Shadow Run by AdriAnne Strickland and Michael Miller
Published by Delacorte Press on March 21, 2017
Genres: Young Adult, Fiction, Science Fiction, Fantasy, Space, LGBTQIA+
Pages: 400 Format: Hardcover Source: Library
Nev has just joined the crew of the starship Kaitan Heritage as the cargo loader. His captain, Qole, is the youngest-ever person to command her own ship, but she brooks no argument from her crew of orphans, fugitives, and con men. Nev can’t resist her, even if her ship is an antique.
As for Nev, he’s a prince, in hiding on the ship. He believes Qole holds the key to changing galactic civilization, and when her cooperation proves difficult to obtain, Nev resolves to get her to his home planet by any means necessary.
But before they know it, a rival royal family is after Qole too, and they’re more interested in stealing her abilities than in keeping her alive.
Nev’s mission to manipulate Qole becomes one to save her, and to survive, she’ll have to trust her would-be kidnapper. He may be royalty, but Qole is discovering a deep reservoir of power–and stars have mercy on whoever tries to hurt her ship or her crew.
When I saw the comp to Firefly I knew this was a must read! AdriAnne Strickland and Michael Miller were not messing around as they crafted this unique galaxy with rogue royals, political unravelings, mysterious substances, and a crew bursting with heart. Shadow Run was everything I wanted with just a little more for good measure and it even inspired me to start plotting my own stories again.
If all this book gave me was crew like those on the Kaitan Heritage, I would have been a happy camper. There’s Qole, the captain and epic pilot, that has Shadow pulsing in her blood and new recruit Nev with his secret mission as prince of the region. Then there’s Arjan; Qole’s brother, also skilled with flying, Telu; the sassy hacker, and Eton; the muscle. Rounding them out is Basra, by far my fave; the gender fluid merchant who may be hiding more than anyone.
The dynamics between all of them were spectacular; from protective to violent, observant to passionate. Everything you’d expect from a family of sorts. Plus both the narrators, Qole and Nev, go through huge emotional transformations. From learning more about the effects of Shadow to discovering family flaws and trying to figure each other out in the process. I honestly could read about these characters forever.
Despite dropping the reader right in the middle of things, the authors seamlessly brought this universe to life. From planets like Alaxax, frigid and brutal, to Shadow, an energy that can be harvested from space, there’s so much worldbuilding to latch onto and immerse oneself in. As the story unfolded, so too did this world, and I couldn’t get enough of all the politics, planets, and people in play.
Overall Shadow Run by AdriAnne Strickland and Michael Miller was an absolute roller coaster of a book. Fast paced, emotional, with plenty of action at every turn. Plus the characters jumped off the page and quickly found a way into my heart. There were moments of confusion piecing together the history and background but that didn’t stop me from falling in love with this story. I highly recommend this one!
So has Shadow Run piqued your interest? Do you have a favorite ship or crew from science fiction? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!