#8220;"In the Lion’s Mouth”
Tor; 304 pages, $25.99
Michael Flynn continues his space opera series around the adventures of Donovan buigh — no typo; these characters often speak Gaelactic — and his former employers, the Confederation of Central Worlds. His daughter, the master harper Mearana, had hoped to reconcile him with her mother, a Hound of the League, one Bridget ban, but Donovan’s gone missing … kidnapped by Ravn Olafdsdottr, who shows up at Clanthompson Hall to tell the story of her interactions with Donovan.
Continuing the rich, cheery, grim density of the two previous novels in the series, “The January Dancer” and “Up Jim River,” Flynn shuttles us from Bridget ban’s estate to the ship where Donovan, in all his many personae, is captive, to conferences between operatives of the Confederation and the United League of the Periphery, to odd planets where some differences are … worked out. In engagingly violent ways. Flynn plays joyfully with more than one language, but even in straight English: “One no more despises an enemy than the knife despises the whetstone.” (I found that net searches for some of the Gaelic terms helped me appreciate more of the humor here and in the first two books).
There’s spying and thieving and politicking, both clean and not-so, and rifts in the bureaucracies that think they run this part of the Spiral Arm … and, as we are reminded often enough, it’s a big Spiral Arm. Certainly big enough for this lovely series, and, by the way, the ending does seem to leave room for a sequel, now that Donovan has more or less reintegrated all the characters who live in his head.
Jim Hopper, of Normal Heights, sometimes has trouble
enough with the single character in his head.
"Rich, cheery, grim density." "Engagingly violent." Interesting comments. Not many books display cheering grimness or engaging violence. And he hasn't laid eyes on ON THE RAZOR'S EDGE yet.