City of Pearl
Karen Traviss
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Buy *City of Pearl* online City of Pearl

Karen Traviss
400 pages
February 2004
rated 4 of 5 possible stars

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What happens when three alien societies lay claim to the same star? Confusion, danger, possible annihilation of an entire race and even a bit of humor thrown in for good measure. The real trouble actually begins with the arrival of the Gethes from - guess where - Earth. You gotta love it; we are ever the troublemakers.

Shan Frankland, an Environmental Hazard Enforcement officer, has lead a mission to Cavanaghís Star even though it means she cannot go home for one hundred fifty years - talk about a long road trip. When she lands with scientists and Marines in tow, it is duly noted by Aras the planetís appointed overseer. He is a particularly pathetic being himself, as he is an eternally evolving world. He has destroyed millions of aliens and their entire cities in a misguided attempt to protect the delicate natives over whom he watches. Shan and her entourage, plus the group of humans, could face similar destruction or something even worse. Aras has in his possession a secret of the blood that would bring only death and suffering to them if it came into human hands that is - providing that the gethes actually survive the war their arrival has accidentally precipitated.

The characters in City of Pearl are warmly believable, the dialogue deftly convincing. With a complex plot woven together expertly with aliens as compelling as they are imaginative, the story moves along so well that you will finish it in one sitting.

City of Pearl is Karen Travissí debut novel, but you would never know it to read the book. It is the work of a seasoned professional. Innovative and vigorous can best describe science fictionís newly arrived star.

© 2004 by Camden Alexander for Curled Up With a Good Book

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