Grimspace—Ann Aguirre

First time we talked about commitment, he said, "I don't believe in that, Siri. People stay true as long as they want to, regardless of spoken promises or legally imposed obligations. But we're good together, and I want to be with you as long as you want me back." (172)
Part of Vaginal Fantasy Rewind

Grimspace jumper Sirantha Jax has been accused of crashing a Corp ship on purpose, and is subsequently captured by the Corp in order to be interrogated about the incident. She remembers little about the crash, except that she lost her lover and pilot, Kai. Luckily, Sirantha is rescued by a motley crew who are hoping to counter the Corp's squadron of grimspace jumpers with their own independent academy of jumpers; they're counting on Sirantha to help them recruit and train the next generation. Of course, now that they've rescued Sirantha, she's considered a fugitive and the Corp is hot on their trail.

Grimspace was the alt pick during the month when Gabriel's Ghost was the main. It wasn't much of a contest, but this one definitely surpassed Gabriel's Ghost in my mind.

I don't know that I can even articulate what I found so compelling about this book, but I do know that I didn't even stop to write down potential quotes, barely even stopping to bend the edges of two pages with ones I liked. Usually I have a lot of options to choose from when I'm reading. Sometimes it seemed like things happened too quickly and came completely out of nowhere, but for the most part, the pacing suited me well as a reader.

I really like Sirantha. I found her relatable—minus the whole space travel thing, obvs—and completely separated from many stereotypical traits which are common in this genre, particularly with female protagonists. One of the most realistic points for me was when she got overwhelmed with the whole mission and just kind of took off. (I mean, she said good bye to the rest of the crew, but still.) I know that I've certainly been at points in my life where I can't deal with something, and the instinct and inclination to take a break from that particular situation can be overwhelming. She's a strong personality, but she can also feel the pressure, which kept her from falling into Mary Sue territory.

I probably would've had the same issue warming up to March as Sirantha did, even with the little that we know about Kai. The pullquote above is his, and it is clear he is a man after my own heart; that's almost exactly how I feel about relationships and commitment. (Although, to be fair, I am a commitment-phobe, so that may play a factor in my feelings...) But once she did warm up to March, I could see that, too. He was a defender but also allowed himself to be vulnerable and emotional, something that we don't normally see of typical alpha, aggressive males. That was a nice change of pace from some of my recent reads.

Loras' sacrifice was lovely and touching, as I'm sure it was meant to be. Even though I appreciate stories that reflect the reality of death—i.e. actual death versus magical resurrection—I secretly hope that Loras comes back somehow.

Although there wasn't a lot of exposition about the universe that these characters are living in, I didn't feel as though I had come into the series at a weird point, like I did with Gabriel's Ghost. The plot line was much more about the relationships of these characters, and their particular mission, that the setting of that was incidental; it almost could have just as easily taken place in a completely different setting entirely and been essentially the same story. Would I have liked to know a bit more of the minutae? Sure. I'm hoping that some of that will happen as the story continues in further books. But if that doesn't happen, I'll probably still continue reading the series.

One thing I didn't understand was how and/or why relationships seemed to form very quickly. I can understand to an extent how Sirantha and March had such raw emotional attachment, because Sirantha talked a bit about the connection between a jumper and their pilot. But then at the end, when Dina tells Sirantha that she's Dina's best, what? Only because you don't have any other friends, maybe.

I would love to learn more about the whole gang, and will probably pick up the next books in the series when I get a chance. But it's not a series that I feel immediately compelled to continue.

Alright, ten down!! Only 22 more to go.
The ladies didn't really talk much about Grimspace but they DID get very distracted by the Google Effects feature of Hangout during this month, which at that point was brand new. As Bonnie said, I was actually totally fine with the lack of sexy times (although they weren't completely absent) because I enjoyed the story and character building so much.

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