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November 29, 2023

Robotech: The Macross Saga by Jack McKinney ~ a Review

by MK French

was published originally in 1994, and Titan Books has reprinted it as a single volume. The Macross Saga comprises three books: Genesis, Battle Cry, and Homecoming.

Amazon affiliate links are used on this site. A free book was provided for an honest review.

book cover of science fiction anthology Robotech The Macross Saga by Jack McKinney
October 2023; Titan Books; 978-1803365688
ebook, print (560 pages); science fiction

In Genesis, the Global Civil War raged until the appearance of the Super Dimensional Fortress. It crashed into Macross Island, and a city grew up around it to explore its technology and train a new generation of recruits to pilot the experimental tech. When aliens arrive, it's up to these people to defend the planet.

In Battle Cry, the Super Dimensional Fortress is on its way back to Earth after performing a fold operation that got the aliens away from the planet but damaged the mechanism. New alien forces are dogging their every step.

In Homecoming, the Super Dimensional Fortress has evaded the alien fleet despite the odds stacked against them. They're still making their way home to Earth, but there are more villains determined to destroy the human fleet.

If you have ever seen the original Macross anime, yes, this is the novelization of that series, and it does so faithfully, with more insight into character motivations and background. For those that haven't, Macross in all its forms involves giant mechs piloted by humans, some kind of singing idol, and a love triangle. This universe of anime series is as much human interest stories as they are about battles and awesome giant robots. (Macross Plus and Macross Frontier have the best music!) This novelization really takes me back, and  We know much earlier than the characters do that the aliens are the warlike Zentraedi, are fifty feet tall at a minimum, and do nothing but fight. We also know that they serve another force, which is outlined in the book much earlier than we find out in the anime.

Characters here are exactly as they were presented in the anime, with more insight into their thoughts and why they behave the way they do. I understand Lisa a lot more now and feel kinder toward her. I have to admit, I hate Minmei just as much in the book as I did watching the anime years ago, even with knowing her thought processes. The pilots have their rivalries, friendships, and loyalties, and I fell right back into it as if I were watching the anime again. There's so much more here than in the original anime, which already had more to the story than the altered Robotech series that was shown in the US. If you're a fan of either series, definitely pick this up and read it.

Born and raised in New York City, M.K. French started writing stories when very young, dreaming of different worlds and places to visit. She always had an interest in folklore, fairy tales, and the macabre, which has definitely influenced her work. She currently lives in the Midwest with her husband, three young children, and a golden retriever.

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