Friday, February 16, 2018

Book #Review - Honor Among Thieves by Rachel Caine, Ann Aguirre #YALit #SyFy

Series: Honors # 1
Format: E-Book, 480 pages
Release Date: February 13, 2018
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Source: Edelweiss
Genre: Young Adult / Science Fiction

The first book in a daring new sci-fi series from New York Times bestselling authors Rachel Caine and Ann Aguirre! In Earth’s distant future, a savvy young criminal is recruited to join the Honors space program, which sends humans into the far reaches of the galaxy aboard sentient spaceships called the Leviathan, only to discover that dangerous secrets are hidden amongst the stars.
Zara Cole has been in and out of New Detroit’s rehab facilities for treatment of her antisocial disorder. There’s no adjusting Zara’s attitude, though. A painful past has made her stronger than most, which is why she chose life in the Zone instead moving with her family to Mars. In her eyes, living inside a dome isn’t much better than a prison cell.
Still, when Zara commits a crime that has her running scared, jail might be exactly where she’s headed. Instead, Zara is recruited into the Honors, an elite team of humans selected by the Leviathan—a race of sentient alien ships—to explore the outer reaches of the universe as their passengers.Zara seizes the chance to flee Earth’s dangers, but when she meets Nadim, the alien ship she’s assigned to along with fellow Honor Beatriz, Zara starts to feel at home for the first time, along with a devotion she’s never experienced before. Yet nothing—not her Honors training or her street smarts—could have prepared her for the dark, ominous truths that lurk behind the alluring glitter of starlight.

Honor Among Thieves is the first installment in co-authors Rachel Caine and Ann Aguirre's Honors series. Set in a distant future (2142) where 100 years before, Aliens called Leviathans arrived in time to save the crew of the International Space Station from certain death. Since arriving, Leviathans have solved lots of problems for humankind. It gave humanity cleaner water, food, & great leaps in medical advancements. In return, the Leviathans require 100 volunteers a year to ride along with a cultural and scientific exchange. 

Zara Cole is the main protagonist for this story. Zara lives in New Detroit, the Lower 8, where she is basically a thief who steals in order to survive. While her own mother and sister have made a new life for themselves on Mars, Zara has absolutely no desire to live in any paradise. After stealing from the wrong man with a long reach, and trying to hide out in a last chance facility, Zara is shockingly chosen to be one of the 100 volunteers for this years crop. She is also the youngest ever chosen which in itself is remarkably curious to the point where you begin to search for Easter Eggs that will explain why Zara was really chosen.

Meanwhile, there is another character who is just as important to the story and just as likable. Nadim is one of the Leviathans who is looking forward to completing its mission so that it can go on its own Journey like others before it. But, Nadim has met his match with Zara. Zara has the ability to connect with her alien ship Nadim on an emotional level. The more comfortable they are with each other, the more certain boundaries that are supposed to exist between them begin to fall away. 

The more dangerous the mission becomes, the more Nadim, Zara, and Beatrix, an Honor from Brazil, becomes glued together in a united front against unlikely distractions. Some will call this the romance angle of the story. Ick! Sorry, not going to jump on that stage. As the team grows closer, they are even more determined to complete a successful mission so that they are not replaced.  

Strong and unreservedly rebellious, Zara is a complex heroine that readers will love to root for as she fights for her one chance at safety. Yes, these books take place mostly in outer space. And yes, some of the main characters are aliens. But the world building and writing are very accessible, with a story fast paced and supported by well-drawn relationships, which will appeal to mainstream readers as well as genre-based fans. Fast-paced prose, sparkling characters, and unique details that bring the imagined futuristic world to life make for a gripping adventure that will appeal to both avid sci-fi fans and readers new to the genre. 


  1. OOh nice! I was keeping this one on my wishlist for the time being but the more I hear about it, the more I think it won't be there long! Sounds like it might be an interesting read! Glad you enjoyed it too! Nice review!

  2. Enjoyed your review and it does sound like a good one.
    sherry @ fundinmental