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Children of Scarabaeus

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Sara Creasy burst onto the sf scene with Song of Scarabaeus—prompting Publishers Weekly to praise her as, “a significant new talent,” and her novel as, “a brilliantly conceived debut,” in a starred rave review. With Children of Scarabaeus she returns us to her boldly imagined universe for another ingenious blending of rich characterization, breathtaking science fiction adv Sara Creasy burst onto the sf scene with Song of Scarabaeus—prompting Publishers Weekly to praise her as, “a significant new talent,” and her novel as, “a brilliantly conceived debut,” in a starred rave review. With Children of Scarabaeus she returns us to her boldly imagined universe for another ingenious blending of rich characterization, breathtaking science fiction adventure, fascinating speculation, and engrossing romance in the vein of Linnea Sinclair and Ann Aguirre. Children of Scarabaeus cements Creasy’s reputation as one of sf’s most exciting new practitioners—as cypherteck Edie Sha’nim and her bodyguard lover Finn uncover an insidious scheme by the tyrannical Crib empire that involves the enslavement of children and the destruction of worlds.  


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Sara Creasy burst onto the sf scene with Song of Scarabaeus—prompting Publishers Weekly to praise her as, “a significant new talent,” and her novel as, “a brilliantly conceived debut,” in a starred rave review. With Children of Scarabaeus she returns us to her boldly imagined universe for another ingenious blending of rich characterization, breathtaking science fiction adv Sara Creasy burst onto the sf scene with Song of Scarabaeus—prompting Publishers Weekly to praise her as, “a significant new talent,” and her novel as, “a brilliantly conceived debut,” in a starred rave review. With Children of Scarabaeus she returns us to her boldly imagined universe for another ingenious blending of rich characterization, breathtaking science fiction adventure, fascinating speculation, and engrossing romance in the vein of Linnea Sinclair and Ann Aguirre. Children of Scarabaeus cements Creasy’s reputation as one of sf’s most exciting new practitioners—as cypherteck Edie Sha’nim and her bodyguard lover Finn uncover an insidious scheme by the tyrannical Crib empire that involves the enslavement of children and the destruction of worlds.  

30 review for Children of Scarabaeus

  1. 4 out of 5

    new_user

    Children of Scarabaeus ultimately fails to deliver more than a sequel. Song of Scarabaeus fans enjoy the resolution to Song's cliffhanger and following teckie Edie Sha'nim and ex-slave Finn's continuing struggle for self-determination and freedom against a Crib government finding her too valuable and him too expendable. Both lifelong pawns, they must escape and find a purpose together. Only UF and SF genres allow a "couple" to entertain the notion of separation so frequently or engage such gray c Children of Scarabaeus ultimately fails to deliver more than a sequel. Song of Scarabaeus fans enjoy the resolution to Song's cliffhanger and following teckie Edie Sha'nim and ex-slave Finn's continuing struggle for self-determination and freedom against a Crib government finding her too valuable and him too expendable. Both lifelong pawns, they must escape and find a purpose together. Only UF and SF genres allow a "couple" to entertain the notion of separation so frequently or engage such gray characters, both strengths of Children, but while Children does raise some thought-provoking ethical dilemmas with ease, a sequel cannot simply stretch material from the original. Children should have engaged the audience with new questions and experiences. Yet we don't learn more about Edie and Finn. Edie repeats her complaints from Song ad nauseum, "I'm used, I'm used, I just want to live my own life," and we discover that no, Finn is not a mystery revealed in the sequel, he is just that friggin' lifeless. We don't learn anything about him, and saddest of all, he remains the pawn he was in Song all throughout Children. He's never his own character, and we continue to see him only through Edie's microsecond exchanges with him. If Song did not delve into character histories, however, her charm lay in the new perspectives she continually offered on her cast. Are they good or bad? Children, lackey that she is, just parrots the party line. Again and again she attaches the same descriptors to her characters: "Achaiah, evil one second, generous the next." We never really get a new lens on anyone. That was the biggest disappointment. Villain Natesa remains the shrill monkey on Edie's back, and she never changes. Nothing's new, not a setting or character. If they had been, the boring initial chapters of summary, internal dialogue and shipside puttering would have been easily dismissed, even Edie's romantic hand-wringing. Song introduced a world of dubious motives, military bureaucracy and contracts, violence, and a futuristic Monsanto-like government. Children tied up loose ends. It could have been so much more. Definitely read the first book though.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Katyana

    ***3.5*** Well, I liked it more than I thought I was going to. I think the key here was low expectations. There's a quote from Finn that I find to be particularly appropriate, when thinking about what I wanted from this series: "I wish I could take you home with me," he said. "Just ... home. Someplace where you don't feel used or hunted, where you don't feel like you have to save the galaxy, or someone else's kids, or even me. I want to know who you are when it's just you and me." (p283) Me too, ***3.5*** Well, I liked it more than I thought I was going to. I think the key here was low expectations. There's a quote from Finn that I find to be particularly appropriate, when thinking about what I wanted from this series: "I wish I could take you home with me," he said. "Just ... home. Someplace where you don't feel used or hunted, where you don't feel like you have to save the galaxy, or someone else's kids, or even me. I want to know who you are when it's just you and me." (p283) Me too, Finn. Me too. Here's the thing. The first book was fabulous - terrific world-building, a compelling situation, beautiful storytelling. We didn't have much opportunity to get to know Finn and Edie though. That was okay, because things were crazy hectic, and it worked out for the story. But at the end of book 1, they were free. And I was desperately looking forward to the next stage. Whether it was fighting a war in the Fringe, or just negotiating with Fringe planets to free their BRATs, or whatever they did, I wanted to be out from under the situation where Edie and Finn are basically hostages, with Finn used as leverage to make Edie behave. Because I wanted to learn who they really were, and I wanted to watch them interact when they weren't forced to play nice because their survival depended on each other. Which made this book disappointing. It begins with their immediate recapture by Crib, and their situation is pretty much identical to the first book - the only difference is that their captors are the Crib, and their chief tormentor is Natesa (a character that I have to say I truly, truly do not understand... more on that in a minute). But Finn's survival depends on Edie's good behavior, and any relationship is forced to dance around this core obstacle. It felt like we were retreading the story from the first book, with very little actual forward movement. And the villain was frankly baffling to me. I just did not get Natesa. Her actions seemed inconsistent to me, as if Creasy couldn't decide whether Natesa was motivated by some kind of (admittedly dysfunctional) maternal feelings towards Edie, or whether she was just a megalomaniac. At times she seemed to be hurt by Edie's perception of her. This was actually interesting to me, and I wish Creasy had pursued that direction. (view spoiler)[Had Natesa never meant Edie harm, had loved her in the only way she knew how, was truly baffled and heartbroken at Edie's rejection of her... that would have been interesting. What if she hadn't been responsible for all the stuff Edie blamed her for? The book at times seems to toy with the idea that Edie's paranoia on that front is a bit extreme... but then at the end, that whole idea is tossed out the window when we find about the secret detonator. Yup, she really is as evil and bitchy and controlling as Edie thought. And just like that, she becomes a boring, 2-dimensional, mustache-twirling villain. It is too bad, because I think that there could have been a much bigger emotional impact had she actually loved Edie in her own, fucked up way. And Pris was her attempt to do it right. (hide spoiler)] Ah well. That said, I thought the last third or so of the book pulled together a satisfying conclusion (though I admit I was all set to light the book on fire if (view spoiler)[Edie really merged with Haller/Scarabaeus, sacrificing herself yet again for the greater good. (hide spoiler)] I have to admit, I found Edie's martyr complex to be a bit tedious in this book.) I liked the stuff on Scarabaeus, and I liked the resolution. I just wish there was a third book. I still want to see the story I was expecting here - Edie and Finn on their own, not under anyone else's control or agenda, living lives of their choice. I want to see how they fit together when they aren't forced together. Ah well.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Felicia

