Monday, September 12, 2016

Sacred Planet, by Austin Rogers

Before picking up Austin Rogers's Sacred Planet: Book One of the Dominion Series, take note of the fact that it is book one.  I point that out to help you avoid making the same mistake I did.  I expected Rogers to wrap things up neatly as I got closer and closer to the end.  He didn't.  In some series of novels, each volume stands alone while building a fuller story.  In Rogers's case, it appears he's building one long epic.  This isn't a criticism, just a word about what to expect. 

Now, for the story itself.  Sacred Planet is an epic space opera.  Rogers builds a future of mankind, a few centuries out, that still looks to Earth as the cradle of civilization and pilgrimage planet.  The political arrangements and conflicts (as well as other story elements) might remind the reader of the Star Wars universe.  One of the main characters, a space salvager named Davin, and his ship and crew might remind the reader of the short-lived Firefly TV series. 

The story begins with Davin thinking they've struck gold.  A luxury ship has been hit, and they are in place to get some booty.  When they find a survivor, the daughter of an important politician, floating among the wreckage, their lives get a lot more complicated, and the balance of power in the galaxy gets a lot more interesting.

Rogers crafts the story and characters well, as he darts from the ship to political deliberations to an uprising of commoners.  It's all related, but, this being the first volume of the series, the threads are not fully brought together.  The good news for Rogers is that the story lines are strong enough that I think it will be worth checking out volume two. 

Thanks to the author for the complimentary electronic review copy!

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