Friday, August 28, 2015

Power lines by Anne McCaffrey and Elizabeth Ann Scarborough

Power lines is the second book in the Petaybee trilogy so this review contains ***SPOILERS*** if you have not read the first book in the series.  This series is best enjoyed in order so I suggest you read Powers that be before you read any more of this review.

Yana Maddock may now be a true citizen of Petaybee, accepted by the planet itself, but that does not mean that she is free of the influence of the company that terraformed the planet and placed all of the human inhabitants on it's surface.  There is resounding doubt that the planet is sentient, and of course the company must send experts to examine the truth of the bald statement themselves.  As in any situation, there are those who would turn the events to their own advantages, taking what they can claim for themselves.  It also brings so called experts to Petaybee - some of whom will twist and turn the truth to their own needs.

In a rapidly changing world, Yana must walk the line between the company and the citizens of Petaybee who are remarkably innocent in the ways of the universe.  On the surface the arrival of Marmion de Revers Algemeine and Dr. Matthew Luzon seems like good news, but both of them have a reputation - not necessarily a good one.  While Marmion seems to take to Petaybee and fall under its charms, Luzon is determined to prove the inhabitants are suffering from some kind of mass delusion that makes them dangerous rather than endearing.  With a whole planet at stake, the inhabitants of Petaybee will have to find a way to convince Intergal that their planet is not only sentient - it has it's own ideas about what should happen to it's surface and it's inhabitants.

Power lines is in the unenviable position of the being the middle book in a series that carries some rather strong themes and messages - which makes it a little stodgy in some places and a little fast paced in others.  I jumped straight into reading Power lines after finishing Powers that be, with the plan to jump straight into Power play when I was finished, so the effect was less pronounced for me than it would be for someone who was reading the books with a gap in between.  Once again there are strong messages about the environment and the damage we can do taking what we want, and some of the other reviews I have seen of this book state that for them as readers the message was rather heavy handed.  As someone who makes an effort to reduce, reuse, recycle - and who has respect for all of our environment and the species in it, - I actually found the messages to be just right.

As events unfold in Power lines it becomes clear who the major players will be in the final book in the series, and it sets us up quite nicely to move into the last book in the series.  This is one of the outlying series from Anne McCaffrey who is best known for her blended fantasy/science fiction series of the Dragonriders of Pern.  I did love this series and there is a lot to like about it - you just have to make sure you read it in it's own right rather than hoping for another series like Pern.

If you like this book then try:
  • The crystal singer by Anne McCaffrey
  • The ship who sang by Anne McCaffrey
  • Decision at Doona by Anne McCaffrey
  • The Rowan by Anne McCaffrey
  • Werehunter by Mercedes Lackey
  • The elvenbane by Andre Norton and Mercedes Lackey
  • Dragonsong by Anne McCaffrey
  • Arrows of the Queen by Mercedes Lackey
  • Alien taste by Wen Spencer
  • The diamond throne by David Eddings
  • Sassinak by Anne McCaffrey and Elizabeth Moon

Reviewed by Brilla

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