This review may contain some spoilers.
A well paced, entertaining science fiction adventure. Lacuna boasts a strong female lead, an engaging premise, and decent world building, but the book staggers in some curious design choices.
Captain Liao can let her emotions get the best of her, but sometimes trusting her heart and her gut can yield greater results than following military procedure to the letter. Yet she’s rigid where she needs to be, precise, cold and calculated when necessary. To make captain, as a Chinese lady, she’s been fighting her way to the top of the ladder for her entire life. Against the battle fire of the Toralli alien army, she may prove to be the one immovable object in the galaxy.
Author David Adams’ world is fascinating, and he generously raises the stakes, and keeps the twists and turns coming. Lacuna is at its best when humanity is on the edge of a crumbling cliff, Earth’s few hulking battleships the last line of defense in a black, star filled world. The book is at its weakest when it plays for humor and not always succeeds.
Summer Rowe, a scientific adviser placed on board Captain Liao’s ship, is so inconceivably unprofessional that I don’t believe my imagination could have been suspended any further. She flies the flag for comic relief in an otherwise largely serious science fiction affair, but ultimately fails. Her popular culture references may draw laughs from sci-fi fans but it was a step too much for this reader. I’d go as far to say that she is the one glaring false note in the novel. Toned down, she would have been far more digestible.
My one other cause for annoyance was the author’s decision to switch character names while delivering dialogue. First names at times being replaced by surnames, or nicknames. I’m a stickler for consistency. However, gripes aside, Lacuna packs a punch on the action front, and delivers a satisfying conclusion. If you love science fiction, you’ll find something to enjoy in this wild ride.
This is just one opinion. If you’ve read the book, why not leave your own rating below?
* High stakes