Humans, in space, trying to make a living, making mistakes, dealing with competitors, bureaucrats, the outbreak of war, ship repairs, mercenaries, mutinies, murder, running out of fuel, running out of money ...
Yup. People being people. In space.
Ky Vatta is the daughter of a vast family-run interstellar shipping company who breaks with family tradition and joins the military instead of the business.
She is thrown out of her unit and discharged under a cloud of controversy and dishonour. The family takes her in and givers her a simple job to get out of the limelight and time to recover from the blow.
But the character traits that lead her into the military compel her to deviate from the plan of taking an old freighter to the scrap yard and she tries to use the opportunity to earn enough money to repair the ship and go into business for herself.
But the galaxy of other humans have plans of their own that conflict with hers.
It was terrific fun and I love this kind of SF, where being is space is no different to humans than being at sea.
Elizabeth Moon has a terrific way of just making the character believable. Ky Vatta makes all kinds of decisions that just make sense - they are logical. I especially loved the moment in the book where Ky has an epiphany and decides that doing what is expected is exactly what got her into trouble (Other than the original decision to deviate from the flight path that is.) and starts making decisions instead of following orders from everybody who feels they have the right to tell her what to do.
Elizabeth Moon's website - http://www.elizabethmoon.com/