by Alan Whichello
Trafford Publishing

"The End or is it just the Beginning?"

Billy Boswell is a normal English lad in Oxford, England—suburban home on the outskirts of town, paper route with his best friend, Frank Jenkins, low achiever in school—whose one true passion is astronomy. Other than his wild crush on Susan, a classmate, Billy has a pretty peaceful existence. Until the meteorite. Billy and Frank witness the fall of the meteorite and sneak out of Billy's house to find it. When they do, they break off a chunk and take it back to Billy's—only there's an insect-like worm attached to the rock. When Billy finds the worm, he befriends it, names it Kayak, and keeps it as a pet. But it turns out that not only is Kayak telepathic, he can regenerate by splitting in half. For some reason, Kayak's diet of tinned cat food has sped up the regeneration process, and he regenerates once about every eight weeks instead of the usual once a year.

Unbeknownst to Billy, the local police, along with Billy's professor, have taken an interest in him. They aren't as accommodating as Billy with having mutant aliens on their planet. Turns out they're right to be concerned; Kayak's offspring aren't nearly as friendly as Kayak himself. (It is Kayak who discovers the deadly cause of Frank's frequent headaches.) Kayak's offspring? They're just hungry.

Due to its fast pace, Kayak is a short work, but on the whole, the pace benefits the story. Whichello leaves out most extraneous detail, yet he still manages to include Billy's budding romance and a revenge-seeking drug addict. There's a bit of a leap between Billy's story ending at the age of 14 and the climax. While this ratchets up the tension, Whichello's attention turns to the Professor rather unexpectedly in setting up the sequel.

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