fans will probably remember this quote from the show, and I currently feel just like Wash’s plant-eating dinosaur must have felt, when it was betrayed by a meat-eating dinosaur.Yes! It was a tie-in novel, and I have read my share of bad tie-in novels in the past, so I had my fears about Big Damn Hero being released more for the sake of profit than for the sake of its’ captivating story, but when I saw the production value of the book – the ”Curse your sudden, but inevitable betrayal” All Firefly fans will probably remember this quote from the show, and I currently feel just like Wash’s plant-eating dinosaur must have felt, when it was betrayed by a meat-eating dinosaur.Yes! It was a tie-in novel, and I have read my share of bad tie-in novels in the past, so I had my fears about Big Damn Hero being released more for the sake of profit than for the sake of its’ captivating story, but when I saw the production value of the book – the hardback and dust-jacket treatment – and that Joss Whedon was credited as “consulting editor” (whatever that means) – I got my hopes up.”我的媽和她的瘋狂的外甥都” (Holy Mother of God and All Her Wacky Nephews) I felt like a sucker, when I finished this slow-paced book, after not being entertained at all throughout its’ duration. The characters mostly feel like cardboard-copies of themselves, while Jayne does have a personality for some of the book, Mal, Zoë and Book (who are the main characters in this book) all seem to have undergone personality-removals. They may be going through the motions, I just didn’t have any emotional connection with any of them, and the plot is both slow and clichéd, and every third chapter or so had a reference to one of the show's episodes, which does not contribute to the story at all.I am done with this book series, due to this being the worst book that I have read in 2018.
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  • Christina
    January 1, 1970
    As a huge fan of the show, I wanted to love this book. However, the magic of Firefly remains elusive. I caught glimpses here and there, enough to warrant 3 stars, but it is far from recaptured.
  • Kathleen
    January 1, 1970
    I'm a Firefly fan and was interested when I heard of these novels (yes, another due out in early 2019). Will say that the vocabulary and timbre of the character is well done. The plot lines don't introduce anything *too* new but for the delving into Mal's pre-war past.Some of the memories dragged on a bit, but I have read much worse so no more whinging about it.Not sure if anyone who hasn't watched the (criminally short) series will enjoy it, certainly not AS much. I will recommend it and look f I'm a Firefly fan and was interested when I heard of these novels (yes, another due out in early 2019). Will say that the vocabulary and timbre of the character is well done. The plot lines don't introduce anything *too* new but for the delving into Mal's pre-war past.Some of the memories dragged on a bit, but I have read much worse so no more whinging about it.Not sure if anyone who hasn't watched the (criminally short) series will enjoy it, certainly not AS much. I will recommend it and look forward to more.
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  • Maddy Barone
    January 1, 1970
    4.5 stars.Well written. The authors obviously are thoroughly acquainted with the world ('Verse) and the characters. I was afraid Mal, Zoe, and the rest would not be themselves, but caricatures. Thankfully, all the characters behave the way they would have in the TV series. The dialogue is spot on. My favorite thing? Learning more about Shepherd Book's history. We get some precious nuggets about why the Alliance has shown him deference in the past. We learn more about Mal's childhood and young ad 4.5 stars.Well written. The authors obviously are thoroughly acquainted with the world ('Verse) and the characters. I was afraid Mal, Zoe, and the rest would not be themselves, but caricatures. Thankfully, all the characters behave the way they would have in the TV series. The dialogue is spot on. My favorite thing? Learning more about Shepherd Book's history. We get some precious nuggets about why the Alliance has shown him deference in the past. We learn more about Mal's childhood and young adulthood too.The only things that bugged me a little were all the references to past characters and past exploits. Niska, the train job, YoSaffBridge, and the Jayne Hat are all dearly loved, but it felt a little heavy handed at times. However, those might be the exact things others adore in this book. Either way, the book was great. It was almost like watching a new long lost episode of Firefly and I look forward to more.
