Life has been so hectic lately that I have a to-do-list stretching for miles. Unfortunately, that to-do-list is only in my head, which means I forget things, a lot of things. As a result, my posts have been rather erratic, and based on whatever catches my attention at that moment. 😦
Yesterday, I began making amends. Today I want to talk about something close to my heart – a great science fiction novel. Before I begin, however, I have to disclose that Jason Phillip Reeser, the author of ‘Lady in the Lazaretto’, is a friend of mine. I first met Jason on Goodreads, via an R4R [Read 4 Review]. The book in question was The Lazaretto, and you can read my original review here. In my not so humble opinion, Jason is one of the best science fiction writers around.
Right, so when Jason asked me to read the second book in the series I jumped at the chance.
Lady in the Lazaretto is set in the same, grim quarantine world as The Lazaretto, and includes some of the original characters, but the story is completely different, and can be read as a stand-alone novel. That said, I’d strongly recommend reading the Lazaretto first because a) it’s a great story in its own right, and b) it will make reading the Lady a richer experience.
Like book 1, the plot of the Lady is a murder mystery, but the core question you will ask yourself is – ‘who is the Lady?’
Is it Della, the nurse whose memories begin the story?
Or is it the daughter of Kjarsta Zoltis?
Or is it perhaps Lilly, the woman Gregor Lepov loves but cannot commit to?
Or is it the woman referred to only as The Liar?
Or could it be Major Sun Uijong, the woman sent to make reparations to the survivors of the Lost Platoon who were marooned on the Lazaretto, and all but forgotten by their not so grateful government?
In unravelling the identity of the Lady, the author takes us on a thrilling but complex journey that weaves the past into the present.
In some ways, I enjoyed the Lady even more than the first book in the series because it delves deeper into the character of Gregor Lepov, and I love knowing what makes interesting characters ‘tick’. But, of course, Lepov is only one of the characters you will get to know and love. Lieutenant Ed MacNally is another, as is Della, a childless woman who grows to love her young charge with as much fierce protectiveness as any biological mother.
The Lady ticked all the right boxes for me, and I really do recommend it very highly. This is science fiction at its best, and I was honoured to write the tagline for it. Of course I had no idea I was writing a ‘tagline’ until I came across this post on Yvonne Hertzberger’s blog this morning:
The post explains the difference between loglines [book blurbs to us plebs], and taglines. If you look at the cover of the Lady below, you will what I mean.
I can’t tell you how proud I am to be associated with the Lady.