1/01/2010. Contributed by Kelly Jensen
pub: Baen. 384 page paperback. Price: $10.80 (US), £10.79 (UK). ISBN: 978-1-43913-317-0.
check out websites: www.baen.com and www.sarahahoyt.com
A fiesty nineteen year-old, Thena has left a string of burning institutions and baffled professionals in her wake. From boarding schools to psychiatric institutes, Thena seems determined not to fit into Daddy Dearest's plans for her future - which probably entail an arranged marriage and succession to his seat of government.
One night, she awakens to the slightest of sounds and discovers a shadow looming over her bed. With her heightened physical skills, she is able to escape, disabling an impressive number of her father's hired goons with little more than her fists, feet and the heel of a boot, making for an escape pod. She can't be sure what's going on, but it seems as if her father's space cruiser has been hijacked.
Making her escape, Thena directs her pod to the power trees - an organic 'space forest' used to grow pods that supply power to Earth - and encounters something out of myth or legend or perhaps both...a darkship thief.
The plot description given on the cover provides few clues, so there is a sense of expectation as you pick up the book. 'Darkship Thieves' is a lively story that entices the reader from page to page. The action begins on page one and the story paces quickly, introducing characters and facts just at the right moments. Although you can form some guesses early on, most of the puzzle pieces won't fall into place until later in the book. I discovered most along with our main character, Thena, which felt about right.
I enjoyed Thena's developing personality and though she felt a little mature for a nineteen year-old, who is to say what humans of the future will be like, our kids are already learning algebra in the third grade! All characters are well-developed and believable. 'Darkship Thieves' is also an emotionally satisfying read with romance, family dynamics and betrayal all handled deftly. Above all, I enjoyed the story told here. It was exciting and leaves me eager to explore more of Sarah Hoyt's books.
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Stephen Hunt's novels - USA