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review 2020-01-20 23:19
Invader / C.J. Cherryh
Invader - C.J. Cherryh

Nearly two centuries after the starship Phoenix disappeared, leaving an isolated colony of humans on the world of the atevi, it unexpectedly returns, threatening the stability of both atevi and human governments. With the situation fast becoming critical, Bren Cameron, the brilliant, young paidhi to the court of the atevi is recalled from Mospheira where he has just undergone surgery. Upon his return to the mainland, he Cameron finds that his government has sent in his paidhi-successor, Deana Hanks—representative of a dangerous faction on Mospheira who hate the atevi.

Haunted by the threat of assassination, Bren realizes his only hope may be to communicate with the Phoenix as the spokesman of the atevi—an action which may cut him off for good from his own species. Yet if he doesn't take this desperate action, he may be forced to witness the destruction of the already precarious balance of world power.

 

I am well and truly hooked on this series! Bren Cameron is such an understandable main character. I’ve struggled with non-English languages--specifically several undergraduate courses in Ancient Greek--which almost broke my brain. The necessity of doing math in one’s head in order to know which word ending to use would reduce me to jelly in no time.

This book picks up quickly from where the first book left off. There is a great deal of tension provided by Bren wondering just how well he understands the atevi society around him. The atevi seem to thrive on intrigue and when that is combined with the cultural differences and a complex language, this is a fearsome barrier to understanding.

Despite this, Bren seems to have made a very favourable impression with the atevi around him. He is packed into a suite next door to the current ruler, complete with a large staff who all vie to provide the best service, be the most useful, and just generally receive his thanks. Technically they are Damiri’s staff, but she mock-accuses him of trying to sweet talk them away from her. Plus, she lets us know, all the female staff are longing to get their hands on him! Ah, the allure of novelty!

Cherryh leaves us at a critical juncture, making me wish I had book three in my hand right this minute! However, I’ll have to wait until the library produces it from one of the branch libraries. In the meanwhile, I’ll work on other books in my reading queue.

Book number 349 in my Science Fiction and Fantasy reading project.

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review 2017-10-06 13:10
Invader (audiobook) by C.J. Cherryh, narrated by Daniel Thomas May
Invader: Foreigner Sequence 1, Book 2 - Daniel Thomas May,Audible Studios,C.J. Cherryh

I don't have much to say about this that I didn't already say in my review for the paper book and my review for the first audiobook. It was nice knowing all the things Bren didn't know this time around, and man I really wanted him to get some rest and read his post-surgery care instructions. I had forgotten how much of the beginning of the book involved Bren dragging himself from one problem to another when all he desperately wanted to do was sleep.

I continued to enjoy Daniel Thomas May's narration. As in the first audiobook, I loved him as Bren and was a bit iffier about some of his atevi voices. At any rate, I have the next four books in audio form and am looking forward to listening to them.

 

(Original review posted on A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions.)

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text 2017-08-11 00:11
Reading progress update: I've listened 774 out of 997 minutes.
Invader: Foreigner Sequence 1, Book 2 - Daniel Thomas May,Audible Studios,C.J. Cherryh

"'The paidhi is very gracious,' Damiri said, and offered her hand, expecting his: he gave it, perforce, compelled to look up to a straightforwardly curious stare, a very solid handclasp. 'Scandal, scandal, scandal. I think it's a very nice, a very honest face, myself, and my aunt can swallow her salacious and doubtless entirely envious suspicions. -You're so exquisitely polite, nand' paidhi.'

'I- hope to be, daja-ma.'

'I may never get my staff back. They're quite besotted.'

'I- hope I've done nothing improper, daja-ma.'

'Bren-paidhi. They dream nightly of you doing something improper. I've heard the reports.'

'Daja-ma-'"

 

The thought of Bren being an accidental atevi ladies' man makes me laugh every time.

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text 2017-08-08 20:20
Reading progress update: I've listened 492 out of 997 minutes.
Invader: Foreigner Sequence 1, Book 2 - Daniel Thomas May,Audible Studios,C.J. Cherryh

"'You said they were respectable people.'

 

'I said they were scholarly. I didn't say they were respectable, nadi-ji.'"

 

This made me think of a couple professors I know. One of them once had a student publicly pray for her soul. I think she was teaching a Human Sexuality course at the time?

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text 2017-08-07 21:14
Reading progress update: I've listened 429 out of 997 minutes.
Invader: Foreigner Sequence 1, Book 2 - Daniel Thomas May,Audible Studios,C.J. Cherryh

"'It's all quite instructive, paidhi-ji. I've learned who you contact, I've learned who are your associates and who are petulant and ill-disposed. I've learned that the paidhi considers the letters of ordinary citizens to be answered seriously. -So when I voted in the Guild, I also spoke about that, nand' paidhi. I'm not supposed to tell you that, but I did. Also Algini flew back from Malguri early, so he could vote on your behalf.'"

 

I just had a knee-jerk "Aww, Tano's kind of sweet" reaction, which just goes to show that I would probably end up dead or get someone killed if I were in Bren's place.

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