Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Audiobook Review: Plan B by Sharon Lee and Steve Miller

Plan B
Author: Sharon Lee and Steve Miller
Narrator: Andy Caploe
Publication: Audible, Sept. 4, 2012
Length: 14 hours and 2 minutes

Description: Pursued across space by the ultra-secret Department of the Interior, hunted by the galaxy-wide Juntavas syndicate, former Agent of Change Val Con yos'Phelium and his ex-soldier lifemate Miri Robertson have commandeered the only spaceship on Vandar and fled, seeking help from Miri's newly discovered kin on Lytaxin. Elsewhere, Clan Korval is in action. Scattered across space by the newly invoked Plan B, certain clan members pursue the search for the long-missing Val Con

First Speaker Nova yos'Galan returns to Lufkit, seeking clues, as Dutiful Passage, Korval's premier tradeship, arms itself for war - and discovers treachery. Back on Lytaxin, Miri's homecoming is interrupted by a full-scale Yxtrang planetary invasion. Then things start to get really interesting....

My Thoughts: This story was published after a ten year gap during which clamor for more stories in the Liaden Universe was rampant on the newly burgeoning internet. It weaves together stories about a number of the characters introduced in the first three Liaden Universe books.

Val Con and Miri have stolen the ship of the agent sent to find Val Con on the interdicted world of Vandar. They are determined to go to Miri's kin on Lytaxin. Unbeknown to herself, Miri is a descendant of the line direct of Clan Erob. Miri is used to thinking of herself as terran and this comes as a not-very-welcome surprise to her.

They arrive on Lytaxin in the aftermath of a local political uprising and are there for the Yxtrang invasion that follows it.  Miri finds herself involved in the military response to the invasion. Only the remnants of the mercenary forces who fought the uprising are still on planet when the Yxtrang arrive. Luckily, some of the remaining are members of Miri's old unit.

Val Con also discovers that a captured Yxtrang is the same man that he met and talked with years earlier when both were exploring an otherwise unsettled plant. Nelirikk Explorer has had a hard time since. Being captured by the enemy was enough to make him No Troop and a despised hanger-on in his force. He was captured when his troop sent him out on a survey mission with defective goods and no intention to retrieve him. Val Con does manage to convince him to throw in with the new Lytaxin forces and become sworn to Clan Korval. Nelirikk's main job is acting as Aide to Miri.

Meanwhile, Shan and Priscilla have their own problems. With Plan B in force, they must offload cargo and some crew and outfit the Dutiful Passage as a warship. They find that one of the new weapons pods they loaded in has been sabotaged by the Department of the Interior with the intention of destroying the ship. They also need to figure out Val Con's message which tells them to meet him where Miri's people live. When they finally get to Lytaxin, it is in the middle of the Yxtrang invasion and Shan finds himself taking refuge on the planet while Priscilla becomes ship's captain and battles theYxtrang in space.

Nova is also busy searching for Val Con. Her quest takes her to Commander Lizardi who has recently seen Val Con and Miri and then to Fender to hire mercenaries to go to Lytaxin to rescue her brother Val Con and his lifemate Miri. There they meet Suzuki who was Miri's commander before her retirement and who is hiring mercenaries to go to Lytazin and rescue the rest of her mercenaries. The turtles are also on the hunt for Val Con and Miri and follow much the same path as Nova.

The story is filled with action with battles in space and on Lytaxin. This doesn't even count the problems that Anthora is having back on Liad when the Department of the Interior focuses its attention on her.

I liked the narration. Andy Caploe did a good job making all of the various voices distinct and recognizable. His reading was also great at showing the building tension in the story.

I bought this one. You can buy your copy here.

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