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Nessa's Thoughts

Just a British girl who reads a bit too much.

Currently reading

The Dead Zone
Stephen King
The Diving Bell And The Butterfly
Jean-Dominique Bauby
Clarissa, or, the History of a Young Lady
Samuel Richardson, Angus Ross
Orange Is the New Black: My Year in a Women's Prison
Piper Kerman
The Cuckoo's Calling
Robert Galbraith

The Edge of Darkness

The Edge of Darkness - Lissa Bilyk (Thanks to Lissa Bilyk over on GoodReads/SmashWords for giving me the opportunity to review this, as well as a collection of short stories.)I very rarely read or watch science fiction. I love the idea of science being so advanced it's like a form of magic, and I'm very excited to see where space, or even time travel goes in my lifetime, but I tend to read more fantasy/young adult fiction/dystopian stuff than science fiction.The Edge of Darkness was brilliant. It's a short story about Max, a female cyborg who is taken as a prisoner of war by a group of aliens known as The Authorities. Her husband is separated from her and goes onto another ship, but they manage to get him back during a visit and then, Max decides to do something when the Authorities discover she's pregnant and want to get rid of her unborn baby.Race is a heavy theme in this story. From the children at school noticing Max's Filipino heritage to the cyborgs being treated as second class citizens with no reproductive or employment rights... Even the captain of the alien ship Max and three thousand other cyborgs are on has a lengthy talk about how the aliens have observed that humans seem to have so much hatred built into them that they start petty fights and wars for no reason, even against their own people, for the slightest difference in colour, creed, whatever.The story is extremely interesting, as the story behind the cyborgs and the aliens and the humans slowly unthreads and it really, really works well. The cyborgs all have computer-like processes, and they're used, ironically enough, as a replacement for robots. Robots only learn what you program into them, after all, whereas half-human half-machines can adapt and learn.The aliens were the biggest problem for me. I don't mind aliens who don't reveal their face (like the rhino thing and the Sontarans in Doctor Who), but as villains, they didn't feel very developed. They're evil and they rule with an iron fist, mercilessly ripping apart any cyborgs who break the rules, but we only get a basic origin story about space travel advancing to Mars and Jupiter's Io moon. I'd just love to see a little bit more about the aliens, you know?The writing, however, is excellent. Lissa Bilyk writes extremely well and creates this world of cyborgs and aliens and human prejudice, and it works wonderfully. Max is a great heroine too, which is why I'm going to give this a 4/5.(This review is also available on my blog: http://book-wyrm.blogspot.co.uk/2012/07/the-edge-of-darkness-by-lissa-bilyk.html)