Rating: 3 stars out of 5
It is the year 2275, and though some consider Earth a paradise, for most people on the planet or her outer-world colonies, it’s anything but.
Dex is a Boxie—a genetically engineered human created for the sole purpose of caring for wealthy bio-humans. His best and only friend is an AI cat named Manx, a secret Dex keeps from all around him. While he knows little about his sexuality, he’s attracted to Song.
Song designs ships that traverse deep space and has created the first fully sentient vessel called Fa’a. When he hears of a plot to capture Fa’a for nefarious purposes, Song flees Earth with a small band of misfits. Meanwhile, Dex’s fear of losing Manx drives him to take the cat and escape on a transport.
Song and Dex are brought together by chance. Just as their relationship blossoms from cautious and shy to romantic and erotic, new dangers threaten to destroy not only their love but also Fa’a, their friends, Manx, and all they care about.
I seem to have a thing for space operas lately, even though I usually prefer my sci fi to be set on Earth, without aliens… Anyway, I couldn’t resist the promise of an AI cat. I love cats and the idea of AIs fascinates me.
Sadly, “Song of Song” wasn’t quite as awesome as other books of the genre I’ve read recently. The idea behind the plot was good, but it lost me somewhere along the way.
There were a few things that didn’t make any sense to me. I’m almost tempted to call them plot holes. The leaders of large countries sign a treaty without reading the small print first? That seems horribly unrealistic to me. Another thing that bothered me was the fact that Boxies weren’t allowed to have relationships of any sort (romantic or not) with other people and yet they’re allowed to go to brothels. That seemed rather odd to me.
The idea of a fully sentient spaceship was interesting, but I’m not sure I quite understood how that was supposed to work. My technical understanding is rather lacking, though, so it might just have been me.
And honestly, I would probably find the thought of being inside a fully sentient rather creepy. Fa’a is depicted as omniscient to whatever is going on inside of her. I would probably be too embarrassed to ever undress. So I had a hard time relating to the MCs’ awe of her.
The romance part happened way too fast for my personal liking. Dex was essentially already in love with Song before he even met him. And for Song it was insta-love, even though he had other things to worry about when they first met.
The same goes for the sex. Dex felt like a very innocent character to me. And yet they stumble into bed asap and have amazing, mind blowing sex.
Manx was probably the best part of the story for me. I love pets with a real personality in my stories and an AI cat is the epitome of that. I want an AI cat too. Just so you know.
The troubles were resolved way too easily for my liking. Everything just fell into place easily and what seemed like insurmountable issues before, suddenly turned out to be a simple formality.
Overall, “Song of Song” was just an okay read for me. The concept was promising but the story itself fell a little short. Not a must read, but nice enough.
Cover: The cover by Anne Cain shows Song and Dex. In my mind’s eye, Dex looked a lot younger than he does on the cover. Other than that, I like it. Manx looks really cute.
ebook, 270 pages
Published January 18th 2016 by Dreamspinner Press
ISBN 1623807174 (ISBN13: 9781623807177)