Tag Archives: sci-fi

Review of In His Majesty’s Service, by Elizabeth Silver & Jenny Urban

I received a copy of In His Majesty’s Service, by Elizabeth Silver & Jenny Urban through Netgalley.

Description from Goodreads:
Everyone in the Drion Collective knows that finding your match—the one person in existence with the same soul mark as yours—is the best thing that could ever happen. But the last thing Lord Anders Hawthorne is thinking about when he boards a ship to Drion for the king’s funeral is finding his soul mate.

Captain Zachary O’Connell has the perfect life—his ship, the stars, and no emotional entanglements. When heat sparks between him and Lord Hawthorne, Zach gleefully dives into a no-strings arrangement. He doesn’t expect it to last beyond arrival at Drion, any more than he expects trouble along the way.

Trouble quickly finds them, however, and it soon becomes clear that Lord Hawthorne is not only not who he says he is, but also that he’s the target of a deadly plot. With danger all around them, Zach and Anders must work together to save the Collective. Meanwhile, Zach must come to grips with losing everything he always thought he wanted, to have the one thing he never dreamed he needed.

Sooooo, this was not very good. There was WAY too much sex, given the length and amount of plot. It seriously suffered from lack of subtlety or buildup. As an example, the first time the two men met was over a dinner at the captain’s table. The only conversation was about the steak, and it’s barely a conversation. There was no indication that these two men had any interest in each other. Then on the next page, they were jumping into bed and the pet names and ‘this is special’ starts. The whole book was like that. The authors don’t give anything time to develop, just lobbing stuff at the reader out of no where.

Mechanically, the writing is fine, except for some repetition. They seemed to do nothing but rub noses and fall into bed. But the book is just too long. Half of the petty squabbles could have been cut and we’d still understand they were struggling to get to know one another. As could half the sex scenes. They were fairly repetitive anyway, always doing the same things. I just didn’t enjoy it and have no interest in continuing the series.

Review of The Glamour Thieves (Blue Unicorn Book 1), by Don Allmon

I received a copy of Don Allmon’s Glamour Thieves from Netgalley.

Description from Goodreads:
JT is an orc on the way up. He’s got his own boutique robotics shop, high-end clientele, and deep-pocketed investors. He’s even mentoring an orc teen who reminds him a bit too much of himself back in the day. 

Then Austin shows up, and the elf’s got the same hard body and silver tongue as he did two years ago when they used to be friends and might have been more. He’s also got a stolen car to bribe JT to saying yes to one last scheme: stealing the virtual intelligence called Blue Unicorn. 

Soon JT’s up to his tusks in trouble, and it ain’t just zombies and Chinese triads threatening to tear his new life apart. Austin wants a second chance with JT — this time as more than just a friend—and even the Blue Unicorn is trying to play matchmaker.

This I truly enjoyed. My only complaint was that there is a lot of history and I felt like I was reading a second book, instead of a first. It left some important information too vague. Like, why have there only been orcs for a generation and a half? What, exactly, was the Awakening? But beyond that, which admittedly is a big complaint, I loved the characters and the world. I liked the writing style and the author’s voice. And the epilogue tempted me into wanting book 2 right now. So, it’s an all around winner for me.

Review of The Android and the Thief, by Wendy Rathbone

I received a copy of The Android and the Thief from the author, Wendy Rathbone.

Description from Goodreads:
Will love set them free—or seal their fate?

In the sixty-seventh century, Trev, a master thief and computer hacker, and Khim, a vat-grown human android, reluctantly share a cell in a floating space prison called Steering Star. Trev is there as part of an arrangement that might finally free him from his father’s control. Khim, formerly a combat android, snaps when he is sold into the pleasure trade and murders one of the men who sexually assaults him. At first they are at odds, but despite secrets and their dark pasts, they form a pact—first to survive the prison, and then to escape it.

But independence remains elusive, and falling in love comes with its own challenges. Trev’s father, Dante, a powerful underworld figure with sweeping influence throughout the galaxy, maintains control over their lives that seems stronger than any prison security system, and he seeks to keep them apart. Trev and Khim must plan another, more complex escape, and this time make sure they are well beyond the law as well as Dante’s reach. 

I liked but didn’t love this. Mostly because I really think it wanted to be a light fluffy read (and mostly was), but starting with a fairly detailed gang rape killed any real chance of succeeding with this. And I don’t even think showing the rape was necessary. The reader could have known it happened without all the details.

Setting the need for the rape scene aside, I liked both characters. They were each cute and cute as a couple. I can’t say I really felt any real chemistry between them, but I liked them. Beyond liking the characters though, I was iffy on a lot of the book. So many things pulled me out of it.

  • Being set in the far distant future or a galaxy far, far away but people still ordering pizza,  dressing just like we do today and reading Bradbury.
  • The operas and such with names just a little off recognizable contemporary songs. I think it was meant to be cute, but it felt lazy.
  • The questionable idea that anyone could plan and break out of a maximum security space prison, let alone do so easily.
  • The coincidence of so many security setups had the exact same loophole for Trev to exploit.
  • How easily Trev could do anything and everything, bypassing any system in seconds. Somehow even accessing things that shouldn’t be online at all.
  • The ending, where everyone is presumed to live happily ever after, but there is nothing to suggest the bad guy (phrased that way to avoid spoilers) couldn’t find them just as easily as he did the first time.
  • The painful lack of women. Even situations that easily could have women in them were declared “all-male.”
  • The question of how and why Trev was apparenlty the only one in the universe who easily saw androids as human, if he was raised the same way as everyone else. What made him different?
  • Similarly, why was he the only one in his family not to be criminally inlined if he was raised just like the rest of them.
  • The term android, the reader is told repeatedly that android isn’t the correct term for androids, it’s an insult, but we’re never told what the correct term should be.
  • How much of it was written in tell, instead of show.
  • How little happened, considered it’s 294 pages long.

All in all, I’ll say this was a book I don’t regret reading, but I wasn’t blown away by it either. It was ok.