Friday, August 17, 2012

Book Report #47 - Diving into the Wreck by Kristine Kathryn Rusch

Now THIS is SF! Old-school adventure story in space. Like the folks who dive on ship wrecks in the Earth's oceans Boss (who narrates the story but does not tell us her name) is in the business of finding and exploring derelict spacecraft. Mostly she's in it for the history although she's managed to make a fair living at it.

One day she finds a ship, an enormous and old ship, one that should not be in the region of space she's found it in. And it's dangerous; there is a technology on board that is still powered up and it's claiming lives.

This is what I want in SF; nuts and bolts, ships that need repair, crews that have conflicting personalities and desires. There are no aliens with weird names with apostrophes in strange places, no need to learn a new culture or history. We are dealing with humans and although there is an Empire and an Alliance Rush does not waste time explaining the ins and outs of the universe she's creating. In just a few sentences we learn there was a war between the two groups ( the Empire won) and we are in a region of space that is pretty much left alone as a bit of a frontier. 'Nuff said.

I'm sure she'll go on to expand on the world inhabited by the crew of the "Nobody's Business" but if she makes it part of the story without veering off into back story then I'll know that I'm in the hands of a very skilled story-teller.

There is nothing I hate more than exposition. If it takes more than a paragraph or two to explain the environment of the tale then the author is not as skilled as he could be.

The book was laid out in three parts and although the middle section was not very action packed it was a good place to expand our knowledge of the history of the world Rusch is building.

The third part of the book was very interesting and opened wide the door to future books.

I am so glad I read the original short story and now the novel.

I've already purchased the next two books in the series plus an issue of Asimov's for a short story in the "Diving" universe.

Kristine Kathryn Rusch's website is HERE

The original publication of the Diving into the Wreck short story was in Asimov's magazine, December 2005.

It was also collected in Recovering Apollo 8.  Buy it HERE

The novel can be purchased HERE

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