Endurance by S.L. Viehl
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Endurance (A Stardoc Novel)by S.L. Viehl
This is the third offering in the Stardoc Novels and would round out a nice trilogy for those who need to take a break in reading before venturing into the remaining seven. Personally I'd recommend the reader to read the forth book; because some of the major questions that have been lurking in the first three will finally be answered. But probably not all questions.
In the previous book Beyond Varallan our hero Cherijo is stuck between a rock and a hard place and decides the only way to get out of it is to use her connection to the Hsktskt-piratical slavers-to turn the table and pretty much send a whole fleet into slavery. This does not endear her to her own fellows and since she's discovered that almost everyone close to her has betrayed her she's at the furthest end of her rope, while trying to run the slaver's hospital and keep the slaves in good order so they can be sold out to slavery.
This is a novel that digs the furthest into that dark spot where I've defined her relationships as being Schizoid in nature. Despite the torture and near death experiences rife within the story there is still time for romance and Cherijo again finds herself torn between lovers and being pursued by more of those than she cares.
Once again the reader delves into the strange nature of the aliens within this series; but ever more strange is the man known as Reever who is the most perplexing of characters in the series. Yet more perplexing is that Cherijo has such a problem pulling herself away from this horrible person. Even though there might be some justification in Reever's attitude in this story there is a huge stretch of the reader's patience with Cherijo throughout the story. This all works out, somehow, but it becomes quite thin right up to the end.
Lots of surprises in this one and more back-story to take us to the forth novel
Great and Strange SFF for the Fans who like both the Star Wars and Star Trek fiction franchise that is out there. A bit of a stretch often for the purists in SF, but if you do give it a try, you need to read the first four almost as one book to get the full picture of things. Maybe even eventually understand how Cherijo can end up so messed up.
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