When Novi, a young woman living on a remote mining outpost planet, sneaks aboard a docked star ship she is thrust into a world that she had longed dreamed of. Despite her modest upbringing, Novi has always been a dreamer and her dream was to travel the heavens. When she realizes she is now a stowaway on Ilar’s Justice, under the command of the greatest renegade and freedom fighter of all time, Ryfkin Soren, she understands her life is about to change forever. Ryfkin Soren and his band of freedom fighters are notorious throughout the galaxies as the only people to take on and defeat the mightiest and ruthless army in the Universe – that of the Guild Coalition.
When Novi is discovered aboard Ilar’s Justice she quickly realizes that the crew of renegades are not necessarily as scary as she had expected and indeed are tempered with compassion, friendliness, fun, and a heart for justice. She quickly finds herself drawn to the entire crew and determines to find a way to join them and be a part of their quest. Novi will discover, on their voyages, that she is much more than she initially believed herself to be. She will begin to understand that she has a part to play in this battle for justice and defeating the coalition. She is on a true voyage of discovery as she attempts to find out who she really is, where she really came from and what her future role is to be.
One thing I’ve always enjoyed about Landon’s stories is that no matter how weird or outlandish the characters may be, she always manages to infuse them with a sufficient amount of humanity and emotions for us readers to identify and empathise with them. As a character, Novi is the perfect blend of wide-eyed young girl and excited young woman embarking on a mission to discover herself. I really loved the youthful enthusiasm the author managed to inject into her character. The other principal characters in the story, especially Ryfkin Soren, all had endearing features about them that made their crew into one of the most feared and legendary groups in all of interplanetary space. I’ve always loved the simple, readable style Landon brings to her books and this one is no different. It reads like a “boy’s own” adventure story from my childhood but with many powerful, female lead characters that reassert the belief that women heroes are every bit as powerful and relateable as their male counterparts. Although not specifically broached in this, Book 1, I can see some amazing opportunities in the future stories for Landon to weave some romance, in the inimitable way she does, into the next adventures.
As a book clearly designed to set up the future Zenkoti Fables franchise, Star Child Awakening definitely hits all the right spots. We know Novi is on the cusp of discovering something vitally important to her future but also to the future of her new comrades and the inter-galactic community as a whole. I, for one, am extremely excited to see where this story goes next. Not usually a big fan of cliffhangers, I do love those that Landon leaves us with because I always know the next iteration of the story will be coming soon and it invariably will improve and expand on the current tale.
If Science fiction is your thing, or more importantly, if well-written, clever social commentary, delivered as part of an overall plot, and fast-paced, exciting action is your thing then you won’t want to miss Star Child Awakening (The Zenkoti Fables #1) by Petra Landon. I highly recommend it – roll on book two of this series.