HelenEdith's Blog

The minutiae of my life, plus website updates and book reviews

Posts Tagged ‘scarborough’

Book Review: Anne McCaffrey & Elizabeth Ann Scarborough – Second Wave

Posted by HelenEdith on January 4, 2009

(Book two of the spin-off series dealing with Acorna’s Children)

This book is also about Khorii, daughter of Acorna and Aari. The plague from First Warning appears to have run its course, and Khorii, who has a talent for being able to see the plague, is checking whether the plague has really gone.

The illness may have, but it turns out that the bodies of those who died are not staying at rest. In fact, they have developed a taste for inorganic materials and have started devouring buildings and spaceships.

We don’t really get a resolution to this problem during Second Wave, but we do get Ariin entering the story. She is the twin who was stolen by Grimalkin and she was brought up in an earlier time by the Friends, who want to study her. She finds out the truth about herself and manages to get hold of Grimalkin’s time-travel device and brings herself forward to her own time, where she demands to see her parents.

Acorna and Aari are still in quarantine due to being plague carriers, but Ariin gets to meet her sister Khorii. Unlike Khorii, Ariin knows the truth about the cat Khiindi – namely that he’s really Grimalkin and responsible for her incarceration in the past. Khiindi knows that she knows, too!

I daresay that there will be a showdown between Ariin and Khiindi at some point, but it isn’t in this book. I will keep reading. I have Third Watch reserved at the library even as I write this.

I should add a note about the glossary at the end of the book. It’s useful to refer to in order to keep the growing number of characters in the series straight, but you almost need to get the glossary from the previous book rather than this one to use as reference, as the glossary at the end of this book lets slip some of the items of the plot.

The other comment I would make about this book is that the editing was a bit questionable. I noticed a couple of things that weren’t “quite right”, but the most glaring was a reference to Petaybee (which is a planet in a different series written by McCaffrey and Scarborough) in a context where I think that Vhiliinyar or maybe narhii-Vhiliinyar was the intended place.

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Book Review: Anne McCaffrey & Elizabeth Ann Scarborough – Deluge

Posted by HelenEdith on September 20, 2008

(Book three of The Twins of Petaybee)

Much of Deluge takes place away from Petaybee, as the twins leave on a mission to help their friend Marmie, who has been arrested for rescuing the people from Halau.

There is action going on upon Petaybee as well, as the resourceful folks from Kilcoole evade the invading force who, after arresting Marmie, have decided to turn their attentions to the inhabitants of Petaybee.

The twins end up on the prison world Gwinnet, where Marmie has been taken, along with the refugees from Halau and all of Marmie’s not incosiderable number of employees. There they set about trying to free Marmie, assisted by Sky the otter and Zuzu the cat. Things don’t go entirely their own way, and their alien friends help out in ways that aren’t always completely helpful.

It all ends happily with everyone back where they belong, and this could be the end of the series, although if McCaffrey and Scarborough wish to continue it, there are plenty of characters left to explore.

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Book Review: Anne McCaffrey & Elizabeth Ann Scarborough – First Warning

Posted by HelenEdith on September 20, 2008

(Book one of the spin-off series dealing with Acorna’s Children)

In this book, McCaffrey and Scarborough introduce Khorii, Acorna’s daughter. Acorna and her life-mate Aari do also feature in the book, but they take a minor role. The central character of the book is Khorii.

Khorii and her parents are on a simple journey through space (on the Condor, with Captain Becker and his first mate, the Makahomian Temple Cat RoadKill) to visit Acorna’s adopted human relatives when they chance upon a derelict space-liner whose passengers and crew are all dead. It turns out to be their first experience of a plague which is spreading through the Universe.

Khorii uses her healing powers as she has never had to before, as she undertakes a trip through various systems in an attempt to cure people of the plague. She is accompanied by her own Makahomian Temple Cat, Khiindi, who happens to be Grimalkin, trapped in cat form. (Grimalkin popped up in earlier Acorna books, where he was an Ancestral Friend who used his shape-shifting abilities to get up to mischief one too many times, which is how he comes to be confined to a cat’s shape.)

Once again, McCaffrey and Scarborough have come up with a good spacefaring adventure yarn, and I will be on the lookout for the later books in the series, of which I believe there are already a couple.

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Book Review: Anne McCaffrey & Elizabeth Ann Scarborough – Maelstrom

Posted by HelenEdith on August 4, 2008

(Book two of The Twins of Petaybee)

This is another good adventure story. It takes place partly on Halau, an uninhabitable planet where the Honu turtle came from, where the Twins, with the help of Marmie Algemeine and her spaceship “Piaf” go to rescue the remaining Honu turtles and their people; and partly on Petaybee.

The rescue on Halau upsets the commander of a Federation spaceship, and he features again later on in the story.

However, the rescued people and their aquatic animals are delivered by Marmie to Petaybee, where the Twins, in their seal form, escort the Honu to their new home in waters warmed by a volcano. The Twins also want to find the Deep Sea Otters and warn them about the new life forms arriving on Petaybee, as the Honu aren’t all they bring back from Halau, and the other species they bring back is rather less benign than the Honu.

Murel falls asleep while in the ocean and gets attacked by a pod of Orcas who don’t realise that she isn’t just any old seal, but she gets rescued in the nick of time when a whirlpool appears and pulls her under. It would spoil the plot to tell you what happens next. Some of it borders a bit close to fantasy for my liking, but as the plot thickens, it all turns out to be quite reasonable after all.

The story introduces some completely new and unexpected characters at that point; and it also reintroduces the disgruntled spaceship captain from Halau. There are enough developments arising from what happens next, that you’d just know that there was going to be another book in the series, even if you weren’t already aware of its existence. 🙂

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Book Review: Anne McCaffrey & Elizabeth Ann Scarborough – Changelings

Posted by HelenEdith on March 22, 2008

(Book one of The Twins of Petaybee)

It is some time since I read the original three Petaybee novels, and I was pleased to see that McCaffrey and Scarborough have revisited Petaybee and produced a new series set there.

Petaybee is a planet which has been terraformed and settled, with the settlers mainly being Irish and Innuit. It’s a cold planet, and Sean Shongili, who appeared in the original series, is genetically modified and able to shape-shift between human and seal forms – which makes him a Selkie – a useful adaption in such a cold climate.

He is married to Yana Maddock, who also appeared in the original series, and this novel starts with the birth of their twins Ronan Born for Water Shongili and Murel Monster Slayer Shongili. The twins have inherited their father’s shape-shifting ability.

This novel follows the twins from babyhood to adolescence, and charts the mishaps and dangers encountered by a pair of Selkie children whose abilities need to be kept secret from off-worlders who would like to capture them and study them.

As always, McCaffrey and Scarborough manage to spin a good tale and I’m looking forward to reading the next book in the series.

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