by Janet Edwards
Cover Artist: Nicole Sommer-Lecht
Review by Mel Jacob
Pyr Hardcover ISBN/ITEM#: 9781633880924
Date: 08 September 2015 List Price $17.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK
Janet Edward's Earth Light continues the story of Jarra Tell Morrath, a Handicapped inhabitant of Earth, forever denied the ability to traverse space because of an immune defect. This YA novel follows Jarra as she struggles to regain her place on the Alien Contact team, However, someone is determined to eliminate her, permanently.
When groups from Earth spread throughout the galaxy, they traveled via portals instead of old-fashioned space ships. However, a certain percentage of people cannot use the portals. These were called Handicapped and had to remain on Earth. Any children born with the immune disorder were raised on Earth, usually as orphans.
Despite Jarra's handicap, she longed for space. When the alien probe was discovered, she, along with her partner Fian, a norm, was assigned to the effort. Together, they make first contact with an alien ship and manage to communicate. The response, however cryptic, sent shock waves through all the worlds. Now, the two young people are the key to further communication with the alien probe.
One consequence of Jarra's actions was that the Tell clan wanted to recognize her as a clan member. Until now, settlers on other worlds had preferred to forget the Handicapped and considered them closer to animals rather than as humans equal to themselves. That proposal precipitated a major political upset throughout the various Earth colonies and caused extremist to attack Jarra.
Jarra's adventurous upbringing made her resilient and able to defend herself. However, she is still young and her ability to see connections and solve problems that none of the adult have answers to may cause some readers to question this.
Determined to overcome occasional setbacks and increasingly dangerous attacks, Jarra survives and faces the ultimate challenge to save the far-flung descendants of Earth from the worst enemy they have ever faced.
YA readers will enjoy this action adventure tale of distant worlds and alien threats. Edwards next book will have a ready audience whether it is a new Jarra adventure or something entirely different.