Book Review: The Spare Man by Mary Robinette Kowal (four stars)

Book Review: The Spare Man by Mary Robinette Kowal (four stars)

“Everyone has a secret, and everyone lies.”

The Thin Man does And Then There were None in space. Not science fiction so much as a murder mystery set in on a space cruise liner. Complete with Asta and “copious drinking and flirtatious banter.”

‘On a ship like this, stairs were the unholy love child of Dalí and Escher.’

Some writer finally gets the Coriolis Effect right! Most science fiction ignores it altogether. (extra star)

‘Tesla gave a smile as frozen as the far side of an asteroid.’

Kowal’s least sympathetic protagonist to date. Poor little rich girl. Anyone that rich and that injured would be accompanied by her lawyer, doctor, and personal security. Cocktail recipe chapter openings underscore Tesla as an alcoholic.

‘Her back seized as if each separate screw in her spine had sprouted spikes into the surrounding muscles.’ 

Quibble: Seven years after major accident she should be healed or in traction. Twentieth century medicine. Gratuitous profanity. (lost a star)

“I’m going to smile and nod because I recognize all of those words.”