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2ndWaveI have read Acorna’s Children: Second Wave by Anne McCaffrey and Elizabeth Ann Scarborough, and I do not approve – I can’t even fathom what readership this was written for, never mind who would enjoy this book. For die-hard fans only.

Note – you might have gathered that this book did not agree with me, that I didn't like it, and can guess that the subsequent bits displaying my opinions might not be entirely positive. If you're a fan of this series you might not want to read on – any offence taken is entirely your doing from hereon.

Acorna and Aari have contracted a mutation of the space plague they were fighting, and have been quarantined, whilst Khorii, their daughter (and the only Linyarii who can see the plague…) now leads the fight in their stead. And she appears to be winning, more and more planets are plague-free again, even if just occupied by the elderly and the very young, both of which can’t /couldn’t contract the plague. But why are there strange movements in the graveyards? Why do people see their dead beloved return in the night? And who is the ‘mutant’ that the ‘Friends’ (shapeshifters with rather top notch tech, including time travel) and the ‘Others’ (Unicorns, in a nutshell) supervise and indoctrinate as she grows up? Believe it or not, there’s more adventure ahead.

If that sounded corny, superficial, and confusing, then that’s a good representation of the book.
Firstly, though, I have to admit that I haven’t read any of the other books in the series, nor the first series (Acorna). And, telling from this book, I’m glad I haven’t. Because it’s rubbish, in a nutshell.

Ok, what’s wrong with it, in your correspondent's not so humble opinion? This is some kind of soap opera, with amateurish and stilted dialogue, cliché-ridden and hackeneyed plot, evidently part of some extensive, multi-threaded, interminable ‘story’ or universe. There seems to be an endless supply of contrived set-pieces (mainly insufficiently developed, motivated, or even described – but somehow twee – aliens, in all shapes and forms), with a rather discerning lack of interesting detail or any depth.
It evidently is written as some kind of serial adventure story, but I can’t fathom who the target audience could be, or who would enjoy this complicated but one-dimensional book. This comes across as pure throwaway, with silly names (Elviiz? Roadkill?), a non-flowing story that randomly jerks along, and very little to recommend it.

I’m used to better fare from Anne McCaffrey, the ‘Queen of Fantasy SF’ (no idea about E A Scarborough, I haven’t read any of her books), but this is dire. For die-hard fans only.

Title: Second Wave
Series: Acorna’s Children
Series Number: 2
Author: Anne McCaffrey
Author: Elizabeth Ann Scarborough
Reviewer: Markus
Reviewer URL:
Publisher:  Corgi/Transworld
Publisher URL:
Publication Date: 2007
Review Date: 17 September 2007
ISBN: 9780552155373
Price: UKP 6.99
Pages: 412

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