Disclaimer: I am friends with the majority of the authors in this collection. I won my hardcopy in a raffle basket supporting an academic scholarship.

This science-fiction romance collection was an excellent summer read. The stories themselves were a mixed bag for me, with a few being stand-outs.

Favorite Stories

“The Pirates and the Pacifist” by Cara McKinnon is one of this author’s only forays into science-fiction, and now I want more of it! Her story combined (multiple) world-building, political intrigue, and very sexy romance into a fun story. The homage to Firefly is obvious without being too similar, and I would happily read the further adventures of the crew of the Varuna.

I also had a blast with “Breathless” by L.J. Longo. Her narrower focus under the surface of a colonized planet mixed military action with pure science-fiction delight of discovery. Her two heroes were an odd couple that I believed in immediately, and their adventure enthralled me from the very beginning.

Story I Want to See as a Novel

K.W. Taylor’s “Reprogramming” has so much potential to be expanded into a full-length novel. What I got in this collection was more than satisfying as a short story, but this simple story of a marooned traveler and her android leaves so much room for further development. As it stands, the story is a good length that feels complete, but that doesn’t stop me from wanting so much more to this tale.

Rating: 4 (out of 5) stars. Cross-posted to Goodreads.

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