Contact, by Susan Grant

>> Monday, December 23, 2002

On Sunday, I read Contact, by Susan Grant. After all the brou-ha-ha (sp?) about Wal-mart censorship, I just had to buy it new. It was worth it B+.

Plot summary:

"United Airlines pilot Jordan Cady is promoted to captain when her 747 is captured en route to Hawaii and her captain dies from a heart attack. With the events of September 11 still fresh in her mind, Jordan initially believes the aircraft has been hijacked by terrorists, but she soon realizes that they've been pulled into the maw of an alien spaceship. Grant's "aliens" look and act human, but they speak Key, the official language of the "Alliance," and possess loads of Star Trek-like gadgets. Using a high-tech translator, Kào, the scarred son of the ship's commander, reluctantly informs Jordan and her passengers that a comet has destroyed Earth. While Jordan sees to the comfort of her crew, she battles an ever increasing attraction to Kào, who has demons of his own to purge. Their romance plays out against the backdrop of the war between the Alliance and the Talagars, a race of amoral humans, which makes for an explosive finish. "
The plot itself was fabulous. I found everything fascinating... seeing how the hi-jacking was handled, how the new society developed, the interactions with the aliens, etc. The world-building could have been a little better, though. There were many things that were like in Earth (like in the US, actually) which could have been different. And there were detail, like Kào automatically answering in Earth years when Jordan asked him his age. It didn't completely throw me out of the story, but it was a shame that more effort wasn't put into this area.

Jordan and Kào were great characters: Jordan a really kick-ass but still feminine woman and Kào a lovely wounded, tortured hero, who didn't torture others simply because he was tortured himself. But I just felt something was lacking in their interactions. Their falling in love was a bit too sudden for my taste.

The adventure part was fun, and the action sequences very well written. I did distrust Ilya Moray from the beginning, but this part of the book was fine

I had a problem with the ending, which I felt was too rushed. I would have loved to see more of the adjusting to Earth Kào had to do, and what the repercussions were, and all that. Also how Kào and Jordan interacted when not under stress.

I still enjoyed the story, and will continue to read Grant's books.

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