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Dreamspy by Jacqueline Lichtenberg

Cover art by William O'Connor

Published by Benbella Books

Reviewed by Leigh Kimmel

Kyllikki is an exile, driven from her homeland by a political dispute. She is also an exile from her chosen work, for the two great cultures of the galaxy, the Teleod and the Metaji Empire, use fundamentally incompatible methods of handling telepathy. For a person trained in one discipline to accidentally stumble into the workings of those operating in the other can be deadly.

Fortunately for Kyllikki, she proved able to be retrained in the sound-based techniques of her new home. However, due to the danger involved in any mixing of the two disciplines, she has had to agree to bind herself by terrible oaths never, ever, to use the visual-based techniques of the other side under any circumstances. Even so, she is still regarded with distrust as a turncoat by many.

And then hot war breaks out between the two nations, and Kyllikki is suddenly caught on the wrong side of the border. Worse, a friend has been injured, and the peculiarities of his biochemistry necessitate a desperate trip to the worlds of his own people, lest his reawakening go terribly wrong.

Fans of Lichtenberg's Sime~Gen series will enjoy this exploration of space opera tropes through the lens of Lichtenberg's favorite themes and issues.

Review posted December 15, 2008

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