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  • Dave Packard
    January 1, 1970
    Back in the ‘verse! Got some back story on Mal, and a great new adventure. Probably best read with some idea what Firefly is, but I do, so for me it was 5 stars all the way!
  • Curtis McIntyre
    January 1, 1970
    This might be enjoyable for younger readers, but the YA style was off-putting to me as someone who watched the show when it aired and has since aged into adulthood. Felt like I was back in high-school reading so-so fanfic.
  • Margaret
    January 1, 1970
    On the book jacket (AND the title page), it says Big Damn Hero Firefly by James Lovegrove. Original story concept by Nancy Holder. In the acknowledgments section at the back of the book, Lovegrove thanks Holder for "letting me pick up her ball and run with it". The next page About the Authors gives a short bio for both Ms. Holder and Mr. Lovegrove. I had assumed that this Big Damn Hero book would be a prequel to the Firefly TV show. In fact, it picks up during the "eleven of the fourteen produce On the book jacket (AND the title page), it says Big Damn Hero Firefly by James Lovegrove. Original story concept by Nancy Holder. In the acknowledgments section at the back of the book, Lovegrove thanks Holder for "letting me pick up her ball and run with it". The next page About the Authors gives a short bio for both Ms. Holder and Mr. Lovegrove. I had assumed that this Big Damn Hero book would be a prequel to the Firefly TV show. In fact, it picks up during the "eleven of the fourteen produced episodes [that] were aired" (Wikipedia). Thus, all nine of the Firefly crew main characters are present in this new novel series. (I definitely approve of this approach as I was one of the fans very disappointed that two crew were killed off in the Serenity Firefly movie.)I had also assumed that, with both Mal and Zoe on the book jacket, the Big Damn Hero novel would mostly be about that final battle in Serenity Valley where the Browncoats were eventually ordered to surrender (and thus lost the war to the Alliance). References to that battle are indeed included but I really liked getting Mal's backstory on Shadow, the planet where he grew up and also some backstory on Shepherd Book. Again, new fans might enjoy this book but dedicated Firefly fans will enjoy it the most because they will know why River & Simon Tam are on the run from the Alliance and, in general, how the Serenity cargo ship is run by Captain Mal Reynolds, etc. etc. The second book in this new authorized Firefly novel series is The Magnificent Nine by James Lovegrove, scheduled to be published in March 2019. However, the third book is listed as Generations by Tim Lebbon, set for October 2019. (This is not entirely surprising as most Star Wars and Star Trek books are by many different authors [this seems to be the pattern for sf TV/movie tie-in books].) In short, highly recommended for all Firefly fans and the best news is that more authorized novel tie-ins are on the way as well!
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  • Tammy
    January 1, 1970
    I received this book for free from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.The nitty-gritty: An outstanding tie-in to the beloved TV series, this book is shiny in every way possible. “I have a problem with authority,” Mal said, “not least when said authority is a big, fat, corrupt lawman with poor personal hygiene and a face that’d give a moose nightmares.” Bundy strode down the front steps and sauntered over to Mal, I received this book for free from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.The nitty-gritty: An outstanding tie-in to the beloved TV series, this book is shiny in every way possible. “I have a problem with authority,” Mal said, “not least when said authority is a big, fat, corrupt lawman with poor personal hygiene and a face that’d give a moose nightmares.” Bundy strode down the front steps and sauntered over to Mal, thrusting his face up close. “Say that again, boy,” he growled. “Did I mention bad breath too?” Mal said. “Because seriously, Sheriff, would it kill you to try a mint every once in a while?” This book set my Firefly -loving heart aflutter! I had so much fun with this first installment in what I hope turns out to be a long series set in one of Joss Whedon’s best franchises. For those of you who aren’t in the know, Firefly only