SFF

Mirage

DAW. (Web Shifter’s Library, Bk. 2). Aug. 2020. 432p. ISBN 9780756415600. $26. SF
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Esen-alit-Quar is a member of the Descendants of Ersh who were the first of their kind to leave their interstellar home and acquire intelligence. She is now an inhabitant of the Library and a friend to the humans and aliens that live there. When the Library and the people who live there are threatened by Kraal affiliates, Esen and her human friend, Paul, take on nearly insurmountable odds to save the Library and its inhabitants. Meanwhile, Paul wishes to reignite the spark that was once there between him and Esen—a challenge that proves as daunting as protecting the Library and the chimera patrons. The concept of an “All Species’ Library of Linguistics and Culture” is a novel idea that could have worked on so many levels. Unfortunately, the uneven writing, a plethora of underdeveloped characters, and a tedious plot results in a tale that never reaches its full potential.
VERDICT Despite the popularity of Czerneda’s earlier works, (e.g., “Trade Pact Universe” trilogy), this new series, beginning with the first book, Search Image, is not quite up to par. Still, longtime fans of the author may want to give it a try.

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