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Merchanter's Luck
     

Merchanter's Luck

4.6 3
by C. J. Cherryh
 

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780879977450
Publisher:
DAW
Publication date:
07/01/1982
Series:
Company Wars Series , #4
Product dimensions:
7.00(w) x 5.00(h) x 1.00(d)

Meet the Author

C. J. Cherryh planned to write since the age of ten. When she was older, she learned to use a type writer while triple-majoring in Classics, Latin and Greek. At 33, she signed over her first three books to DAW and has worked with DAW ever since. She can be found at cherryh.com.

C. J. Cherryh planned to write since the age of ten. When she was older, she learned to use a type writer while triple-majoring in Classics, Latin and Greek. At 33, she signed over her first three books to DAW and has worked with DAW ever since. She can be found at cherryh.com.

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Merchanter's Luck (Merchanter #1) 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Sarah_Stegall More than 1 year ago
Think of Han Solo and the Millenium Falcon. Think of Malcolm Reynolds and Firefly. Now make them lonely and reckless and hopeless. Sandor Kreja is pretty much these guys, without the supportive crew/sidekick. All he's got left after the raid that killed his family is his ship, a battered version of the Falcon or Firefly. In the opening chapter, Sandor walks into a bar and falls in love at first sight with the raven-haired Allison Reilly, a Merchanter daughter on leave. A quick roll in the hay only throws fuel on his fire, and he vows to see her at her next port, which is (for his little ship) impossibly far away. For reasons he can't or won't examine, he actually follows through with this, and arrives after staying awake on drugs and nerve through three jumps, to find that he has made himself the center of a lot of unwelcome attention. The rest of the novel is about the lingering echoes of Sandor's family catastrophe, about how something resembling post-traumatic stress disorder can screw with a man's head the rest of his life, and about how hard it is to look past all of these things to find love and trust. It's a book about desperate love. In a few of Cherryh's trademark clipped, condensed paragraphs in the first pages, she paints a picture of a young man on the edge of life, scarred by a horrific tragedy in his youth, eking out a living in the shadow of the big players of Downbelow Station. That novel made a big splash in the early 80s, and I read it, but this story is the one that stuck in my mind for thirty years. I come back to it over and over because of the tone Cherryh puts into it, because of the way she expertly balances the yearning in Sandor against his fear of betrayal, his pride, his survivor's guilt, the secrets and ghosts (metaphorical) that are all he has left. Sandor is a victim who doesn't realize he's a victim, so he behaves like a hero and then is surprised when people say nice things about him. Cherryh's typically compact and evocative prose supports a story which is perhaps too long on Merchanter/Alliance/Union politics and too short on the romance that fuels the story. Even though I was familiar with the referents, I didn't care. They were only window dressing for the real story, the love story. Cherryh set up a good one and didn't quite pull it off; the romance is lower-key than it needs to be to hold up a whole novel. While the ending felt rushed, it still managed to leave me with a feeling that matters had been resolved -- patched together, leaking, limping -- but resolved. It's a very human, realistic ending, not the neat, happily-ever-after ending of the conventional romance. The taut, allusory prose, the simple and straightforward story structure, and the outstanding delineation of a very sympathetic main character make this a standout book, one of Cherryh's best. In the grand tradition of space opera, it swept me off my feet and kept me enthralled over three decades.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago