In the almost two centuries since the discovery of the first inter-universal portal, Arcana has explored scores of other worlds . . . all of them duplicates of their own. Multiple Earths, virgin planets with a twist, because the “explorers” already know where to find all of their vast, untapped natural resources. Worlds beyond worlds, effectively infinite living space and mineral wealth.
And in all that time, they have never encountered another intelligent species. No cities, no vast empires, no civilizations and no equivalent of their own dragons, gryphons, spells, and wizards.
But all of that is about to change. It seems there is intelligent life elsewhere in the multiverse. Other human intelligent life, with terrifying new weapons and powers of the mind . . . and wizards who go by the strange title of “scientist.”
I wanted to like this book so very very much! It’s a great premise, and sounded like something that I’d particularly enjoy… but reading it felt like slogging uphill through liquid clay. I don’t know why, but it’s just not for me. So, I give up, and I’m counting it as officially abandoned / Did Not Finish!
That was fun – I hadn’t read this one before, so it was good to get some fresh material in between re-reading the first few books of the series. Resolute (KL #4) does fill you in on the essentials enough that it doesn’t matter if you have missed this, but I did like learning the extra details, and especially getting that look inside Jack’s head.
Just like the previous book in this series, the characters and setting pulled me in straight away. It’s relatively short, so it didn’t waste time on getting everything established, but nothing felt rushed either. It was nice to briefly visit the hero and heroine of the previous book, which set this book as occurring about 11 or 12 years after their story.
Claire and Ven were great, and I loved their interactions. Claire’s fear of discovery was palpable throughout, but she never let that get in the way of doing what she thought was right, whether that was accompanying Ven into a potentially dangerous situation with no quick way of defending herself, or helping her own people from the building she’d grown up in back on Uley. I also liked the way that we got a literal peek into Ven’s thoughts a couple of times via Claire. She may not have understood his intentions, but it showed the reader that he was keen on her too. I enjoyed the conclusion to the story, as well, and liked Ven’s reaction when he eventually discovered all Claire’s secrets.
Once again, though, I could have very happily read a novel-length version of this!!
View spoiler: Aliens and soldiers and vampires, oh my! Seriously, this is just genius. I love a genre mash-up, and this one was a ton of fun. Yes, a fair bit of it consisted of set pieces of Big Explosions, and the body-count was enormous, but that was kind of the point of the book. I also particularly liked the fundamental inability of the aliens to understand the human response to them. And the ending – oh, I had to stop reading and just laugh and laugh! Classic. This is one that I’ll read again.