lasted for eleven episodes before being yanked from Fox network due to lack of popularity, but it ended up with a huge fan base on DVD, and best of all, it gave us the incomparable Nathan Fillion. Fans of the TV show will be very happy with James Lovegrove’s foray into the world of Firefly . I was thrilled at how authentic most of the characters’ dialog sounded, and indeed, I gleefully read the book with the voices of Nathan Fillion, Gina Torres, Adam Baldwin, Ron Glass and the others playing out in my head. Lovegrove jumps right into the story with very little explanation on the background of the world, so readers who aren’t familiar with the show will probably not enjoy this as much as I did.The story starts out on the planet Persephone, where Mal and his crew have decided to take on a couple of transport jobs. One of them appears fairly easy, but when they find out they will be transporting some highly dangerous explosives, the crew wants nothing more than to finish up the job as quickly as possible and get the explosives off the ship. But Mal’s caught wind of another job, and as the crew are hard pressed for coin, he decides to check it out. He, Zoë and Jayne head to a sketchy tavern called Taggart's to meet Hunter Covington, but it turns out it’s all a set-up, and Mal is snatched from under Zoë’s and Jayne’s noses. Someone from Mal’s past has a grudge to settle, and it doesn’t look good for Mal.As Zoë and Jayne start searching for their missing Captain, and Shepherd Book dives into his own investigation, Mal has been manhandled onto a shuttle, headed off to who-knows-where.  Meanwhile back on Serenity, Wash gets wind of an Alliance ship headed their way, which can only mean one thing: they are probably looking for fugitives River and Simon Tam, who have been hiding from the Alliance on board Serenity. Add in the fact that the explosives they're carrying are starting to heat up, and you've got a recipe for disaster.The story bounces around from character to character, so we get into everyone’s head at some point, which was a lot of fun. I absolutely loved reading about Mal, who has always been my favorite character in the series. He’s such a cool customer, and even as he’s being kidnapped and roughed up, he uses his particular brand of wit and charm to stay focused while he tries to figure out what the hell is going on. Lovegrove uses the backstory of the war between the Alliance and the Browncoats to build on his plot, which worked really well. The other characters made me smile too. River is suitably nuts (I won’t go into her backstory, but fans will understand!), Zoe is totally kickass, Jayne is still a bumbling but dangerous hick with a trigger finger, and Wash still has his dinosaur collection set up in the cockpit of the ship. Lovegrove even throws in Chinese phrases just like in the TV show, which is one of the elements that makes this world so unique.Although most of the characters’ voices were spot-on, I did have some issues with a couple of them. Now, you have to understand that I have watched Firefly at least twenty times, and I am a HUGE fun of the show. So I know each character inside and out. When I say a particular character’s dialog didn’t feel completely right to me, it’s because I’m comparing it to the character on the TV show, and I know how it should sound. I guess what I’m trying to say is that I am extremely picky! In particular, I had some issues with River, Kaylee and Simon. And the reason for that is most likely that they aren’t in the story much, so they don’t really get a chance to shine. Kaylee was everyone’s sweetheart on the show, friendly, upbeat and as sweet and loyal as she could be, but I felt like her dialog was almost too sweet and innocent. Likewise, the dialog of brother and sister fugitives Simon and River Tam didn’t feel quite right to me, and their side story about the Alliance looking for them almost felt tacked on, as though the author needed to throw that bit of information in even though it has nothing to do with the plot. But Lovegrove nails the voices of Mal, Zoë, Jayne and Book. He also does a bang-up job with pacing. There is a lot going on in this story, and with a large cast of nine main characters and lots of secondary ones, Lovegrove has his job cut out for him, keeping everything straight and weaving together all the different parts and pieces of the story. The main event—Mal being kidnapped