Enjoyable mashup of space opera, first contact science fiction and a sort-of romance. Well-conceived and well-told. Even though starting a new series of books in her existing “universe” of stories, Reher made Tangle a discrete whole with a sufficient and satisfying conclusion. (That in itself is not a given.)
Skipping, jumping, hopping through subspace has been a standard SF short cut—literally as well as literary—for decades. Reher explores the “what if” of subspace being inhabited. What might they be like? How might we encounter them? How might it impact our universe to interact with a being who exists mostly as a quantum soul (my word, not Reher’s)? (How does it happen to appear as the beauty on the cover?)
The backstory is standard space opera with a galactic union (empire, commonwealth, whatever), rebels, pirates and all the usual suspects. This universe is inhabited by a variety of species, some of which group around a common “prime” pattern. Despite that, the technology seems late twenty-first century. Reher develops her variations on the themes in a satisfactory manner.
More important to me: Reher tends to get her science right. If you read or watch much science fiction, you’ll know that most authors and screen writers flunked high school physics. Not Chris Reher. Her stuff is right, even if weird. And isn’t that why we read science fiction?
A fun read.