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. This is the sequel that has been hanging on my Kindle for a while, couldn't get myself to dive in, but once I started I couldn't put it down. Definitely don't pick this up without reading #1 as it's almost a continuous thing from the end of the last to this one. I really loved the world and the abilities the main character Edie has. I think the whole "seeding" thing was really well-done as well, and the plot paid off in the sequel. The main bad woman was kind of 2-dimensional, but whatever, I th This is the sequel that has been hanging on my Kindle for a while, couldn't get myself to dive in, but once I started I couldn't put it down. Definitely don't pick this up without reading #1 as it's almost a continuous thing from the end of the last to this one. I really loved the world and the abilities the main character Edie has. I think the whole "seeding" thing was really well-done as well, and the plot paid off in the sequel. The main bad woman was kind of 2-dimensional, but whatever, I think this was a really enjoyable, light, sci-fi book. SLIGHT SPOILER: I would give this book overall 4 stars, and the romance a 3 1/2. Why? Because there was SUCH amazing tension in book 1 and 1/3 of book two, and then when these two finally get the sexing on it's the LEAST ROMANTIC SCENE EVER. I mean, there was so much potential to see the ROMANCE there, I felt like it was pretty underwritten, and then once they were together it wasn't really mined for all the awesome stuff that was there before they consummated everything. The last part together was good, it was just the middle of the book felt like there were some character beats missed. Other than that, really enjoyed their characters finally finding middle ground. Def would pick up books by this author in the future!

  4. 4 out of 5

    Keertana

    The irony is not lost on me that I began this series because it was a duology and am ending it now wishing it was one of those never-ending, seven-and-counting UF Series. If only. Nevertheless, with just two books, Sara Creasy has managed to make me a life-long fan. Although this series can very easily be extended, in some ways, I'm glad my journey with Edie and Finn is ending here. I'd much rather have two books of utter perfection than six of mere average standing. As such, I find myself final The irony is not lost on me that I began this series because it was a duology and am ending it now wishing it was one of those never-ending, seven-and-counting UF Series. If only. Nevertheless, with just two books, Sara Creasy has managed to make me a life-long fan. Although this series can very easily be extended, in some ways, I'm glad my journey with Edie and Finn is ending here. I'd much rather have two books of utter perfection than six of mere average standing. As such, I find myself finally saying - as I have not had the pleasure of saying for most of the series that I finish - that Children of Scarabaeus is a heart-stopping, action-packed, and utterly satisfying conclusion to an unforgettable duology. Children of Scarabaeus picks up directly where Song of Scarabaeus ended, only this time, Edie swiftly finds herself back under control of the Crib. Now, back under the thumb of Natesa with the leash between herself and Finn still very present, Edie has nowhere to run. As such, she is forced to begin work on Project Ardra, the plan that will somehow enable advanced planets to be controlled by the Crib. Yet, as Edie begins to realize, Natesa's dream project has more flaws than can be controlled. Natesa is dependent on Project Ardra in order to keep her career, though, and even more people are concerned with Scarabaeus, the planet Edie herself has been tinkering with. In a game of politics where Edie's life is not her own and her existence as a human is barely acknowledged in favor of her talents, Edie must find a way to free herself, Finn, and the world they live in - or die trying. As with its predecessor, Children of Scarabaeus is a page-turner. It seems as if Edie and Finn can never catch a breath or even a spare moment of time together, for both are rare and far-between. Yet, as a finale, Children of Scarabaeus succeeds in tying up all loose ends successfully. Each and every decision taken by Edie and Finn brings them closer to a solution and the clever manner in which everything is brought around to a full circle is the epitome of satisfying. Children of Scarabaeus still manages to introduce us to new characters, each of which make their place in our hearts, but Edie and Finn still steal the show - every time. Even the plot twists, although not wholly unexpected, are surprising and the depth of world-building, of creativity, and of knowledge that Creasy demonstrates of her world continues to be astonishing. Yet, what Children of Scarabaeus excels in is the sexual tension still very prevalent between our two main leads. Although we were introduced to the rough past of both Edie and Finn in Song of Scarabaeus, this installment brings forth a larger understanding of these two. Now, Edie finds herself face-to-face with people from Finn's past - Saeth, like him - and she must acknowledge the fact that once the leash is cut, Finn may no longer want to remain by her side. What makes Edie such a compelling heroine, to me at least, is the fact that she is so strong, but so vulnerable too. Edie lacks the physical prowess that marks the kick-ass protagonists of novels such as Kate Daniels or Mercy Thompson. Instead, she reminds me more of Chess Putnam from the Downside Ghosts Series - intelligent, cunning, and used for her unique talents, but ultimately still alone at the end of the day. For Edie, Finn is a life-line of sorts; proof that someone out there cares what becomes of her and, perhaps even more, trusts her. As such, the emotional upheaval that Edie faces throughout multiple scenarios in this novel tore my heart, merely because she feels to very real to me. Although I will admit that I hoped the romance in this installment would be slightly steamier, I am overall not disappointed in the least. If anything, I am continually surprised that Creasy steers clear of drama and instead imbues her writing with careful subtleties, never fully spelling out the depth of connection between these two lovers, but rather showing us and allowing us to infer on from there. Finn and Edie have come a long way since they first met and even more, their relationship has solidified into one of ultimate faith. Working together, side-by-side, both of these have managed to find equal footing in their relationship. Song of Scarabaeus revealed their imbalances, with Finn at the will and mercy of Edie, but Child of Scarabaeus proves just how much these two mean to one another when their lives aren't being controlled and when, at last, they have some modicum of free will. It is true that I am desperate for more of Finn and Edie, to see how their relationship evolves in the future, but they've left off at such a strong, realistic end, that I'd rather just leave the rest to my imagination. Children of Scarabaeus is a sequel that is equally as strong as its predecessor, that cannot be denied. With such a tight, well-formed plot line and subtle, but deeply felt romance, it can't go wrong. Yet, there were a few small issues that irked me as I read through this installment. For one, I was ever-so-slightly disappointed by the black-and-white characterization of the villains. Natesa, though proving to have a few shades of gray, was not entirely convincing as a character with more than simple surface depth. For a woman who played such a large role in this novel, I still remained utterly convinced of her evil intentions. Granted, this issue never took away from my enjoyment of the novel, but it makes me reflect upon the sacrifices Creasy has made in ensuring this series is a duology. As I said before, there is room for a sequel and even in this installment, I don't doubt that Creasy could have very easily split Children of Scarabaeus into two books, allowing for a trilogy instead. Yet, it is hard to say whether Book 2 would have fallen into MBS in that case. Although I wanted a few instances to be taken slower, for even more depth to be infused into the main characters, for a larger understanding of the future of this realm, I am unable to distinguish how much of this is my own yearning for information on a series I love or whether I genuinely felt the loss of these traits in this novel. I suspect it is the former and not the latter, but it seemed worth mentioning. Creasy's debut series is a duology - and it works well as a duology. It never seems contrived, rushed, or flawed in any way, and I suspect that as a trilogy, it might have seemed too forced. Nevertheless, I cannot help but wish this book were longer, if only to prolong my time with these characters, if only to add more insight into the villains, if only to paint an even deeper image of this futuristic world in my brain. If only. As John Green would say, though, "...the world is not a wish-granting factory." Thus, in the way only a greedy human can be, I am content with what I have been given. Although it has been quite a few years since Creasy has published another novel, I retain hope that she will write another series, just as good - if not better - than this one. I know, for certain, that I will be the first one in line if she does. Honestly, this series is just that good. You can read this review and more on my blog, Ivy Book Bindings.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Laura Lulu

