Book Review

AFTERBURN
by S. L. Viehl

Genre: Science Fiction, General Science Fiction

RT Rating

Viehl returns to K-2, the world of the water-dwelling 'Zangians, for the second entry in her Bio Rescue series. As the Allied League of Worlds gathers on K-2 for a peace summit, one of the ambassador's transports is attacked en route.

Bio Rescue Sublieutenant Burn mu Znora manages to intercept the shuttle
and foil the attempted kidnapping
of the ambassador's daughter, Liana. Meanwhile, one of K-2's migrant races
is demanding its own world, and other planets are looking for a share of K-2's ample water supply. Amid interplanetary
politics, Burn, who's been assigned to protect Liana, discovers that his charge protects a potentially deadly secret—and at least one delegate seeks to undermine
the fragile peace the 'Zangians are work-ing to preserve.

Strong world-building carries a far-flung, potentially complicated plot in this adventurous space opera. Viehl's various species are fully fleshed out, with individual habits and customs
that bring inventively non-humanoid characters to vivid life.

Characters from Viehl's previous novel, Bio Rescue, reappear, but the plot stands well on its own and pulls in several secondary characters whom one hopes will get their own stories as well. Character-rather than science-driven, this is a science fiction novel with heart—one that will appeal to fans of romantic suspense as well as space fiction. (Aug., 320 pp., $23.95)

Reviewed By: Jen Talley Exum

Publisher: Roc

Published: August 2005

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