City of Shattered Light

Tantor. Dec. 2021. 1,318p. $29.99. ISBN 9781666153569.
Gr 9 Up–Riven is a gun-slinging smuggler living in Requiem. Working for a syndicate, she steals and cashes in on bounties for the matriarch. Her dream is to climb up the underworld hierarchy. When an operation goes south thanks to a fellow bounty hunter, Riven and her crew find themselves in hot water. To survive, they have to find a bounty that will quickly rake in $20,000. Asa, heiress to a technological tycoon, lives a rigidly controlled life. When her father uploads her rebellious sister’s mind into an experimental reprogramming simulation, Asa steals the canister with her digitized mind and escapes. Her trip is cut short, however, when she crash-lands on Requiem. A botched kidnapping causes Riven and Asa’s paths to cross. Battling artificial intelligences, vengeful bounty hunters, and Asa’s father’s many connections, the two must find a way to solve both of their problems. Will they succeed? Narrator Sarah Beth Pfeifer expertly uses unique voices to bring the complex characters to life. Her narration matches pace with the story. The plot is well developed, engaging, and action packed. Worldbuilding is well done and draws readers into Riven’s and Asa’s complicated lives. LGBTQIA+ characters are well represented in the cued white cast.
VERDICT A must-listen for fans of science fiction, swashbuckling fiction, and adventure. Recommended for most library collections.

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