In this imaginative and engaging page-turner, James Vigor brings to life a number of fascinating characters to populate an action-packed story mostly set in space. This is science fiction at its best. But it is also more than that. Its themes of justice, abuse, slavery, piracy, and the eternal prominence given to wealth, are all explored through the thoughts, actions and choices of the empathetically created cast of varied characters.
That the protagonist is a strong, intelligent, though sometimes naïve, young woman allows the reader more easily to enjoy a story of a type generally noted for its male-centric style. The influence of gaming shows, particularly in the action and fighting scenes, and this will certainly appeal to the young adult readership the book is aimed at. But there is also depth here, through the exploration of motive, habit, loyalty, and the overarching and often negative aspects of military training.
Winter, the female protagonist, grows from selfish smuggler to a person who cares about the problems and lives of others. And the relationships between the characters reveal personality traits that in some allow for development and in others fix attitudes and actions more rigidly.
The tensions mount as the story proceeds, with most chapters ending on a cliff-hanger that has the reader moving on to the next action rather than laying down the book for another day. This book is a thoroughly good read.
[Any review is a personal opinion. No reviewer can represent the view of anyone else. The best we can manage is an honest reaction to any given book.]