Thursday, June 27, 2013

Fangirl Summer Review: The Avengers of Carrig by John Brunner








Dell Publishing




Fiction State of Mind-04-01



The roots of my earliest reading were deeply grounded in classic adventure stories and Fantasy books. One day I stumbled across a copy of Asimov’s Science Fiction magazine and my reading world shifted dramatically. Coupled with my Star Wars obsession and my discovery of Star trek repeats, I discovered a whole new world of stories that fostered my interest in science and Science fiction.


Recently I found some amazing paperbacks by masters of Science Fiction at a used book sale. I’ll be sharing reviews of  these books with you guys all summer! I was drawn to this book by the female character on the cover. The image really intrigued me because I personally haven't seen a lot of books from this era (1960’s)  with a female on the cover.

The opening scenes of this book introduce us to Heron, a trader who is bringing in another successful caravan to the city of Carrig. It’s an important time of year in this  city. The first Spring moon brings a contest to see who will rule the city by a King Hunt. The first clan to kill the great beast will rule.

Favored to win this year is Saikmar.   Yet things go horribly wrong as too strangers kill Heron and destroy the great beast with fantastical weapons that none have seen before.


The strangers are pirates. Space travelers that are using their advanced weaponry to strip the world of its resources. They take control of the fledgling society and rule them for a year without interruption.

The pirates don't expect the interference of the Corps Galactia or the fiery Maddalena Santos being sent to the planet to fix the situation.

Maddalena is the cherry on top of an already great read! Considering the book was written in 1969, Brunner has created a very independent and relatable character. Maddalena isn't perfect. She is on shaky ground with the Corps. In her career Maddalena has rubbed a lot of people the wrong way. Maddalena doesn't work well with others,  questions her supervisors and has purely selfish reasons for joining the Corps: for every year of service, she gets ten years added to her life thanks to technology created by the Corps.


When the Corps realizes what is happening on Carrig they hatch a plan to introduce Maddalena into the Carrig society and secretly stop the pirates without revealing her advanced technology to the citizens of the world. It’s a tricky situation and luckily Maddalena crosses paths with Saikmar and is able to subtly guide him to a revolution.

I really enjoyed this book! It was a fast read and had some interesting characters. The Parradile creatures featured on the cover and in the book are very interesting. The Corps had a kind of Star Trek feel to it since they had to be very careful not to interfere with the planets natural development. I’m quite the Brunner fan now and I will be hitting up the used book stores looking for more of his work. It’s wonderful to read these books in their original conditions, its a snapshot of history and enhances the reading experience.

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