by Tobias S. Buckell
Cover Artist: Todd Lockwood
Review by Sam Lubell
Tor Hardcover ISBN/ITEM#: 9780765315076
Date: 12 June 2007 List Price $24.95 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Article /
Most science fiction is written from an American or European perspective with green a far more common skin tone than black. But Tobias Buckell writes science fiction with a Caribbean flavor. His second novel, Ragamuffin, is a much more ambitious effort than his first novel – an impressive attempt at full-blown space opera while retaining much of the voice and feel of his Crystal Rain, to which this is a half sequel. From official release/information:
Book Description: The Benevolent Satrapy rule an empire of forty-eight worlds, linked by thousands of wormholes strung throughout the galaxy. Human beings, while technically "free," mostly skulk around the fringes of the Satrapy, struggling to get by. The secretive alien Satraps tightly restrict the technological development of the species under their control. Entire worlds have been placed under interdiction, cut off from the rest of the universe.
Descended from the islanders of lost Earth, the Ragamuffins are pirates and smugglers, plying the lonely spaceways around a dead wormhole. For years, the Satraps have tolerated the Raga, but no longer. Now they have embarked on a campaign of extermination, determined to wipe out the unruly humans once and for all.
But one runaway woman may complicate their plans. Combat enabled, Nashara is more machine than flesh, and she carries inside her a doomsday weapon that could reduce the entire galaxy to chaos. A hunted fugitive, she just wants to get home before she's forced to destroy civilization---and herself.