Author: Angel Martinez
Publisher: Mischief Corner Books
Genre: F/F Science Fiction
Part of the “A Holiday to Remember 2017 Series”
As a security officer on an interspecies ship, Growlan Raskli’s experienced in heading off species-specific aberrant behaviors in order to keep the peace. But when her captain asks her to find out what’s bothering their sole human crew member, Raskli’s out of her depths. She hardly knows anything about humans and she’s not a psych doctor.
Something’s definitely upset Human Jen, something to do with human holidays. The more time Raskli spends studying humans and interacting with the intriguing Human Jen, the more personal the assignment becomes. Determined to lift the dark cloud from Human Jen, Raskli will do whatever it takes—within safe parameters, of course.
Growlan Raskli is the security officer on an interspecies ship and has dealt with and been trained in many scenarios to keep the peace amongst the crew, however, she may be facing her toughest one yet. She is to find out what is bothering their sold human crew member and prepare a proposal for how to solve it! So, Raskli chooses to spend time with Human Jen to sort this out which then makes her mission more…personal, although she is also committed to do so within safe parameters! And naturally, the story is told from Raskli’s point of view.
Another wonderful story from the amazing imagination of Angel Martinez! And easily another favorite of mine for the year! Not only do you have all these species working together on a ship, who are identified by their species before their name (Oolob Blub; Kteket Tse; Mmnem Nnep; Piwip Twill, Ebret Ko and Qi and Oolong Glik to name a few), for the most part, everyone gets along, works together well and are quite practical. Which makes the scene of discussing their research of human holidays particularly funny because when you hear some of the traditions described from an observer viewpoint, well, some of them do sound downright peculiar! We likely need more formal safety protocols for the holidays!
What I really enjoyed about the story though, was the heart of it, not only between Raskli and Jen as they have “friending dates”, but also with the balance of the crew. They are all quite willing to help out with this celebration for Jen and maybe they all needed it just as much as she did? And how the relationship between Raskli and Jen develops, managing to be both sweet and sexy at the same time. I read this quite fast because I did not want to put it down, it pulled me in so much.
If you like different holiday stories, and Angel always manages to write some amazing spec fic or science fiction holiday stories, I highly recommend this story. The story manages to combine heart, humor, a bit of snark and procedure and for me, still reflect a meaningful point of the season being about spending it with people you care about and the joy of doing something unexpected for someone else. It just takes place in a different setting than most holiday stories, which makes it even more poignant.