ELITE. PARAMILITARY. FORCE. PROTECTION. RELIGION. SHRINES. MOUNTAINS.
What do these words say to you? What images to they conjure, what pictures do they paint? If it’s a fun romp through the perspective of an elite fighting force as they try to protect shrines and people from themselves while in mountainous terrain–you’d be wrong.
If it’s a serious look into the quagmire that is the human psyche when forced to choose between loyalty to your country and loyalty to your people and your god–you’d be wrong again.
Wow you’re not very good at this are you?
In fact, this book takes all of that and says, “Fuck everyone else’s idea of science fiction. Screw deeper meaning. I’m going to be the first book to show these Science Fiction sheep what it’s REALLY all about!”
Here’s how the book progresses:
1. Salli, a member of an elite paramilitary force entrusted with the task of protecting their religious shrines, is the best on her team. She knows it because she keeps complaining that although she’s The Best her mentor keeps making her work harder than everyone else.
2. Salli’s brother runs away after the accidental death of a tourist. He is now a deserter, presumably taken by the other religious faction on the planet. (oh noes)
3. SHE MUST FIND HIM AND TELL HIM THAT HE WON’T LIKELY BE PROSECUTED. PROBABLY. I MEAN, SHE KNOWS HE’S INNOCENT.
4. Oh, right. To find him she has to become a deserter herself. Woe is she!
5. She finds him after being caught by his ragtag group while she thought she was hidden. So much for her Elite Skillz™.
6. They convince her to go on some religious walk and she meets the messiah. Who makes her go all squishy inside.
7. She’s in love! (with the messiah. But then again who isn’t?)
8. I stop reading, as I’ve lost the desire to work for good and have gone off to further my newest hobby: kitten-smashing.
Best quote from the book:
And Meeka had embraced their thought; or at least they had embraced Meeka, and he seemed to feel that their view of the world and his accorded miraculously well with one another.