Honor's Knight - Rachel Bach

...And the stars look very different today.

 

I feel like I'm distancing myself from my initial love affair with the first book...now that I've read the second book, I've floated above it, the luster of the Paradox trilogy has worn off. To be fair, I think some of that is coming from the fact that I'm not impressed with the first 10% of the third book...but I digress.

 

In Honor's Knight, Devi Morris is still security team lead for the dangerous and mysterious ship, the Glorious Fool. At the onset however, she's missing a big chunk of her memory and hiding some very weird things going on with her body - a creepy moldy skin affliction that comes and goes and some messed up hallucinations.

 

From the opening, we are bounced around a lot with Devi. After she regains her memories she tries out EVERYONE as an ally, and then takes turns with EVERYONE as the enemy. In fact, most of conflict and resolution is circular in nature and does little to move the story forward. For all the action, the only result is that Devi holds a key to the salvation of the universe - but first she has to trust some people to help her unlock it. But that seemed to pretty much be the leading sense at the end of Fortune's Pawn... 

 

Since she alternately trusts and distrusts all major characters, and no new characters are introduced, we live in Devi's head with very little revelatory dialogue. Devi's head is a weird place to be because she's very one dimensional. The same issues I had in Fortune's Pawn are amplified in Honor's Knight - she's not sympathetic, or thoughtful,  and at times comes off a little brutish and juvenile.

 

Additionally, we lack any real connection with all the other players, so everyone is pretty cardboard. Especially this connection with her love interest Rupert. The romance is such a fail to me that I wish it wasn't even part of the story...but I think this is a gripe I'll have more time to talk about in the final book. Moving on...

 

So, what did I like about Honor's Knight? I still like the wildly imaginative story, even though I'm having problems with the execution. Getting some background on 'the daughters' is the most exciting part of this installment - the chilling use of children as weapons is providing some much needed emotional depth. I find the scenes with the lizard aliens to be great, and some of the interactions between Captain Caldswell and Devi to be amusing.

 

I look forward to finishing Heaven's Queen, for no other reason than I want to put a bow on this series this week. At 10% in, I can't say I'm enthused with the direction, but I certainly want some answers to my questions - Will Devi be able to figure out her shiz and save all humanity?  Will Caldswell and Brenton play nice? Will Nova and Nic reunite and occupy the same ship in harmony?  Will Rupert stop looking at Devi like she's the only thing in the universe? I hope so on that last one 'cuz that totally makes me gag.

 

(Space Oddity by David Bowie was on repeat in my head this afternoon...can you tell?)