Format Read: egalley
Source: the publisher in exchange for an honest review
Release Date: November 2013
Buying Links: Tyche Books Amazon* Barnes & Noble
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Blurb from publisher's site:
Captain Luta Paixon of the far trader Tane Ikai needs to know why she looks like a woman in her thirties–even though she’s actually eighty-four. She isn’t the only one desperate for that information.
The explanation might lie with her geneticist mother, who disappeared over sixty years ago, but even if her mother is still alive, it’s proving to be no small task to track her down in the vast, wormhole-ridden expanse of Nearspace. With the ruthless PrimeCorp bent on obtaining Luta’s DNA at any cost, her ninety-year-old husband asking for one last favor, and her estranged daughter locking horns with her at every turn, Luta’s search for answers will take her to the furthest reaches of space–and deep inside her own heart.
I don't read much science fiction but occasionally a book catches my eye. The blurb for this one was intriguing - a seemingly immortal woman who doesn't know why she's immortal and on a quest to find her missing mother. Science is not one of my better subjects so don't look to me for a critique on the science in this book. It seemed consistent, it worked for me, and that was good enough. :)
Luta is smart, loyal and a bit of a rebel. She's the captain of a trading space ship and willing to bend the law. She and mega corporation PrimeCorp are at odds with each other - they want her DNA and she's unwilling to give it. Her missing mother used to work for them and they believe that she injected something into Luta, something that she created for PrimeCorp and PrimeCorp wants it back. They try to lure Luta with promises of information on her mother but never deliver. Luta would prefer to keep her body and everything for herself and engages in a complex dance with PrimeCorp to keep her body her own.
There are two intertwined stories here; Luta's search for her mother, and the secret behind her (and her brother's) agelessness and seeming immortality. There's intrigue, espionage, secrets, family, friendship, loyalty, more secrets, action, and several twists and turns. Luta's relationship with her husband and their daughter is complicated while her relationships with her brother and her son are easier. There were times I wanted to smack Luta's daughter Maja for being such a whiny, selfish brat. Luta's crew is eclectic and engaging and good at their jobs. Ramsey does a good job of making each person in the story an individual, and like someone you might encounter in your own life. Ramsey has a sense of humor which manifests itself in the story and in chapter titles; I particularly enjoyed chapter 14's title - "Schrodinger's Cat is Alive and Well and Living Under An Assumed Name". :D
There are some unlikely coincidences, the pseudo language that Ramsey creates is just annoying, and the story dragged a few times, but overall it was a solidly well-written story. The ending answers some questions while leaving others open. The publisher's site doesn't indicate if there will be another book but I hope so. I want to know more and spend more time with these characters.