    Maybe I just had high expectations because the first book was so great, but I found this one pretty lacking. It was very slow getting into it, it took me days to read the first 100 pages, and I actually nodded off a couple times reading it. Not a good sign. I felt the tech speak was a bit too much in this one, I'm not a skimmer, so when I start skimming, I know it's TMI. I think so much of my disappointment in this book has to do with the characters. I expected to learn a lot more about them, pers Maybe I just had high expectations because the first book was so great, but I found this one pretty lacking. It was very slow getting into it, it took me days to read the first 100 pages, and I actually nodded off a couple times reading it. Not a good sign. I felt the tech speak was a bit too much in this one, I'm not a skimmer, so when I start skimming, I know it's TMI. I think so much of my disappointment in this book has to do with the characters. I expected to learn a lot more about them, personally and emotionally, but no such luck. Edie would show a teensy smidgey iota of romantic angst, and then just go back to the old song and dance about how she is so sick of being used, and she just wants her own life. And poor Finn--I want to like the man, I really do. Again, throughout this entire book, no matter that he's obviously majorly skilled and an ass kicker to boot, he's still used as a disposable pawn to keep Edie in line. I wanted to learn more about him, I figured we were given the silent, stoic, full of secrets Finn in the 1st book, and we'd get to see a bit into his mind & maybe his soul in this book. But nope--Finn just seemed like a cyborg throughout the book. I'm a big fan of stoic, but this isn't stoic, it's robotic. And the much awaited sex scene was, no pun intended, anti-climactic. For all the shit that these two have been through together, for all the drama and life-threatening situations that have forged a bond between them, is it asking too much to see a bit of soul? I guess we were just supposed to be content with the fact that Finn still stuck around even after the leash bomb was disabled. Ooooh, how romantic. And it's not even that I'm a huge romance novel fan, cause I'm not. But when characters bond and form such a strong attraction and loyalty to each other, I need more than actions. Yes, even if they do speak louder than words. So, not a horrible book, but a disappointing, lackluster sequel.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Brenda

    I loved this one. I so wish there was more to this series, but it looks like not. Edie and Finn are great characters, and I really liked their romance. I also liked that it was very understated and wasn't the main point of the story. There was a lot of action and excitement here, and even if I couldn't always picture what was going on (I'm not very science-minded), I still enjoyed every bit of the story. I hope this author writes more because I will definitely read it. I loved this one. I so wish there was more to this series, but it looks like not. Edie and Finn are great characters, and I really liked their romance. I also liked that it was very understated and wasn't the main point of the story. There was a lot of action and excitement here, and even if I couldn't always picture what was going on (I'm not very science-minded), I still enjoyed every bit of the story. I hope this author writes more because I will definitely read it.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Pygmy

    The continuation of Song of Scarabeaus. Reads well, though I have to say, I was a bit bummed that they went through so much to escape in the first book, only to get stuck with the Evil Scientists yet again for the majority of this second book. I also can quibble that no new major characters were introduced that were particularly memorable. I would've liked to see...say, one of the Crib military soldiers show more than just little flashes of decency, and actually have an admirable and strong pers The continuation of Song of Scarabeaus. Reads well, though I have to say, I was a bit bummed that they went through so much to escape in the first book, only to get stuck with the Evil Scientists yet again for the majority of this second book. I also can quibble that no new major characters were introduced that were particularly memorable. I would've liked to see...say, one of the Crib military soldiers show more than just little flashes of decency, and actually have an admirable and strong personality with the skills to match. I mean, come on, Finn, can't be the only stud in the galaxy! Otherwise, still a nice and enjoyable read. Build-up is good, what characters that are there fill out the story nicely, and the author's writing style is solid and unobtrusive. What's better, the romance does NOT overpower the sci-fi plot, and does not delve into excessive details. yay!

