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The Wrong Stars (Axiom) Mass Market Paperback – November 7, 2017
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“Fun, funny, pacy, thought-provoking and very clever space opera – a breath of fresh air.”
– Sean Williams, author of Twinmaker
PRAISE FOR TIM PRATT
“Pratt shows genuine talent... a writer to watch.”
– Publishers Weekly
“Tim Pratt is in the vanguard of the next generation of master American fantasists.”
– Jay Lake, John W. Campbell Award-winning author of Into the Gardens of Sweet Night
“Exciting and compulsively readable.”
– Romantic Times
“Tim Pratt lures you in with his writing style and penchant for the dramatic and dangerous.”
– British Fantasy Society
“A gifted and imaginative author.”
“If there is any justice at all in this universe, Tim Pratt will someday be as wealthy and famous as Neil Gaiman.”
– The Green Man Review
“His stories have moved me, enchanted me, frightened me… and always leave me wanting more.”
– Terri Windling, World Fantasy Award-winning editor of Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror
About the Author
Tim Pratt is a Hugo Award-winning SF and fantasy author, and has been a finalist for World Fantasy, Sturgeon, Stoker, Mythopoeic, and Nebula Awards, among others. He is the author of over twenty novels, most recently The Deep Woods and Heirs of Grace, and scores of short stories. His work has been reprinted in The Best American Short Stories, The Year's Best Fantasy, The Mammoth Book of Best New Horror, and other nice places. Since 2001 he has worked for Locus, the magazine of the science fiction and fantasy field, where he currently serves as senior editor. He lives in Berkeley, CA with his wife and son.
Top customer reviews
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In general the book was just so much fun to read. Especially everything from the 40% mark on, the pages just seemed to fly by. I don’t want to ruin anything about the plot because it’s full of twists and turns and edge of your seat moments. To give you an idea of where the story starts, Callie, aka Captain Kalea Machedo, runs freelance security contracts for the Trans Neptunian Authority out of her ship the White Raven with her crew, pilots Drake and Janice, Shall the AI, Ashok the engineer, and medical officer Stephen. She stumbles upon some alien tech while salvaging a wrecked ship and chaos ensues.
The characters in this book were so much fun. I especially adored Shall the AI, Lantern the Liar (a species of local aliens) and Ashok the engineer. They all own their roles and feel like distinct, unique personalities. I loved the description of the Liars as a species and thought it was very interesting and creative. These are not your typical aliens.
The weapons and tech were pretty awesome. It included camouflage stealth techniques, wormhole generators, modifiable gravity, magnetic boots, and the list goes on. Some of the science behind these is probably questionable, so if you are looking for actual science in your science fiction you might have come to the wrong place.
I only deducted a star for the romance, which for whatever reason never felt authentic to me, but once we pushed past the beginning stages of flirtation it wasn’t so bad and all the other things to love about action in space took front and center.
I’d recommend this book to anyone who enjoys space operas or heist novels. Thank you to Edelweiss and Angry Robot (Watkins Publishing LTD.) for providing an eARC for me to review.
Although Captain Callie Machedo works for the system's authorities, she also employs crew members who are highly competent but also very unusual. It's given her a bit of a reputation but she doesn't care as long as the job gets done. They come across a true relic - a drifting Goldilocks ship that was sent 500 years ago into deep space with a cryosleep crew to find a new home for a failing Earth. What it is doing in her system is a mystery that is cracked when the only surviving crew member awakens - a very hot and diminutive Elena Oh who instantly captures the captain's eye. As the two work out their lust for each other, the crew and ship have to deal what else they found on Elena's ship - something that could spell disaster for not only the human race but their alien allies as well.
Obviously, I found the whole 'romance' aspect annoying and wish it had been jettisoned. There are a lot of very heavy liberal "love where you want" themes that, while nice, were sledgehammered into the plot. Female readers may want more character interactions but this felt more like a guy checking out a hot chick (the captain spends a lot of time sweating over scenes of Elena's cleavage) than one female interested in another. It was hard not to roll my eyes at the fail here and clearly the future is about physical and not emotional connection between partners.
But that said, the plot was inventive and the side characters very interesting. As with all these type of 'Firefly' confluence of quirky characters, each one has a story to tell as to why they are unusual. And each has no problem telling Elena, our hot little neophyte, the how and why. It was nice to read the backstories but in some instances it was so overtell that you'd think no one understood privacy at all. E.g., an alien species just suddenly giving a VERY thorough and unnecessarily in depth history of their people all to explain one small situation. There was a lot of overtell.
The space and space station battles were fun. Our crew gets to explore new technology, find lots of surprises, and deal with interesting situations. It translated into a lot of action and adventure but the brevity of the scenes did make them fly a bit too fast. Especially at the end, a lot happened but felt glossed over.
In all, despite the reservations above, I have no problem giving this a four star rating as an enjoyable sci fi opera adventure. Reviewed from an advance reader copy provided by the publisher.