Book Review: A Thousand Words for Stranger by Julia E. Czerneda (Four Stars)


Book Review: A Thousand Words for Stranger (Trade Pact Universe #1) by Julia E. Czerneda

(Four Stars)

“What’s been done to you wasn’t to help you. And what was blocked is much worse than losing your past. If you were once so powerful, so gifted— Sira, they’ve blinded and crippled you.” “I don’t feel blind or crippled. I feel sick. And I’m scared.”

Excellent science fiction. A non-Star Wars take on a Force-like power, those who can connect and the muggles. Most told from the point of view of a sort-of human character whose memory and abilities have been blocked. Through the story she must discover not only who she can trust but who she is.

“You have touched the M’hir. Part of our unconscious selves is always there, mingling on some level with all other living Clan, as the air on your ship moves in and out of all our bodies. The M’hir is inseparable from the Clan; it gives us abilities and strengths your species needs machines to accomplish. But the M’hir has also been a curse to some.” (AKA the Force)

Czerneda handled shifting point of view by casting the main story in first person and other characters’ storylines in third. Well done. A dash of humor and romance.

“Morgan’s tanned, regular features assumed the almost angelic innocence I knew signified full-speed plotting.”

Few technical quibbles. Very little science in this science fiction. Most tropes are common to popular SF literature: faster than light travel, artificial gravity, ray-type weaponry. No light sabers.

‘Sira won’t be happy if she finds out she’s killed you.” “I won’t be too happy about that either.”