Her Brother's Keeper

Mike Kupari. Baen, $16 trade paper (384p) ISBN 978-1-4767-8090-0
Kupari (Dead Six, with Larry Correia) makes his solo debut in this unsatisfying galaxy-spanning space adventure set in our far future. Catherine Blackwood's estranged aristocratic family intrudes on her successful privateering business, sending word that her brother Cecil is being held for ransom on the distant, barren planet Zanzibar. Catherine takes her crew and a plucky band of "Texan" mercenaries—along with a young girl who dreams of going to space—to rescue Cecil. But while her ship rockets toward Zanzibar, Cecil discovers the planet's secret history, thought to be lost forever. The rescue attempt doesn't begin to unfold until the novel's last 100 pages; most of Kupari's narrative is devoted to establishing the cast of characters, but few are given any intriguing or original motivation. After the characters have been named (confusingly—there's an Anna and an Annie), the crew spends a lengthy, too-realistic time traveling to their destination while engaging in pointless subplots. Catherine is ostensibly the protagonist, being the ship's captain and subject of the title, but the focus rapidly shifts to grizzled space cop Marcus. It doesn't really matter, though, since nobody experiences any significant character development. There's also a strange mix of sexual mores. Though Kupari pulls out the stops for some high-energy action scenes, the book's plodding pace and uninspired characters muddy any entertainment that might be found. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 12/21/2015
Release date: 11/03/2015
Genre: Fiction
Mass Market Paperbound - 528 pages - 978-1-4767-8201-0
MP3 CD - 978-1-5318-0973-7
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