Present Tension

Present Tension - Fletcher DeLancey Capt. Janeway and Lynne, the unwitting hitchhiker she picked up in space, become a couple already at the end of the first book. I wondered how the author would sustain reader interest for the rest of the series. Would she tear them apart? send them on another bizarre space adventure? introduce another couple? Turns out it's a little of everything. And at just the right dose for a perfect balance of action, drama and angst.

Book 1 is a tough act to follow. But Book 2 surpasses it, imho. Think Star Wars vs Empire Strikes Back.

I love how the author developed Janeway and Lynne's characters and relationship. In the first book, it was all about trust. Lynne's Choice at the end of the first book's bizzarro finale settled that once and for all. Now the Captain wants to take their relationship to the next level but its the usual U-haul dilemma--when should she pop the question? Before they can settle their commitment issues, our heroines are dropped into a heart-stopping, life and death situation where they will be forced to 'cross a line that can't be uncrossed'. More drama, ethical dilemmas, and a bonus--a mysterious character with a dark past.

And the freak temporal displacement (time travel thingy) from the end of Book 1 finally makes sense. It sets up an entire chain of events (an alternate timeline or an altered timeline?--me thinks its the latter) that sets the premise for the rest of the series. Superb plotting!

Last but not the least, I can't believe I have more to say about the intimate scenes--it's just this side of risque. Not at all something you'd expect in a serious sci-fi book. Definitely no skipping. :)

P.S. In a nod to the TV series subtext that launched a thousand J/7 fanfics, the author doesn't forget Seven's special place in Janeway's heart.