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Skythane - book review

Skythane (The Oberon Cycle, #1)Skythane by J. Scott Coatsworth
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Skythane reminded me from the very beginning of one of my most beloved sci-fi fantasy series, The Dragonriders of Pern, with the added twist of an Avatar-esque world.

This first book of a three book cycle opens on a strange half-planet called Oberon. No one knows what ripped this planet in half or where the other half of it is. There are stories, myths really, from the first settlers of the planet called the Skythane, humans with wings. The second generation of settlers, Landers, or wingless humans have a definite prejudice against the first generation and the result was an almost genocide of the Skythane. So to say there is bad blood between the Landers and the Skythane is a bit of an understatement.

Add to this mix that the strange half Planet of Oberon is responsible for a rare pyschoamoratic drug called Pith, a criminal Syndicate and a corporation that controls the other rare mineral that comes from this planet, amalite, a mineral that pretty much powers the common worlds, you've got a very tense planet. And then come the natural disasters and the Skythane prophesy of a great cataclysm.

This is what Christianist offworlder Psych Jameson Havercamp steps into the middle of when he comes to investigate the Pith shortage. Or is that really why he was brought in. Obercorp definitely doesn't seem to want him here and from the moment he steps off the interplanetary shuttle he is being hunted, along with his freelance 'guide' Xander Kinnson - a Skythane man with pitch black wings.

What is really happening on Oberon? What is this cataclysm and why the hell does Jameson's back itch so damned much? Everything on this planet is trying to kill him from the corporation, to the seemingly innocent bird population to the planet itself. And if that wasn't enough, there's the attraction that Jameson feels for Xander - awkward to say the least given he has a fiancee waiting for him back home and homosexuality really wasn't looked upon favorably on his home planet... and again he has a fiancee. But life is definitely gonna throw him for a loop.



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