  8. 4 out of 5

    Lyssa

    The sequel is not as good as the original but I still really enjoyed the story. Overall this series was too short and needed more in depth world building. I had no idea where any of the planets were in relation to Earth or even what solar system. I will still highly recommend for an original science fiction story/concept with cool characters.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Nicole

    Joint review with Has originally posted here: http://thebookpushers.com/2011/04/27/... Publisher: Avon Publish Date: Out Now! How we got this book: NetGalley MinnChica: In 2010 I did a Sci Fi Romance challenge and was introduced to the Scarabaeus Series. I’ve been anxiously awaiting the 2nd book in the series, and was not disappointed at all! This book should DEFINITELY be read after the Song of Scarabaeus (you WILL be lost if you only read the 2nd book.) Has: I heard of Song of Scarabaeus but heard Joint review with Has originally posted here: http://thebookpushers.com/2011/04/27/... Publisher: Avon Publish Date: Out Now! How we got this book: NetGalley MinnChica: In 2010 I did a Sci Fi Romance challenge and was introduced to the Scarabaeus Series. I’ve been anxiously awaiting the 2nd book in the series, and was not disappointed at all! This book should DEFINITELY be read after the Song of Scarabaeus (you WILL be lost if you only read the 2nd book.) Has: I heard of Song of Scarabaeus but heard it featured pretty hard scifi elements that made me wary of picking it up — although I really love scifi romance. (I am a huge fan of the Grimspace and the Alien series by Gini Koch). But after hearing so much good things about it, I got the first book and I have to say it was fantastic read. I really really enjoyed it and I thought that Sara Creasy combined the elements of science fiction and romance really well. So I jumped on the chance to get the second book, and I’m glad I did! MinnChica: Both books in the series are really great reads. We pick up in Children of Scarabaeus almost exactly where we left off, and Edie and Finn are still trying desperately to get the information in Finn’s brain to the Fringe worlds. Their mission is thwarted by The Crib and now they must find a way to escape their captors, complete their mission, and now potentially save a group of children from Edie’s home world. When they return to Scarabaeus, Edie is amazed at the way the planet has morphed all on it’s own, and realized that Scarabaeus might hold the key to solving all their problems. Creasy does a wonderful job of combining the great romantic tension we’ve come to expect from our romance books, along with a mixture of both hard and soft Science Fiction elements. Has: I totally agree. While the first book really concentrated on the world-building and establishing the characters, this book really focused on the romance and the characters as well as their repercussions of their choices in the 1st book. MinnChica: Yes, and I have to say I think I enjoyed this book a little more because of that. I loved getting a closer look into the romance between Edie and Finn. The characters were really strong in this one, almost more so than the first. I was hoping for an Edie and Finn HEA, and was somewhat worried it wouldn’t happen. There was a time there at the end when I thought Edie was ready to give up everything. The way Finn swooped in and wouldn’t let her go, oh… I totally melted. I was very happy with the way Creasy ended the book. It was really well done. Has: Yeah, the first book really was a taster of their romance. But this one really showed how much they have grown closer to each other compared to the unwilling allies when they first met. I loved how intense Finn was; he had quiet but lethal approach to it. I thought he was one of the best heroes I have read about in a while. I really rooted for them to get together and the fact they were so determined to BE together despite the hindrance of outside and inner forces added tension to the romance. I think this book really cemented their romance and I know this is the last book in the series, I really hope there is more in the future especially about them. I was really drawn to their romance. MinnChica: Exactly! I think Finn is one of my favorite heroes. I also loved the addition of new characters in this book, specifically the kids. The innocence they had, the way they approached the technology, the way they looked to Edie and Finn as parental figures. So good! Has: Oh definitely. And they added lightness and humour too which was needed because this book had higher stakes for the characters and even the universe. MinnChica: Very true. I also liked the way that Scarabaeus changed, especially given the events of the end of the first book. It was a neat and interesting spin, and I was completely drawn into the story and engrossed in each and every turn! Has: The pace was great and I never got lost or felt that the story stalled in any way. I also loved the descriptions of how much Scarabaeus changed and evolved. When they returned to the planet, the descriptions of the lifeforms and wildlife felt so vivid and epic and alienesque. MinnChica: It really was. That is one of my favorite aspects of this book, how imaginative Creasy is, how descriptive she gets with the planets and the technology. I do have to say though, this series is not for the light sci fi reader. Creasy gets very detailed about technology and the science behind everything. There were times when I felt a little lost and confused in the story. It was still very enjoyable, but complicated at times. Creasy can, at times, make me feel like an idiot! =) Has: I am not keen on hard scifi partly due to those reasons (I tried to get through Kim Robinson’s Mars trilogy and could barely get through the 1st book). But I found that overall that the tech side of the story wasn’t as overwhelming or as technical as I thought it would be — although I felt the same as you in a few scenes. Nonetheless, Creasy captured both sides of scifi and Romance in an engaging way, and I don’t think fans of both genres would be unhappy with the Scarabaeus books. The world/setting and the characters sucked me in and I was sad to say goodbye when I clicked onto the last page in my ereader. I really wanted more! MinnChica: I want more as well, however I think Creasy has said that there won’t be anymore books in this series. I wonder if she can be bribed with chocolate, or pie, or cookies? All in all, I was very happy with Children of Scarabaeus. Although the science was a little much for me at times, the story moved quickly and in a way that was engaging and exciting to read. The romance sparked and sizzled and really drew me into the characters. I can only hope that Creasy will continue to write more wonderful Science Fiction Romance. I give Children of Scarabaeus a B+. Has: Can we start a campaign? :D I’ll donate even if Creasy wont write another book in this world. I will definitely be getting her next book. In fact I think because of her lush descriptive writing and multi-layered characters I will have put her firmly in my autobuy list. I highly recommend Children of Scarabaeus. I was swept up with the story and the romance with Finn and Edie. It was a pure joy to read. Even if you’re not a fan of the sci fi genre, I definitely think this duology will be enjoyable and memorable to romance fans. It’s a very good thing when a book leaves you wanting more. I also give Children of Scarabaeus a B+

  10. 4 out of 5

    Cece

    I try to resist rating books I haven’t finished because it doesn’t feel “fair” to the story in some inexplicable way, but I’m making an exception here. I wanted to give these books a second chance and I was hopeful that this final part of the duology would rectify the issues I had with Song of Scarabaeus. Spoiler alert: no sign of that!! In the first 100 pages, we learn about more abducted native children, but this book frames their abductions as a beneficial bargain for the native community: th I try to resist rating books I haven’t finished because it doesn’t feel “fair” to the story in some inexplicable way, but I’m making an exception here. I wanted to give these books a second chance and I was hopeful that this final part of the duology would rectify the issues I had with Song of Scarabaeus. Spoiler alert: no sign of that!! In the first 100 pages, we learn about more abducted native children, but this book frames their abductions as a beneficial bargain for the native community: the indigenous stand-ins have happily sold their own children to the colonizers, so they could terraform their poisoned forest, which is land that the colonizers previously stole and subsequently destroyed. I thought it couldn’t get any worse, but apparently it can.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Jessica

