Escape Velocity by Victor Manibo

Story


Pros: compelling, fast paced, interesting characters

Cons: abusive dom/sub scene

The Rochford Institute is hosting their class of 2064 reunion on Space Habitat Altaire. As an added bonus, attending will net each participant at least 5 MERIT points, necessary to gain coveted spaces in the new Mars colony. Unlike her classmates, Ava Khan isn’t there to schmooze. She wants to know who really killed her abusive twin brother their last year of school, and she thinks her three oldest friends have the answer. Meanwhile, the station crew have a plan for how to make the world a better place.

The story is told from the alternating perspectives of the four friends and Cielo, chief housekeeper on the Altaire. You learn more about each one, how things went in school, what they’ve been up, and why they’re really on the station. They’ve all got compelling stories, even if – despite what they think – they’re not particularly good people.

The book delves into the kinds of backroom deals that allow the super rich to influence the world and come out on top.

There’s an orgy scene (mildly graphic) and one character acts as Dom to another, in which a lot of minimizing language and swear words are used. The second scene with that pair went past words, and though it wasn’t graphic, it still left me feeling uncomfortable.

The ending hits hard and wasn’t what I was expecting. It’s a fast paced, compelling read.

Out May 16.

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