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Steal Across the Sky: A book by Nancy Kress

2 Ratings: 2.5
What Did the Atoners Do to Humanity?
1 review about Steal Across the Sky: A book by Nancy Kress

Travel with Witnesses to Other Planets to Learn What Was Taken From Humanity

  • Sep 21, 2009
  • by
Rating:
+4

This book starts out like a dynamo and then fizzles about halfway through.  A group of individuals are selected by aliens called “the Atoners” to travel to other planets in the Universe to act as witnesses for the Earth.  Apparently, the Atoners had visited Earth several thousand years ago and had done something to humanity.  The witnesses will be able to determine exactly what happened by visiting these remote planets.

 

The first half of the book focuses on three individuals; Cam, Lucca and Soledad.  Cam and Lucca visited two sister planets while Soledad guides them from space.  Lucca’s planet seems to be inhabited by a bunch of wandering nomads, while Cam happens on a warlike planet.  Lucca is injured in his landing and the nomads take him with them as part of their group.  Meanwhile an evil king wants Cam dead and sends his emissary, Aveo to capture her.  Cam and Lucca’s tales are highly intriguing and I could have given the book five stars.  However, once they learn what the Atoners had done, the second half of the book focuses on the three on Earth after they have returned months later.  The author then introduces another of the witnesses, Frank, who is on a religious mission to make the Atoners give back to mankind what they had stolen.

 

The second half of the book drags and has none of the real intrigue of the first half.  Even with the author interspersed cute advertisements from the future and other little tidbits like memos from the President, the book is not saved from being painfully difficult to finish.  By the time the  ultimate resolution with the Atoners is reached the reader doesn’t care anymore.

 

A better book would have been to expand the tale of Cam and Lucca on their respective planets and possibly rewrite the second half of the book as a sequel.

Steal Across the Sky

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