Sunday, March 14, 2010

ARC Review: Mouse and Dragon by Sharon Lee and Steve Miller

Mouse and Dragon
Authors: Sharon Lee and Steve Miller
Publication: Baen Books (June 15, 2010)

Description: Aelliana Caylon has endured much, and finally, she appears to have won all: a spaceship, comrades, friends -- and the love of a pilot she adores.

Even better that her lover—the man who was destined for her, a man as much a loner as she—is also the Delm of Korval, arguably the most powerful person on all of Liad. He has the power to remove her and protect her from the toxic environment of her home Clan. Best of all, he agrees to sit as her co-pilot and her partner in a courier business.

Even happy endings sometimes show a few flaws. Such as Aelliana's home clan being not as agreeable to letting her go as it had first seemed. And the fact that someone is stealing pilots in the Low Port, which falls within the Delm of Korval's honor. Oh, and the revelation that the man she loves—the man who is destined for her—isn't entirely the man she thought he was. And finally, she discovers that even the lift from Liad she'd so fervently desired, is part of a larger plan, a plan requiring her to be someone she never thought she was, or could be.

My Thoughts: I loved this book. It is the kind of book that I wanted to begin reading again immediately after finishing it. I wanted to immerse myself in the world again. This one begins where Scout's Progress ended with Aelliana at the Healers trying to overcome the damage that was done to her by her brother Ran Eld. She has left her clan and taken refuge with Korval and Dav. However, her clan wants her back now that she has something they value -- her ship and her skill as a pilot.

Dav and Aelliana also have to deal with their new lifemating which brings them both joy and distress. I liked watching Aelliana grow and heal in this book. I also enjoyed seeing more about the years she and Dav spent together. Other subplots include the disappearance of pilots from Low Port and the growing conflict with the Terran League because of Anne's research of a common language between Earth, Liad and Xtrang(spelled wrong probably). Those well-versed in the series can also read in actions by the Department of the Interior that figures so prominently in books later in the timeline.

I knew how this book had to end because it slots into an existing series but I cried anyway because I was so involved in the story. This is an excellent example of character driven science fiction.

If you have never visited the Liaden Universe, I highly recommend the trip. You would have time to explore before this book comes out in June if you can find the books. The publication order listed below skips around in the internal chronology of the series. The books can be read in that order. Now, because I have read the series many times, I tend to read them in order of the internal chronology and begin with Local Custom and then Scout's Progress. The most recent books Fledgling and Saltation occur at approximately the same time as Agent of Change, Conflict of Honors, and Carpe Diem but follow Mouse and Dragon more directly.

Liaden Series (in Publication Order):
1. Agent of Change (1988)
2. Conflict of Honors (1988)
3. Carpe Diem (1989)
4. Plan B (1999)
5. Local Custom (2001)
6. Scout's Progress (2001)
7. I Dare (2001)
8. Balance of Trade (2004)
9. Fledgling (2009)
10. Saltation (2010)
11. Mouse and Dragon (2010)
Partners in Necessity (omnibus) (2000)
Pilot's Choice (omnibus) (2000)
The Dragon Variation (omnibus) (2010)

Challenges: 2010 E-Book Reading Challenge, RYOB Challenge


  1. Hi Kathy,

    Thanks again for taking part in Radiant Reviews (wow, how do you have the time to keep 2 blogs going - I struggle with just the one!)

    Again, this is another book I have not heard of but it sounds interesting. And I like the idea of the lifemating storyline. I've read a couple of books recently where lifemating has been involved and I think it just sounds so romantic!Great review!

  2. This isn't my usual type of book but it sounds very interesting. I will have to check out these authors.


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