This is just what the doctor ordered after reading Caliban’s War.
My biggest gripe with Caliban’s War was that it (almost) completely bypassed the main overarching plot, which, as far as I’m concerned, is where this series truly shines. Well none of that here. I was a little afraid it was going to go the same route, using a petty revenge quest to get the story going, but it turned out that this quest was the catalyst that got the main plot moving again.
In this next instalment, the universe again expands, crossing the borders from the known into the unknown. A lot is kept vague, but there are hints towards bigger things to come. As per usual, it doesn’t take a front seat but is added when needed for the plot to move along.
Apart from our trusty Rocinante crew, we have new POV’s for Carlos ‘Bull’ Baca, security chief of The Behemoth. A grizly but utterly likeable character that does his best to make sure everything runs smoothly. Following his POV I could actually feel his frustration with everything constantly going to shit, and him having to clean up after. Well written character!
We also meet Anna the cleric, who is more of a catalyst character to ensure others change, but here small arc is interesting in its own way.
Lastly there’s Clarissa Mao, who propels the whole ‘petty revenge’ quest in the story. I didn’t really like her throughout the entire thing, but her arc is nevertheless interesting to follow. It’s probably because I couldn’t reconcile such a bright and smart person to be able to blind herself so much to the obvious that she embarks on her foolish quest in the first place.
Just as with the previous installments, the writing is solid, it’s loaded with witty quips that gave me quite a few chuckles. As a whole, everything flows naturally so reading for longer periods is a breeze.
I’m still very much enjoying this series, but given that the main plot finally moved around, I’m going to add another half star from Caliban’s War, so that’s 4.5 stars. I’m still waiting for this series to go from ‘really good’ to ‘frickin’ awesome’, so I’m holding off of the 5 stars for now.