Sword of Orion (Beneath Strange Skies, No 1)
by Sharon Lee
Review by Paul Haggerty
Phobos Books Paperback ISBN/ITEM#: 0972002685
Date: October, 2005 List Price $14.95 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Official Info /
Jerel Telmon is a relatively happy sixteen year old, living with her uncle Orned after her parents were lost in the war. Jerel thinks she has a perfectly normal life. She goes to school, works at a part-time job as a courier, and finds herself kidnapped by people who think she's the key to restoring the Oligarchy. Okay, perhaps that last part is not normal, but suddenly this is the life she's living whether she's ready for it or not.
After escaping from her captors using a wonderfully inventive mind and a MacGyver-like plan, Jerel goes on the run with her uncle Orned, her best friend/maybe boyfriend Kay, and Erazias, an old friend of the family who once served her parents in the war. And as usual, the adults in the group seem to think the best way to keep the kids under control is to not tell them anything. While this might be the best way to keep the really important stuff from the reader, it does nothing to help the children make good decisions.
The four begin a whirlwind tour of local space, staying just one step ahead of their pursuers and meeting up with unlikely allies in unlikelier places. All goes well until the book suddenly ends. Nothing is tied up and, in fact, we're left on a cliff-hanger. This is, unfortunately the new pattern in series novels. And while few authors are really good enough to carry off the disappointment of making you wait for the next installment, Lee and Miller do have the pull. And so, disappointed but calmly awaiting my next fix, I'll be a good little reader and avidly await book 2 to find out what's happening to some of my new best friends.