Centuries after the ecological collapse of Earth, humanity has spread among the stars. Under the governance of the League, our endless need for resources has driven us to colonize hundreds of planets, all of them devoid of other sentient life.Read more...
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Centuries after the ecological collapse of Earth, humanity has spread among the stars. Under the governance of the League, our endless need for resources has driven us to colonize hundreds of planets, all of them devoid of other sentient life. Humanity is apparently alone in the universe.
Then comes the sudden, brutal decimation of Kassa, a small farming planet, by a mysterious attacker. The few survivors send out a desperate plea for aid, which is answered by two unlikely rescuers. Prudence Falling is the young captain of a tramp freighter. She and her ragtag crew have been on the run and living job to job for years, eking out a living by making cargo runs that aren't always entirely legal. Lt. Kyle Daspar is a police officer from the wealthy planet of Altair Prime, working undercover as a double agent against the League. He's been undercover so long he can't be trusted by anyone--even himself.
While flying rescue missions to extract survivors from the surface of devastated Kassa, they discover what could be the most important artifact in the history of man: an alien spaceship, crashed and abandoned during the attack.
But something tells them there is more to the story. Together, they discover the cruel truth about the destruction of Kassa, and that an imminent alien invasion is the least of humanity's concerns.
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2012-11-12
- Reviewer: Staff
This fast-moving tale of a freighter captain caught up in a star-spanning conspiracy crosses genres repeatedly, beginning as a space-operatic mystery with noir aspirations and winding up with a romance. Capt. Prudence Falling, looking to unload harvesters on the one colony world with open-air agriculture, finds instead a planet devastated by an unknown enemy. When she stops to help, her ship is commandeered by Lt. Kyle Daspar, police detective and officer of the hated League. Finding evidence of alien contact puts Prudence and Kyle at risk from forces within the League. Separately and together, from capital world Altair to a perpetually dark planet of masked monks, they uncover the reason for the attack and their feelings for each other. RPG tie-in novelist Planck (Sword of the Bright Lady) makes a noble attempt but never quite captures the poetic quirkiness or charms of old-school SF. (Jan.)