and the crew of Serenity trying to find and save him before it’s too late—is interspersed with other side stories that all lead up to finding Mal. Because Mal is taken in the beginning of the story, I thought the author did a great job ramping up the tension. The novel format is much different from a 42 minute television show, since Lovegrove had the luxury of more time to develop his story, and yet the construction of Big Damn Hero felt very cinematic indeed.One advantage to a novel-length story is that the author is able to go into more depth with his characters’ backstories. I was especially thrilled to learn more about Mal’s early, teenage years. We're introduced to teen Mal and his friends, who called themselves the Four Amigos, and the events that led up to Mal’s kidnapping. These flashbacks are scattered throughout the story and really added to my overall enjoyment. We also learn a little more about Shepherd Book (a Shepherd is like a priest in this world) and his mysterious past. Whedon always hinted that there’s much more to Book than meets the eye, but he never really dug deep into his life. I’m hoping this series will go even further with this in future installments.Overall, this book was a fantastic trip down memory lane, and it has not only made me anxious to read the next book in the series (coming out in March!), but it’s made me realize it’s time for another Firefly binge-watch! Fans, rejoice! And get a copy of this book as soon as you can.Big thanks to the publisher for supplying a review copy.This review originally appeared on Books, Bones & Buffy
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  • Emma
    January 1, 1970
    Wenn nach all den Jahren plötzlich einen Roman namens "Firefly" erscheint und man auf dem Cover trotz des Zeichenstils sofort Mal und Zoe erkennt, stellt sich sofort die Frage: Fanservice?Ist es das? - Ja.Ist das schlimm? - Nein. Und ja.Ich habe es geliebt, auf die Serenity zurückzukehren und wieder Zeit mit den geliebten Charakteren zu verbringen. Ein neues Abenteuer mit Mal, Zoe, Wash, Kaylee, Jayne, Inara, Book, River und Simon zu erleben. Mehr über sie zu erfahren (hier vor allem über Mal), Wenn nach all den Jahren plötzlich einen Roman namens "Firefly" erscheint und man auf dem Cover trotz des Zeichenstils sofort Mal und Zoe erkennt, stellt sich sofort die Frage: Fanservice?Ist es das? - Ja.Ist das schlimm? - Nein. Und ja.Ich habe es geliebt, auf die Serenity zurückzukehren und wieder Zeit mit den geliebten Charakteren zu verbringen. Ein neues Abenteuer mit Mal, Zoe, Wash, Kaylee, Jayne, Inara, Book, River und Simon zu erleben. Mehr über sie zu erfahren (hier vor allem über Mal), ihnen bei einem unmöglichen Auftrag zuzusehen und wie sie sich am Rand des Universums behaupten. Das Buch bedient sich einer sehr bildlichen Sprache, so dass man mühelos in alte Serienzeiten eintauchen kann und die Protagonisten sofort vor Augen sieht. Noch dazu haben alle Hauptcharaktere der Serie auch ihre eigenen POV-Kapitel, die alle ihre Einzigartigkeiten unterstreichen. River ist River, Simon macht sich Sorgen, Kaylee ist süß, Mal vollkommen ausgebufft und Jayne ein wenig langsam. Man erfährt viele liebenswerte Kleinigkeiten über sie, während sie ihr Abenteuer erleben, bei dem auch Badger eine Rolle spielt und Mals Kindheit und Jugend auf Shadow in Rückblenden thematisiert wird.Davon abgesehen gibt es natürlich den Fall der "Folge". Sie erhalten einen gefährlichen Lieferauftrag von Badger. Und Mal verschwindet. Die Suche nach ihm, während sie zeitgleich die gefährliche Ladung an Bord der Serenity haben und die Allianz natürlich immer noch nach River und Simon sucht (sind sich jetzt eigentlich alle einig, dass der Film nie existiert hat oder wie?), ist der Hauptplot. Und irgendwie geriet der für mich häufig in den Hintergrund oder zog sich. Ich habe stellenweise wirklich mit der Motivation gehadert, weiterzulesen. So viele Details müssen noch gesammelt werden, damit klar ist, was mit Mal passiert ist und wie sie ihn finden können. Jeder Charakter muss eine kleine Rolle spielen, um das Puzzle zu ergänzen. Das zog sich im Mittelteil und leider auch ganz zum Ende hin enorm.Deswegen vergebe ich dem Buch insgesamt nur 3,5 Sterne, durch meinen enormen Fanstatus aufgerundet. Und unabhängig davon werde ich natürlich auch den nächsten Band lesen. Und den danach. Da ist River auf dem Cover, da bin ich besonders gespannt drauf.