    Terraforming SF dystopia with a dash of romance. I bought this the day it was released, set it aside to aavor having it for a while before reading... and somehow a decade passed before I actually read it. I don't know why I do things like that but I'm glad I finally got to it. CW: violence, death of named characters, kissing Terraforming SF dystopia with a dash of romance. I bought this the day it was released, set it aside to aavor having it for a while before reading... and somehow a decade passed before I actually read it. I don't know why I do things like that but I'm glad I finally got to it. CW: violence, death of named characters, kissing

  12. 4 out of 5

    Angie

    I was literally salivating with my need to get a hold of this book as soon as was humanly possible after finishing Sara Creasy's wonderful Song of Scarabaeus. Then I remembered that I'd seen it on NetGalley not so very long ago, and I ripped right over there to see if it was still available. It was. I requested it and waited impatiently for a response. The minute it was approved, I downloaded it to my nook and sat back in contentment. Oh, wait. That's right. I work. And have a million other thin I was literally salivating with my need to get a hold of this book as soon as was humanly possible after finishing Sara Creasy's wonderful Song of Scarabaeus. Then I remembered that I'd seen it on NetGalley not so very long ago, and I ripped right over there to see if it was still available. It was. I requested it and waited impatiently for a response. The minute it was approved, I downloaded it to my nook and sat back in contentment. Oh, wait. That's right. I work. And have a million other things I have to get done within a single twenty-four hour period. However, since this pregnancy has rendered me and sleep mortal enemies, my nights at least are free. Always a silver lining, right? That's right. I'm a glass is half full sort of girl. Pay no attention to the sound of my husband's laughter in the background. He doesn't know. The point is, I finally had the all-important sequel in my hands, and all was right with the world. At least with my world. Edie Sha'nim appears to drag catastrophe (and uber-controlling, wannabe despots) wherever she goes. On their way to help the Fringe worlds get out from under the thumb of the omnipresent Crib empire, Edie and Finn (and their meager crew) are re-captured by the very woman Edie's been trying to escape since she was ten years old. Natesa is determined to keep Edie and her powerful abilities under lock and key. And that includes keeping her away from other interested parties, particularly other Crib and/or military individuals who believe Edie's singular talents would be put to better use back on Scarabaeus itself, figuring out what went wrong in the first place and what exactly is evolving now on its treacherous terrain. But Natesa's control extends only so far, especially as the work on her precious Project Ardra isn't exactly thriving. The further Edie delves into the details of the project, the more she realizes just how badly the project is foundering. And, with her control slipping and her professional reputation on the line, Natesa will do anything she can to collar Edie. Including separating her from Finn and any other influence she deems antithetical to her goals. Determined to set Finn free from the leash that binds them and the grasping fingers of the Crib, Edie must decide where to place her loyalties and which devil to serve. I slipped into this one with absolutely no trouble at all. Part of that was, of course, that it had only been a few days since I finished the first book. But a larger part is due to Sara Creasy's wonderfully sure sense of setting and character. The world is vast but consistent, the characters familiar and compelling. Edie and Finn had an immediate stranglehold on my attention and my emotions were high and riveted for the duration of the book. I'll go ahead and say that it's a palpable relief to read a duology. They're all but extinct these days it seems, and I can't tell you how relieving it was to go in knowing the tale would not stretch on for eons, that the author had an ending and a way of getting there in mind. That said, I would read more about these two and their world in a heartbeat. The unusual and vital relationship that evolves between this cypherteck and her rebel-turned-bodyguard launched my heart into my throat with each scene they shared. It was meaningful and based on trust, as opposed to hurried and based on lust. I enjoyed the two of them so much and looked forward to anytime they were allowed to be alone and just talk to each other, which, naturally, was a rare occurrence indeed, what with everyone and their dog hell bent on destroying whatever Edie holds dear and any hope of freedom Finn ever had. I admire restraint in storytelling, and this series is an excellent example of such. It could so easily have shoved over into melodrama and pure spectacle, but it never does. One scene, in particular, struck me as marvelously well done. The reader expects a certain outcome, and is instead handed a much more subtler version of the truth. It served to enhance the connection between characters, rather than exploit the moment. I loved it. I felt I knew them based on their choices, which were always dire. But they made the decisions, they didn't waver, and the ending offered up hope and resolution in an effortless package. Color me satisfied. I can't wait to see what Ms. Creasy has to offer us next.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Shelley

    Rating: 3.5 stars Genre: Science Fiction/Romance Children of Scarabaeus, by Sara Creasy, is the sequel to Song of Scarabaeus and it appears that it is also the last book of the duology. This story picks up shortly after Edie Sha’nim, bodyguard Finn, and Cat Lancer escaped from Scarabaeus. Edie is a top notch cypherteck who has the ability to manipulate the ecology of evolving planets that makes her a valuable to the Crib, her former employers, and the Fringe planets who tried to get her help in bre Rating: 3.5 stars Genre: Science Fiction/Romance Children of Scarabaeus, by Sara Creasy, is the sequel to Song of Scarabaeus and it appears that it is also the last book of the duology. This story picks up shortly after Edie Sha’nim, bodyguard Finn, and Cat Lancer escaped from Scarabaeus. Edie is a top notch cypherteck who has the ability to manipulate the ecology of evolving planets that makes her a valuable to the Crib, her former employers, and the Fringe planets who tried to get her help in breaking ties with the Crib permanently. Edie can only survive if she has a constant supply of Neuroxin, which happens to only be found on her former home planet of Talas. As the story picks up, Edie is out of Neuroxin and her body is slowly shutting down. Unfortunately for Edie, the only one’s capable of making the Neuroxin is the Crib. Edie is the Cribs protégée as well as a pawn for various factions within the Crib. Thankfully, Cat comes to her rescue which is what she does. Finn is a former Saeth rebel soldier for the Fringe, who ended up as a serf and Edie’s bodyguard/lover. Finn and Edie are connected by a lease that if broken, or he gets further than 2,000 meters away, he dies. They have been trying to find a way to break the lease for a while now. The one thing that definitely changes in this story is the romance between Edie and Finn. Finn's past becomes a little bit clearer in this book, with the arrival of a former flame who is also from his former home planet. Liv Natesa is the team leader of Project Ardra and will do anything to get her hands on Edie. Natesa is her former boss with the Crib, and acted as her so called mentor from the time she was a teenager. She claims to be looking out for Edie’s best interests. She also demands that Edie honor her 11 year agreement she previously agreed to in lieu of her training. Natesa turns to gifted Talasian children in order to ensure that project Ardra works, and Edie doesn’t try to get away again. Failure means that she will lose everything. Natesa means well in her attempts to stop the widespread spread of famine throughout the Crib worlds. She just refuses to actually listen when someone tells her there are problems with her project. Then there is the ever present military asshat Colonel Theron who was in charge of the original Scarabaeus team that Edie and her boss Bethany worked for. He is also part of the Cribs Weapons Research Division (Crib Colonial Unit aka CCU). Theron has some serious questions for Edie, as well as trying to force her into complying with his desires by threatening to court martial her and killing off Finn. I find myself hesitant in reviewing this book. Obviously since this is the second book in the series, Creasy has to tie up loose ends, especially with the Planet of Scarabaeus angle which is Edie’s planet. Her relationship with Finn also needed to be tied up in that they were either going to have a HEA, or either Finn or Edie was going to end up dying to protect the other. The addition of the children, Pris, Galeon, Raena, and Hanna was a nice touch, but were they really necessary for the overall scheme of things? I guess you could say this is a moral question over the necessity of using children in the work place in order to produce a product, or get your bottom line. By championing and protecting the children, Edie took on a whole new characteristic we haven’t seen before. She is more ready to sacrifice herself so that they can have a good life, one which she was not able to have. Edie also became stronger in her desire to find a way to protect Finn from Natesa’s wrath, as well as Theron’s determination that he is nothing but a criminal that needs to be put down. I really had hoped for more participation by Cat in the book, but in the overall scheme of things, she still remains a kickass character that needs her own series. Definitely recommended to my friends who enjoy Science Fiction, especially those who have read, or are currently reading the Sirantha Jax series.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Dangerous Romance Book Reviews

