Genre: paranormal science fiction.
Cover: strong, I like it.
Jean Johnson--the national bestselling author of the Sons of Destiny novels--returns to the world she introduced in A Soldier's Duty. After having a terrible vision of the future Ia must somehow ensure the salvation of her home galaxy long after she’s gone…
Promoted in the field for courage and leadership under fire, Ia is now poised to become an officer in the Space Force Navy--once she undertakes her Academy training. First, however, she travels back home to Sanctuary, a heavyworld colony being torn apart by religious conflict. Ia must prepare her family and followers for the hardships they will endure in order to secure the galaxy's survival.
Her assignment is to command a Blockade Patrol Ship. Her goal, to safe as many lives as she can. But at the Academy, she discovers an unexpected challenge: the one man who could disrupt those plans, the man whose future she cannot foresee. And time is running out for Ia, for the galaxy is on the brink of the Second Salik War…
This review might look familiar to some of you, as I re-read the book and decided to post the review again. I can’t pimp this series enough.
This second book in the series continues with Ia’s story. In the first book, she is a soldier in the Space Force Marines, and now she will train to be an officer in the Space Force Army. Learning to pilot all kinds of space crafts, to give orders, to be everything a good officer needs to be. She has been prepared for this ever since her visions when she was 15.
But first, she gets a three week visit to her home planet, her family and friends. Where she prepares her brothers and mothers for the things to come, and what really needs to be done. She also crafts the tools needed in the future, using the crystal like rocks that grow only on her homeworld. Hard decisions have to be made, and her brothers may not like to do it all, but they will listen and do their best to succeed. As she has foreseen of course. But still, the future is all about free will, and Ia cannot force them.
What Ia did not count on, was a classmate who did not exist in her visions. She likes him, he is cute and fun and very good in his chosen profession. But as she cannot see what happens in the time streams, she tries to stay away from him. Unfortunately, her friend and superior officer, psychiatrist and chaplain Benny forces the two of them to face their problems and attractions. Ia has no time for romance, she knows she will never have a private life or children, so why tempt her with this man? If she really falls in love, he will only distract her from everything that needs to be done to safe the galaxy, or even make her give up her goals altogether.
As fraternizing between cadets is against the rules, they promise to wait until after graduation, and then spend a few days together before going of on their next postings. Ia knows they will not serve together, and a relationship that spans galaxy’s is never going to work. Nor can she afford the distraction. While making love, Meyun Harper triggers her powers, and gets sucked into the timestreams with her. He is resentful of her never giving them a chance, they could have a great life together, he has seen too much. Ia won’t go for that future, as it would mean the end of the whole universe in 300 years. In the end, he does stand behind her in her decisions.
Next, Ia is a Lieutenant second class on a small Blockade Patrol ship, fighting almost daily, and making quick decisions. Her knowledge of all kinds of aliens and their customs is very well used now, and she gains respect among them. For her next goal, she needs her nickname to be well known and feared among the enemy. Foggy spots in the timestreams worry her, she does not know what they mean, but it cannot be good.
I devoured this fairly thick book, 439 pages, in two long sittings. If I did not need to sleep, I would never have stopped reading it.
I love Ia, her determination to safe as many lives as she can, and be a good soldier and officer. Her chosen path is not easy, and she has to ask a lot of herself and her family and friends, but those who share her trust and her vision, stand behind her. Of course there are some fun things as well, like when her little brother wins the biggest jackpot in the galaxy ever, the money that will be needed to fund the rebuilding of her homeworld after the civil war that is coming. The boldness Ia has when addressing some of her superior officers, when she tells them the truth, when they finally find out about her powers and her heritage.
I am in awe of Jean Johnson’s writing voice, as she captivates me and keeps me glued to the pages, needing to find out what happens next, and not wanting the book to end at the same time. I don’t know when the next book will be published, but I saw on Twitter that she is working on the fourth now. I can hardly wait.
These books will stay on my keeper shelf, and will be re-read.
© 2013 Reviews by Aurian