09 July 2018
Record of a Spaceborn Few
Chambers, Becky. Record of a Spaceborn Few. Hodder & Stoughton, 2018.
This book picks up near the end of A Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet, and follows several different characters on board the ships of the Exodus Fleet. Reading the previous two works in the series is recommended but not required in order to enjoy this story.
This is a standard science fiction tale told from multiple viewpoints (which do eventually converge, for those who wonder), focusing on life on board the generation ship that left Earth decades ago in search of a new home for humanity. There is a lot of interaction with other sapients, some of whom look similar to humans and many who do not. If you enjoy watching Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, you will probably enjoy this story, as the Exodus Fleet has finished its journey and is now operating as a de facto space station.
I really enjoyed the world-building: descriptions of life in the ship and the way it is organized, the hi-jinks of the teen characters who just want off of the ship, the interactions with other sapient species, etc. While this isn't a plot-driven, action-focused page-turner, it is nonetheless highly enjoyable for its focus on character development. I found the writing compelling in spite of the lack of invasion by Borg or other such disasters. Also worth noting is the diversity within the human race: frequent use of gender neutral pronouns for persons whose gender identity is unknown as well as lack of assumptions regarding a person's sexual orientation, make this a relief and a comfort to read for those in the queer community. Highly recommended.
Recommended for: science fiction fans (teens and adults)
Red Flags: some mild action sequences; some dead bodies are seen (although we do not watch them die); teens use illicit drugs and attempt to obtain services from a sex worker (the issue here is that they are underage, not that they want sex).
Overall Rating: 5/5 stars
I received a complimentary copy of this book through Edelweiss for the purpose of review.