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  • Diane ~Firefly~
    January 1, 1970
    I LOVE Firefly, so I was thrilled when I heard there would be novels. I was even more excited when I started and realized it was set before the movie (which I love as well). This had some great things and not so great things.What I enjoyed:* backstory on Mal even if it wasn't anything like I expected* backstory on Book, which was more like I expected* Mal and Book shone in this story. Zoe had a big part, but didn't seem as in character.* Jayne is always good for some comic relief and violenceWha I LOVE Firefly, so I was thrilled when I heard there would be novels. I was even more excited when I started and realized it was set before the movie (which I love as well). This had some great things and not so great things.What I enjoyed:* backstory on Mal even if it wasn't anything like I expected* backstory on Book, which was more like I expected* Mal and Book shone in this story. Zoe had a big part, but didn't seem as in character.* Jayne is always good for some comic relief and violenceWhat could have been better: * Other characters didn't fair so well. Kaylee might as well have been absent. The few times she showed up she was just wringing her hands. Simon was as clueless as the first episode instead of where he was at the last one. Inara, River and Wash were barely around as well, although more in character.* (view spoiler)[They failed another job (and blew up a lot of people) and seemed ok with both with no repercussions. (hide spoiler)]
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  • Geonn Cannon
    January 1, 1970
    Classic Firefly! I found myself wishing toward the beginning that Inara had more to do, since it seemed like she was being reduced to the resident taxi driver, but there really wasn't much call for her to do anything else (a problem when you have so many characters). I appreciated a deeper dive into Book's character, and Mal's backstory got fleshed out nicely in a way that made sense for who he would become.An excellent Firefly story, and a great addition to the canon.
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  • Ashley
    January 1, 1970
    Serenity, oh how I've missed you!
  • Herman
    January 1, 1970
    To answer the first question I had when I found out about this book, it is after the series but before Serenity. I thought the characterization were spot on. There are some slow spots but it’s not so bad when you’re spending time with characters you’ve missed. I am hoping that the forthcoming novels will continue to build on the verse and build some forward momentum.
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  • WyrmbergSabrina
    January 1, 1970
    Like reading an episode. If you are a fan, you'll love this.Filled with the usual shenanigans, bad luck and Mal getting punched a lot! There's history, references to our leads past and loads of wonderful character moments.I loved it.
  • Tearshiani Glass
    January 1, 1970
    I promised to update when I finished. Well I just finished and I wish I wasn't 💔. Wow what a gorram great story, but I'm devastated that I reached the end and it feels like the end of the show all over again. *sigh* but if you love Firefly you'll love this story 💙
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  • Kerry Nietz
    January 1, 1970
    Fans of Firefly will doubtless find “Big Damn Hero” a brisk read like it was for me. It was great fun to stomp around in the ‘verse again. Felt like it was just another episode in the series. I think the author did a great job of recreating the personalities and scenarios. Some of the characters got more use than others—for instance, Mal and Zoe had large roles, while Inara and Simon were barely utilized—but that’s typical for a single TV episode too. I anticipate that other characters will get Fans of Firefly will doubtless find “Big Damn Hero” a brisk read like it was for me. It was great fun to stomp around in the ‘verse again. Felt like it was just another episode in the series. I think the author did a great job of recreating the personalities and scenarios. Some of the characters got more use than others—for instance, Mal and Zoe had large roles, while Inara and Simon were barely utilized—but that’s typical for a single TV episode too. I anticipate that other characters will get larger roles in the books to come. (And there are at least two more coming. Yay!) “Big Damn Heroes” also helped to flush out a little of the Unification War backstory, and even gave meaning to some of the props seen in the series. All in all, a great effort. I look forward to more!
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