Honor Among Thieves by Rachel Caine
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Really enjoyable start to the series: from dystopian New Detroit to life aboard Nadim, the worlds were clearly described. I rounded this up from 3.5 because those worlds were also incredibly familiar to anyone who has read YA dystopias or watched Farscape (really? a Leviathan? and including one named Moia?). The relationship between Zara and Beatrice is the one that feels the most real, two very different people who are forced to work and live together in incredibly weird circumstances. And then there's the question of why, exactly, the Leviantians have offered to help Earth. Not quite Soylent Green, as far as I can tell, but the question does arise. What happens next will determine (for me) how derivative this series will be. Not sure that the target audience will care, much as they haven't with other series that seem to rely heavily on others for ideas.
Having said that, the travel to other planets is pretty well done. Nadim's "deep sleep" and the alien who comes to the rescue is a great episode - how do you communicate with someone who is completely different from you, with no common language or signals? Will the next books explore that further? or will they rely on the more usual experiences in sci-fi?
ARC provided by publisher.