Read Quarter Share
The next morning, I gathered my courage and trammed over to Neris Port. It was one of those perfect, bright, warm days when the soft breezes carried the spicy, tart smell of granapples out of the vineyards and into every corner of the town. The delicate bouquet covered even the hot-circuit board smell of the tram. It made everything seem too cheerful and pleasant. I hated it.
I thought I'd get away from the sword-weilding stuff for a bit and recommend some hard science fiction. I noodled around a bit, stumbled across Quarter Share, and immediately knew I'd made a terrible mistake. The blog has gotten behind schedule because I've been spending too much time reading. You have been warned. The adventures of Ishmael Wang will gobble up your precious, productive time.
I highly recommend this book, but I have trouble explaining why. It is immersive, compelling. It pulls me right in. It's missing most of the elements I usually celebrate on this blog, but it's so good I couldn't put it down. It's the kind of book that makes you tell your friends, "Go read this. Now."
Nathan Lowell's Quarter Share is a coming-of-age story set on a merchant spaceship lugging cargo between the stars. There are no space pirates, no interstellar war. Instead, I found myself completely captivated by a young man trying to find his way in life, thrust into an unfamiliar environment and determined to make it work. Instead of swords and carnage, I was caught up in Ishmael's quest to make a really good urn of coffee, despite a formidable array of obstacles.
I wish I could explain how great this book really is. I have no patience at all for arty, navel-gazing books where nothing happens. This is no pretentious would-be classic. It's just excellent storytelling, captivating and absorbing and thoroughly entertaining. Read it. You'll be glad you did.
Read Quarter Share