    The book starts with a bang, taking up right where the last one left off, and if you didn’t read book one, it could be a little challenging to keep up with all the science and sci-fi jargon. Children of Scarabaeus is heavy on new words, new worlds, techno speak and the pace is fast so I definitely recommend reading Song of Scarabaeus first if possible, but it is such an interesting premise , well handled love story and ecologically cautionary tale, don’t let that stop you, either. Children of Sca The book starts with a bang, taking up right where the last one left off, and if you didn’t read book one, it could be a little challenging to keep up with all the science and sci-fi jargon. Children of Scarabaeus is heavy on new words, new worlds, techno speak and the pace is fast so I definitely recommend reading Song of Scarabaeus first if possible, but it is such an interesting premise , well handled love story and ecologically cautionary tale, don’t let that stop you, either. Children of Scarabaeus starts with Edie Sha’nim, her lover Finn and her former kidnapper, now compatriot Cat, trying to hop a ship headed for the Fringe without getting caught by the Interplanetary Empire known as the Crib. There they hope to help the Fringe planets utilize the knowledge Edie has to help other worlds escape the shackles of the Crib. The Crib has too many people to feed and so they are taking over planets and wrecking them by terraforming them too fast, turning the entire eco system into “Mash”, a toxic stew of sludge that is plants trees and wildlife all rotten down to the bedrock. Edie is their best chance at fixing the problem and they don’t care if she wants a different life then being their slave or not. In book one, revolutionaries captured Edie and demanded that Serf/prisoner Finn be her bodyguard. In doing so, they created an invisible leash between Edie and Finn by installing a bomb in his head that will go off if anything happens to Edie or if she is more than 2000 meters away from him. This is a major point of the story, how they deal with this and try to circumvent it. The three jump on a ship and put themselves into cryofreeze where they remain for a year before Edie’s former mentor and nemesis, Natesa captures them. Edie and Finn end up on a station, where it quickly becomes clear that Natesa’s in trouble. Things are not going well with the world she is terraforming, and she is really hoping Edie can fix the problems she is desperately trying to pretend aren’t happening on the planet below. Natesa is furious that Edie ran away, she sees it as a personal affront, but she desperately needs Edie’s abilities. Natesa doesn’t like Finn, she sees him as a distraction to the work she wants Edie to accomplish. Edie and Finn become convinced Natesa will kill Finn if they don’t escape. To make matters worse, Edie is appalled to find Natesa has a group of children Cyphertechs only around 7 to 8 years old plugged in to datastreams and working together as a group, something Edie has never seen before. Finn and Edie have so many obstacles to overcome and they are both martyrs in many ways, certain at times that they will die, yet doing everything in their power to save each other. This was a fascinating conclusion to The Song of Scarabeaus, with lots of action, science, and a very touching relationship handled with a light hand, between two flawed people who are steadfast and faithful to each other.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Pamela

    I really enjoyed Sara Creasy's first novel, Song of Scarabaeus, and I was very excited when I got wind of the sequel. Children of Scarabaeus lives up to my hopes based on how absolutely awesome the first book is. The plot didn't progress quite as smoothly as it did in the first book, but the characters and relationships are complex, and the line between good and evil is even blurrier than before. I loved the tenuous relationship between Edie Sha'nim and Finn in the first book, and it grows organi I really enjoyed Sara Creasy's first novel, Song of Scarabaeus, and I was very excited when I got wind of the sequel. Children of Scarabaeus lives up to my hopes based on how absolutely awesome the first book is. The plot didn't progress quite as smoothly as it did in the first book, but the characters and relationships are complex, and the line between good and evil is even blurrier than before. I loved the tenuous relationship between Edie Sha'nim and Finn in the first book, and it grows organically in this one. Edie is a bit of a distant character; this is probably thanks to her lack of a normal childhood and being raised to only have one purpose, to work as a cypherteck, and she's only just begun to try to discover herself outside of that role. Finn, such a mystery in the first book, slowly opens up in this one, and we start to see what makes this guy tick, why he fights against the Crib and why he's falling for Edie. The supporting characters are very nicely fleshed out, from recurring character Cat to Liv Natesa, Edie's Crib handler. The inclusion of the cypherteck trainee children made me wary at first, as it seemed like too easy a thing to trigger Edie's emotions, but they ended up growing on me. Edie has to basically save the world, and using kids as a metaphor for that is a bit heavy handed to me, but the kids themselves are interesting, sympathetic characters, and that thankfully keeps them from becoming simple plot devices to evoke an emotional reaction in Edie and the reader. The progression of events unfortunately wasn't as smooth as it could have been. In the beginning of the book, it jumped from situation to situation: they're in the spaceport, trying to steal the toxin that keeps Edie alive; they're escaping; they're in cryosleep; they're on the Crib ship. It wasn't until halfway through, once Edie had settled into a semi-normal routine with the Crib, that I felt like things were starting to move in a more orderly fashion. Don't get me wrong; I like being surprised by sudden plot twists, but these weren't really twists. They were things that had to happen to get Edie and Finn where they needed to be, and those things just didn't fit into the overarching plot terribly smoothly. The characters and fantastic worldbuilding more than make up for it, though, and after I'd made it through those jerky first pages, I was sucked right into the world once again. This is great science fiction, with plenty of technology and philosophy to sink your teeth into, but with a very human, emotional story at its heart. Great stuff. (Review originally published at The Discriminating Fangirl)

