84 points, 4 ¼ stars
Damia and Afra-Raven-Lyon had reared their children in a brilliant and unorthodox way. All their young had been ‘paired’ when six months old with the furry, one-eyed Mrdinis, the only other sentient beings in the Alliance, who could communicate with humans by their ‘dream messages’. Together, Man and Mrdini worked to create prosperous worlds and guard against the terrible threat of the annihilating Hivers.
And now, in the deeps of Space, Mrdini scouts had crossed the path of three Hive ships — ships that were giant hulks of cell units, bearing the queens and workers out into space, to breed and multiply and destroy wherever they found a viable planet.
It was the four elder children of Damia — Laria, Thian, Rojer and Zara — all uniquely talented in their various ways, who were to play their part, helped by their life-long Dini friends, in the conquering and investigation of the Alien threat of the Hivers.
It is what you do that concerns us and you may not retaliate in that fashion no matter what the provocation!
I was happy with Damia’s Children, but I feel like with every book further in this series, I stray further from the greatness that was the series opening. This book takes place about fifteen years after the ending to Damia, as her children start to grow up and move away from home and become working members of FT&T and Primes in their own right.
Damia’s Children is much more fractured than the previous two books. It focuses on several of Damia’s children as they grow up and spread out to their different jobs and different roles.
Yet there is also a huge focus on the alien race we encountered at the end of the previous book. The Dini have been paired with Damia’s children. They have formed connections, they know each other deeply. This connection is really weird but really cute, as well. And through their connection with the Dini, the lives of Damia’s children take root.
One of their children, Laria, goes to the Dini Homeworld. She is there to operate their Tower as well as be a sort of ambassador and translator and cultural liaison. Another of their children, Thian, is dispatched to the space fleet tracking down the Hive motherworld which attacked Deneb. He goes as a civilian consultant, to help smooth over miscommunication between the Human and Dini fleets. Rojer eventually joins Thian with the fleet. And Zara, (who doesn’t have much of a plot in this book, really), takes a different path.
There is another interesting social, moral, and ethical dilemma that is presented in Damia’s Children that I quite like to explore the depths of. There is a giant focus to track down the Hive homeworld, but the question is what are they going to do when they get there. The Dini, who have been attacked for centuries by the Hive, are all set on wiping out the Hive, “for the good of all”. The humans, being human, are wondering about the ethics and morality of this argument. And if they aren’t going to wipe out the Hive, what are they going to do?
The writing.. it isn’t that the writing is bad or anything. Yeah it’s slow, but being fast isn’t the point of these books. It is just that the end sucks. All three of the “endings” for this book, because there are three kids that are the primary focus of the book. Their story goes until it can go no further and just cuts off and moves to the next book.
The ending just isn’t an ending. The first book was billed on this being a trilogy. Only, this isn’t a trilogy. It is like the third book in the trilogy got too long and got split up into three books. The book just arbitrarily cuts off when it got too long. Nothing is solved, there is no climax. The story just kept going on and on until it couldn’t any longer.
This doesn’t bode well.