Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Book Review: A Liaden Universe Constellation by Sharon Lee and Steve Miller

A Liaden Universe Constellation
Author: Sharon Lee & Steve Miller
Series: Liaden Universe Collection - Book 1
Publication: Baen Books (December 8, 2013)

Description: Thirty‑three shorter tales of the Liaden Universe® brought together for the first time in two mega‑volumes.  Seventeen tales to start with in Volume One!

The nationally best‑selling Liaden Universe® novels are treasured by space opera aficionados for their wit, world‑building, strong characterizations, tender romance, and edge‑of‑the‑chair action.

Since 1995, Sharon Lee and Steve Miller also created shorter tales, illuminating additional facets of the Liaden experience. Here is a vast tapestry of tales of the scouts, artists, traders, priestesses, sleight of hand magicians, and pilots who fill the Liaden Universe® with the excitement, action, and romance that readers of the hit series have come to adore.

My Thoughts: This is a collection of seventeen stories from the Liaden Universe that were first published in the authors' chapbooks. While they provide new insights for long-time fans of the Liaden Universe series like me, they are also a great introduction to the character-driven science fiction the authors are know for.

There are a couple of stories about Val Con yos'Phelium as he is before we meet him in Agent of Change. One of the stories tells about one his first missions where he meets Edger, the Clutch turtle, and how they came to be brothers. Another tells of a skimmer race on Liad when he and Shan outrage Lady Kareen.

There are stories of Pat Rin yos'Phelium which tell about him balancing for a man who committed suicide, deciding on what he wants to do with his life since he is neither a pilot nor a dramliz. I especially liked the story where he and Nova are sorting some rugs for Luken Bel'Tarda and he learns some interesting things both about Nova and about how Bel'Tarda became part of Korval.

I liked the stories about Moonhawk and Lute even if I can't figure out how, or if, they fit into the Liaden Universe. I also enjoyed the story about Priscilla and why she was exiled from her home planet of Sintia. Another story is also related to Priscilla's as it tells about the events that led to her exile from a different point of view.

All of the stories were engaging and interesting.

Favorite Quote:
One of the questions that readers often ask writers is, "Where do you get your ideas?"

There are a couple of ways to reply to this, depending on your writer. In general, answers range from Harlan Ellison's now-classic, "I get my ideas from a post office box in Schenectady," to the more factual, and most often disbelieved, "Ideas are easy," to the in-your-face, "Do you mean that you don't have ideas? For God's sake, tell me how to make them stop!"
I bought this one. You can buy your copy here.

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