  16. 4 out of 5

    Anna (Bobs Her Hair)

    In Children of Scarabaeus there is more focus on Edie and Finn, less of the technical jargon, more plot developments, and resolutions to ongoing problems, yet with all Sara Creasy’s amazing world-building the events on Scarabaeus jumped to warp speed and I couldn’t suspend my belief enough to enjoy the conclusion to Edie Sha’nim’s bid for freedom. The Story Edie Sha’nim has escaped the clutches of the Crib Empire, along with her bodyguard, Finn. Together they hold the key that will deliver freedo In Children of Scarabaeus there is more focus on Edie and Finn, less of the technical jargon, more plot developments, and resolutions to ongoing problems, yet with all Sara Creasy’s amazing world-building the events on Scarabaeus jumped to warp speed and I couldn’t suspend my belief enough to enjoy the conclusion to Edie Sha’nim’s bid for freedom. The Story Edie Sha’nim has escaped the clutches of the Crib Empire, along with her bodyguard, Finn. Together they hold the key that will deliver freedom to the Fringe and other terraformed worlds from the tyrannical government that demands yearly payment of precious resources or watch their planet die. Edie and Finn still have the issue of the leash that keeps Finn within a certain range or the bomb in his brain will explode. Another side effect to the leash is an adrenaline rush in her body causes Finn incredible pain, thwarting their sexual attraction to one another. It’s a price they pay and accept for the time. Their present goal is to reach the Fringe and evade re-capture. Unfortunately, the Crib finds them , which leads to new problems and a moral dilemma. Children from Talasi, Edie’s home planet, are the new breed of cypherteck. Edie grapples with the need to escape with Finn to save the Fringe worlds or incite the Crib by kidnapping the coveted and gifted children. Save the galaxy or save the children. Escape or ensure recapture. My Feelings There are moments in the story where Edie and Finn must use the children for the greater good. Their morally ambiguous actions were credible to their situation. Sara Creasy doesn’t try to gloss over her characters’ need to survive with convenient plot devices that keep things black and white. This could have been a four star book BUT something happens that made it hard to suspend belief in this science fiction novel. In Song of Scarabaeus, the reader learns that the BRATS(Retroviral Automated Terraforma Seeds) Edie sabotaged when she was 16 years old have developed sentience. In this novel, it goes up to astronomical levels. (view spoiler)[Haller is the intellectual and dominant mind for Scarabaeus. The seeds were planted six years before and Haller was invaded by the planet the year before and he wants to take over the galaxy! Really! (hide spoiler)] There is an HEA at the end of the story. It fell flat. No warm fuzzies. No “Yay, at last.” Just ho hum and “Oh, okay.” Ah well. : / Borrow this book from the library. I'm glad I did. Grade: C

  17. 4 out of 5

    rameau

    This review can also be found on Books as portable pieces of thought-blog. This didn’t start how I imagined it would. The confusion could have been avoided had I read the blurb for the second book, but I didn’t and I had a expectations of where Edie and Finn were going. They took a small detour to two different planets instead. Not that this is a bad thing but I had hoped to see more of the Fringe, which we never got to do. The book starts with Edie and Finn on the run. They need to find the neuro This review can also be found on Books as portable pieces of thought-blog. This didn’t start how I imagined it would. The confusion could have been avoided had I read the blurb for the second book, but I didn’t and I had a expectations of where Edie and Finn were going. They took a small detour to two different planets instead. Not that this is a bad thing but I had hoped to see more of the Fringe, which we never got to do. The book starts with Edie and Finn on the run. They need to find the neuroxin, a kind of toxin that keeps Edie alive. After ensuring her continued existence, Edie, Finn, and Cat head towards the Fringe. They’re captured relatively quickly and brought back to Natesa who is still fixated on using Edie to further her own goals. Only she’s not using Edie alone. There are other children, talented like Edie, being manipulated to do their duty to Crib Colonial Unit. There’s politics, there’s human suffering, and there’s foreign intelligence. What more could you ask for? This isn’t a trilogy, this is a story told in two parts. And just like the Song, the Children of Scarabaeus starts slowly. The first forty and fifty pages weren’t the problem for me, the struggle came later when Creasy decided to deepen the characterisations and relationships. For a while it felt incongruous with the rest of the story as logical as the development was. Instead of talking to each other, both Edie and Finn kept their secrets until it was too late to say anything. But then, luckily, the plot took over and the adventure continued. Edie returns to Scarabaeus to finish what she started years ago and to save a handful of lives on the side. She and Finn talk, and disagree, but neither is a match for the planet. We get to see another side of Scarabaeus, barren but just as deadly as the megabiosis of the first book was. In some ways the world building in the Scarabaues books seems superficial, but I love the subtlety of it. It feels like the books only scratched the surface of a bigger world, and not only because we never get to see the Fringe worlds. I want more of everything. More of CCU, Fringe, politics, and war. Sadly, I don’t know if I'll ever get it.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Aemelia

    Sara Creasy took me on another phenomenal trip across the universe in CHILDREN OF SCARABAEUS, as she continued to catapult me into the thrilling escapades of Edie and Finn. She did a fantastic job weaving adventure, suspense, science fiction, and romance into an captivating tale that enthralled me from start to finish. I loved watching Edie and Finn's relationship go to the next level and continue to grow. I could understand Edie's fears and struggles, as she wasn't sure if Finn was with her only Sara Creasy took me on another phenomenal trip across the universe in CHILDREN OF SCARABAEUS, as she continued to catapult me into the thrilling escapades of Edie and Finn. She did a fantastic job weaving adventure, suspense, science fiction, and romance into an captivating tale that enthralled me from start to finish. I loved watching Edie and Finn's relationship go to the next level and continue to grow. I could understand Edie's fears and struggles, as she wasn't sure if Finn was with her only because of the leash or if he truly had feelings for her. She also knew that she was risking a lot by refusing to leave the children to the Crib. I loved that Ms. Creasy took her to the edge and didn't give her an easy out. We were never left wondering what Finn would do, and I liked that. He was very straightforward in his feelings. It doesn't hurt that Finn is such a delicious character, he's strong, very alpha, caring and absolutely oozes sex appeal. If I had to be attached to someone, he would be a top-pick! I liked how Scarabaeus was worked back into the story, it was a very interesting twist that I never expected. I also liked seeing Cat again, she was a fun, interesting character that I would like to see more of, she has a lot of depth and mystery that I think would be great to explore further, if Ms. Creasy ever chose to expand on this series. I really hope that she writes more about Finn and Edie, I would like to see where else their travels could take them and what other kind of trouble could they get in and out of.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Li

