OK, right. At some deeper level of consciousness I would agree with most of Thea’s points (the “Frag” thing was particularly eye-popping) but I ended up not caring about the bad and the ugly because the good was fun: Grimspace for me was, even taking into consideration all of its weak points as Thea pointed out, surprisingly good.
I start reading it and as a fan of Sci-fi movies and TV shows I recognize the much used and tried formula of ” space travel adventures of band of misfits in a run down spaceship who fight against an all-controlling eeeviiiiil government” (as seen in Star Wars and Firefly, for example) and I am a bit wary about it. But Ann Aguirre succeeds in captivating my attention by adding some pretty original elements to it with the whole Jumper – J-Gene thing and with her cool characters. And let’s face it, I AM a sucker for the aforementioned “space travel adventures following a band of misfits”, etc etc and so I had a good time reading it.
I specially love the heroine, Jax even though she is not a lovable character at all. Yeah, I am crazy that way. Jax is selfish, annoyingly smart-mouthed, with rude remarks at the tip of her tongue for everyone, full of one-liners. She is self-centered, with a celebrity complex and who cares about little else than her own pretty little world.
So when she is cut off from the Corp, charged with the murder of everyone on board her last mission including her lover-pilot Kai, with no friends or family she finally gets to have a look at herself and what she sees is not very nice. Even though she doesn’t berate herself for who she is, she starts a journey of self-discovery that will make her more aware of other people and other responsibilities in life. And this for me, was very appealing in Grimspace. That, and the romance aspect of it.
I loved the March and Jax relationship. I was rooting for them from the get go – even though it did seem that March was head over heels in love with Jax far too quick, far too soon but I quite liked the fact that Jax on the other hand, was not very fast in falling in love – she fought it all the way and I thought it was a nice touch by the author, to give her some measure of respect for what she had with Kai, who had died recently.
Their relationship starts uneasy, sparks fly in a mixture of love-hate, fuelled by grief, lust, trust-issues but once they get inside each other’s minds, literally, by connecting in the necessary pilot-jumper symbiosis they are goners. They have some sort of deep in-mind Psi-Jumper connection via the random Theta Waves (which was a bit of an easy explanation, I will admit) but what the heck, they were cute together.
It is a fast-paced, easy read that had me turning the pages and I am definitely picking up the next one in the series. Grimspace is not brilliant and I wouldn’t have it’s babies but I think it shows a lot of potential: I want to learn more about Jax, see where Ann Aguirre is taking her next in her journey of self-discovery and in he relationship with March and what is going to happen in the universe that has come crumbling down at the discovery of the Corps corruption. And I sure hope we get another glimpse of Velith, which was a cool alien but quite possibly the worst Bounty Hunter in the known universe.
Notable quotes/parts: The sci-fi parts are cool but the romance part was my favourite. I love the relationship between March and Jax, how he fell in love hard and fast. And when he goes completely mental in the end when he thinks she is dead? Nice.
Additional Thoughts: A sneak peek of the next book in the series is out:
Verdict: There is a lot of potential in this series so I will keep reading. It may not be to everyone’s tastes but I would give it a go specially if you think you would like a page turning, space adventure with a nice romance to boot.
Rating: 7 very good.