06 July 2007
Book Banter -- Pretender
Title: Pretender (book two of the third Foreigner series/book 8 of the total Foreigner series)
Author: C.J. Cherryh
Length: 327 pages
Plot Basics: Interpreter, diplomat and human Lord of the Heavens Bren Cameron is once again caught up in the machinations of atevi politics. Reunited with the atevi lord Tabini, Bren is anxious to give his report about what he found in the trip to the space station, but Tabini is more interested in reclaiming his political position, drawing a confused Bren into a race for the capital.
Banter Points: Cherryh has a meandering style that delves deep into Bren’s thoughts that sometimes bogs down the books in this series, but not this one. The race for the capital and the political back-and-forth is page-turning excitement. Again, Cherryh’s insights into what makes us human shine forth as the reader follows Bren through an entirely alien environment.
Bummer Points: To finish out this series, there’s one more book, but this one seemed to have a fairly definitive ending, leaving Word Nerd wondering what’s next that deserves a whole book. Word Nerd Recommendation: This series is truly a political space opera, deftly played out with only a few dips in quality along the way. When Cherryh isn’t at her peak though, she’s still writing well above others and this series is well worth the commitment to nine books.