Jane Carter of Earth and the Rescue that Never was

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Jane Carter of Earth and the Rescue that Never Was: A Gunslingers Short Story (Gunslinger Trilogy)

Last Free Dates: 17th Mar 21 to 21st Mar 21
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...An enjoyable short, that plays with sci-fi tropes and leads cleverly into the main novel...

Captured by slavers, xenologist Jane Carter finds herself as the first human to be sold at an intergalactic slave auction. Stripped of everything except her dignity, she is herded out in front of the crowd wishing to be rescued by the only other human who might be here, Sam Kletchka. Unfortunately, he was also supposed to be protecting the convoy that was attacked and sold her out to the slavers when he ran off. When he fails to appear, she is sold for a ridiculous amount of credits. Unable to face her future, she is astonished when she is teleported into a luxurious room, along with all her missing belongings. She is even more surprised to find out that the race that bought her is prepared to free her, instead of using her for all sorted of imagined perverted pleasures. Actually, they are empathic shapeshifters that survive off emotions and, as a human, Jane is a very rich source indeed.

I first noticed this book because of the title, wondering what it was about and when the words “female at alien slave auction” appeared, I wondered what kind of low-brow tract I was about to read. I will admit to being both surprised and amused, both in a good way, by this short story which steered clear of such matter while happily making fun of it in the process. The story is a prequel, but still sets the scene with some brief world-building and setting up future conflict. The characters are well-written, suitably alien and delightfully nonplussed as they try to make each other understand the terms of the agreement they are coming to. The writing style is enjoyable to follow, and giving quick descriptions and keeping the story moving, without being overly dramatic or florid. Reading through I didn’t see any spelling or grammatical errors, or at least any that took me out of reading the story.

As an addition, the first part of the main novel is available at the end of the ebook, so it gives an opportunity to see how the repercussions of this short story start to play out. Also it gives more opportunity to see the writer’s style and decide if it is for you.

An enjoyable short, that plays with sci-fi tropes and leads cleverly into the main novel

Rating: 4
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