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Author: Alistair Reynolds
Rating: 2.5 of 5 Stars
Format: Digital Edition
Adrana and Fura Ness run away from home and join the crew of a spaceship that looks for treasures from older civilizations. They are “Bone Readers”, which allows them to communicate with other Bone Readers on other ships. They’re first mission sees them attacked by the Dread Pirate Bosa Sennen (make sure you said that part like Andre the Giant does in The Princess Bride) and Adrana is captured, Ness hides in the walls of the ship and one other of the crew, Porzor, survives. Fura and Porzor are rescued and Fura, who is under age, is taken back to her ailing father.
Back home Fura is given drugs to keep her docile and fed the story that her sister is dead, not alive and captured. Fura resists, hooks back up with Porzor on another ships and plans how to rescue Adrana and get her revenge on Bosa Sennen.
Fura tricks the crew to get some special armor, makes them a target for Bosa Sennen, kills all the crew on Bosa Sennen’s ship and takes it over. She rescues her sister Adrana, who now believes in the cause that Bosa Sennen was fighting for, and Fura pretty much becomes Bosa Sennen in all but name.
/End Spoiler of Everything
This was not my first book by Reynolds and for that I am intensely grateful. I read Beyond the Aquila Rift just last year in fact. What a great book. So I KNOW at what level Reynolds can write.
Unfortunately, this was deliberately written to be sold in the YA genre and it shows. I’d actually recommend this to a 12-14 year old and once they’d gotten used to Reynold’s name, introduce them to his other stuff when they hit the mid to late teens.
My biggest issue. The slang words used. I am going to just list the ones that I can remember:
- the grey
- the squawky
- the Swirly
- the viewy
There were more,but those stuck out the most. A mature society doesn’t talk like that. A closed, insular society would but that disappears when homogenization takes place. Only teens talk like that, making ordinary things just a little bit different to make it their own. Needless to say, every time I read the word “lungstuff” I was completely thrown out of the book.
My other issue is Fura Ness. She goes from being a naive, tender young thing to a complete bad ass who glows and has a metal hand but she can’t think for crap. She has no plan, she has no tactical training, no fighting training, nothing in fact but the Righteous Anger of her Cause. She is presented as someone as tough as Bosa Sennen by the end of the book, but there is nothing to back that up. Being hard emotionally and having some real anger issues aren’t going to actually do you squat when facing trained professionals. But this being a YA book, it IS enough.
For a review by someone who has read more Reynolds than me [admittedly, not a hard goal to reach], please check out Manuel’s review of Revenger.
Now that I have read this, I’m spurred on to track down Reynolds’ other books so at least this book has that one good point.