The Galaxy, and the Ground Within

Harper Voyager. (Wayfarers, Bk. 4). Apr. 2021. 336p. ISBN 9780062936035. $27.99. SF
The planet Gora has no water, no breathable atmosphere, and no natural life, but its location at the hub of five other systems is ideal as a pit stop for space tourists. Many have taken advantage of this, including Ouloo, a Laru who sets up the Five-Hop One-Stop, a multispecies establishment to cater to the needs of weary travelers. When a technological error shuts down all travel in and out of Gora, Ouloo and her child end up with three strangers, all waiting for their chance to leave. As time passes and the group begins to interact, the trio have time to ponder who they are. Roveg, an exiled artist; Pei, a cargo hauler; and Speaker, a person of relatively unknown past, will find that previous decisions and future possibilities collide in conversation and reflection, revealing ignorance, anxiety, and hope. Throw in a determined hostess with a pubescent child, and you have a story filled with heart-warming characters and intriguing connections.
VERDICT Chambers (To Be Taught if Fortunate) once again creates an epic space setting with a detailed, personal view of some of its inhabitants. Humor and heartache weave through her insightful prose and diverse characters.
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