Assassin’s Orbit, by John Appel

Review copy provided by the publisher. Also the author is a convention/online buddy for the last few years (and his wife and one of his kids as well).

John Appel is having a good time.

I am often dubious about the advice to write the books you want to read, because there are loads of reasons why a particular person might not be able to do that. (Let’s start with: not everyone is a writer.) I’m pretty sure that John, however, wanted to read a book that was an action-packed space adventure full of older characters (mostly women from non-European cultural origins) who had to use their lifetimes of experience as their situation spiraled from a multiple-murder crime scene into riots and beyond to a coup attempt with interplanetary implications.

And that’s what he did.

For the moment, at least, John is not going to make the list of lapidary writers crafting perfect gems of sentences. Luckily for all of us, he doesn’t pretend that that’s what he’s after, instead of focusing on getting his readers as many varieties of action as the plot can bear, leaning on research and personal experience for the bits that go biff-bang-pow and imagination for the bits that are interplanetary spies and nanotech mind control.

(Uh. We hope.)

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