Nano Surveillance by Mark Donovan


This story was well-developed as far as the conspiracy thriller plot and technology were concerned. The author clearly knows his stuff about a variety of topics including flying and surveillance technology where the details enhanced the story’s credibility and imagery. While this expands into the realm of science fiction (at least for now) it was believable, which is required of good fiction–even fantasy needs to be believable to work.

The political intrigue was right out of the headlines and well developed as well, but leans heavily toward the conservative, so bear that in mind, too. In other words, if you lean to the left you probably won’t like it, period. The plot is loaded with suspense, kept moving, and would make an excellent action movie.

However, there were a few things that kept it from being great, primarily the desperate need for editing. The story demonstrated imagination and knowledge of technology,  but strong writing skills are necessary to engage the reader. I found the lack of flow made it awkward, even  painful to read. While, to the author’s credit, there were only one or two typos, there was far too much reliance on prepositional phrases. There were also numerous instances of homonym misuse and incorrect punctuation, particularly in the dialog. When the style (or lack thereof) throws the reader out of the story on a regular basis, it’s distracting as well as disappointing.

I want to stress there was nothing grammatically “wrong” with the writing. It simply didn’t employ the complex sentence structure that demonstrates strong writing skills. If it had, this thriller could have been a five-star read; as it stands, I’d give it three stars. In other words, by investing in editorial help or some advanced writing classes, this author could produce an outstanding story, perhaps even a best seller.