Endurance by S. L. Viehl

This is Stardoc book 3 (I seem to be on a space opera kick), and this time Cherijo Veil is under the control of slavers. As she usually does, Cherijo uses her skills as a surgeon to help everyone that needs medical attention, saving many lives and often making life harder for herself to do so.

I don't think this review is spoilerific but may allude to things that could be spoilers. So if you want to know NOTHING, don't keep reading, my vox doesn't have LJ cuts.

 

{possible spoilers below}

Cherijo's mental state seems different from books 1 and 2 – she believes she was betrayed, and this makes her very very grouchy throughout the book (at least to me). There was a fine line between defiance and stupidity and sometimes Cherijo crosses it, needlessly provoking the prison guards and not allowing people to protect her. Sometimes this was frustrating to read. Cherijo also the reason the people around her are enslaved, but she feels as if she's even with them for what they did. I think most of them didn't have much choice, so I thought Cherijo was seeing things a little bit too black and white. Of course, others see things in a similar black and white way and want Cherijo dead for what has happened. Cherijo does manage to convert some people but not others. The usual addictive high action drama occurs.

This was a overall an OK read for me, but I preferred book 1 out of all these so far and book 3 the least. The second half of the book was better than the first, but I don't understand why her friend Alunthri was added to the story. His being there seemed very forced in order to make Cherijo even angrier about her betrayal. I think her attitude of bullheaded defiance throughout the book, not really trusting or looking at things from other people's points of view was beginning to wear thin on me. Basically because she's brilliant she is always right (ha) - often naturally taking the role of a leader and hard to sway once her mind is made. It is even harder for others to get her to do what they say just to keep her alive. They are forced to great lengths to save her. I'd like to see how much her attitude changes in book 4. I hope she learns some lessons about trust instead of dragging out a tense situation. Meanwhile, one of the best parts of the book was when Cherijo goes deep into her subconscious, I think this is part of a much larger, very interesting story arc which I'd like to read more about. Another good thing in this book which is something it has in common with others – is the humanizing of the "bad guys" – not everyone is put into a tidy slot and there are facets to their personality – some of the slavers are terrible, while others turn out to be very honorable.

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