Prime Deceptions

Valerie Valdes. Harper Voyager, $16.99 trade paper (448p) ISBN 978-0-06-287725-3
Valdes’s quirky space opera sequel to Chilling Effect is more style than substance. Since escaping the Fridge crime syndicate, Capt. Eva Innocente of La Sirena Negra has settled into a life of freelance smuggling and plotting her revenge. When the shadowy organization that Eva’s sister, Mari, works for reaches out to Eva for help locating a Fridge scientist, the job leads the diverse crew of La Sirena Negra through a fan convention, robot pit fights, and old nemeses, to Garilia, where Eva once committed a war crime that left her wracked with guilt. Drawn back into Garilia’s tempestuous politics, Eva contends with cute robots with a sinister purpose, ancient technology, a tangled web of blackmail—and her Cuban family. While Eva’s personal growth and the found family aboard La Sirena Negra—including the crew’s psychic cats—will draw readers in and delight series fans, the constant glib, occasionally spiteful humor will not be to all tastes, as it relies on literalized memes, SFF fandom in-jokes, and obvious sexual innuendos for laughs. The result is an interplanetary adventure that feels more like a collage of pop culture references than a cohesive story. Agent: Quressa Robinson, Nelson Literary. (Sept.)
Reviewed on : 09/04/2020
Release date: 09/01/2020
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Horror
Ebook - 448 pages - 978-0-06-287727-7
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