    I thought the first book, Song of Scarabaeus, was good - well, CHILDREN OF SCARABAEUS was even more satisfying. I may have mentioned previously that I love reading books that focus on the same set of characters over time because we get to see them grow, and CHILDREN just proved that to be true. Both Edie and Finn have matured since SONG; Edie, especially, is so much stronger in this book, which in turn meant I could really believe in Edie and Finn's relationship and HEA. As with SONG, the world-b I thought the first book, Song of Scarabaeus, was good - well, CHILDREN OF SCARABAEUS was even more satisfying. I may have mentioned previously that I love reading books that focus on the same set of characters over time because we get to see them grow, and CHILDREN just proved that to be true. Both Edie and Finn have matured since SONG; Edie, especially, is so much stronger in this book, which in turn meant I could really believe in Edie and Finn's relationship and HEA. As with SONG, the world-building had depth and I found myself sinking back easily into Sara Creasy's universe, this time with the added benefit of knowing and caring about the characters from the start - learning more about Finn's background in particular was a bonus. The plot reveal caught me by surprise - I probably should have guessed, but didn't. And there was possibly a slight tinge of deus ex machina towards the end to wrap things up, but I didn't really care by that point. A very excellent duology - easily one of my favourites of the year - and I look forward to seeing what Sara Creasy writes next.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Canoe

    I loved Song of Scarabaeus, so I was stoked to get its sequel. Children of Scarabaues really doesn't disappoint. The two books were obviously (and pleasantly) planned together. Both books are a well done mix of sci-fi, horror, and romance. I love how Creasy's biology background comes through in the books. It really makes the jungle (megabiosis) of Scarabaeus come alive (in a horrific way). Natessa and Theron are nasty villains, who made me squirm whenever they came on the scene. I only had one di I loved Song of Scarabaeus, so I was stoked to get its sequel. Children of Scarabaues really doesn't disappoint. The two books were obviously (and pleasantly) planned together. Both books are a well done mix of sci-fi, horror, and romance. I love how Creasy's biology background comes through in the books. It really makes the jungle (megabiosis) of Scarabaeus come alive (in a horrific way). Natessa and Theron are nasty villains, who made me squirm whenever they came on the scene. I only had one disappointment. The first love scene between Edie and Finn was just so sterile. The couple has so much heat in the first book and into the second that this scene was just blah. If you blink, you might miss it. I'm not one to like highly drawn out, blow by blow description scenes, but I caught myself thinking "wow, that was super-fast, poor girl." lol. Besides that I enjoyed this book immensely. Highly recommended.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Jill Myles

    I loooooved this. It was so good. I loved the first one, but this one deserves all the little extra o's because I thought she took what was a great setting and a good plot and brought it to the next level. The relationship was stronger in this one without being overly romancey (for those that pooh pooh that sort of thing) and I love how strong Edie is without being a gun-toting, aggressive heroine. She's a ridiculously strong SCIENTIST protag. How often do we see that? This was just fabulous and I loooooved this. It was so good. I loved the first one, but this one deserves all the little extra o's because I thought she took what was a great setting and a good plot and brought it to the next level. The relationship was stronger in this one without being overly romancey (for those that pooh pooh that sort of thing) and I love how strong Edie is without being a gun-toting, aggressive heroine. She's a ridiculously strong SCIENTIST protag. How often do we see that? This was just fabulous and made me so sad that there are not more books in the series (though I felt it ended at a perfect spot? So it's more greedy-sads on my part than anything else) and that SF Romance is not a more popular genre.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Summer

    I really wanted to like this book as I really liked the previous book in the series. However it just didn't deliver for me. You don't learn anything new about anyone and almost immediately everyone is captured by the Crib and it's the main heroine complaining of her situation and not doing much about it. It's a shame since the first book was really engrossing and interesting. Oh well. I really wanted to like this book as I really liked the previous book in the series. However it just didn't deliver for me. You don't learn anything new about anyone and almost immediately everyone is captured by the Crib and it's the main heroine complaining of her situation and not doing much about it. It's a shame since the first book was really engrossing and interesting. Oh well.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Miss Clark

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. 2.5 stars It was pretty good, but left a lot to be desired in terms of plot and character development. I especially wanted to see Edie and Finn on their own and see if they could be together outside of these events and people and high-stress situations that have defined their relationship with one another to date. Oh, well. A welcome addition to the sci-fi genre.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Dana

    Yes, this is one of my favorite scifi series. Only it isn't really a series is it if it's only two books?!?! Sara Creasy needs to write more of this world / galaxy. Maybe not a million more, but more than just these two books about Edie, Finn, and Cat. What happens to them? What about Galeon and Pris? What about the planet...Scarabaeus? So much more to extend the storyline. I did read somewhere that she's thinking about writing more books for this series and that would make me very happy if she Yes, this is one of my favorite scifi series. Only it isn't really a series is it if it's only two books?!?! Sara Creasy needs to write more of this world / galaxy. Maybe not a million more, but more than just these two books about Edie, Finn, and Cat. What happens to them? What about Galeon and Pris? What about the planet...Scarabaeus? So much more to extend the storyline. I did read somewhere that she's thinking about writing more books for this series and that would make me very happy if she did. I didn't want to drop out of this world. The scary Scarabaeus plant evolution. The escape plan from Natesa and the Crib spaceship. Renegade Saeth. All of the character and world building I love. She even threw a slight romance in the background between Finn and Edie, but it certainly doesn't dominate the whole story. I bought both books and wish there were more.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Jai

    Review from my book blog (wordpress / livejournal) I think that thanks to a couple of influential bloggers, this series is on more people’s radars, and that makes me happy. I really enjoyed Song of Scarabaeus when I read it in September last year, and when I heard that it’s sequel, Children of Scarabaeus was available on NetGalley, I requested it ASAP. **** mild spoilers for Song of Scarabaeus **** The Premise: In this continuation of the story that follows Edie Sha’nim and her bodyguard Finn, Ed Review from my book blog (wordpress / livejournal) I think that thanks to a couple of influential bloggers, this series is on more people’s radars, and that makes me happy. I really enjoyed Song of Scarabaeus when I read it in September last year, and when I heard that it’s sequel, Children of Scarabaeus was available on NetGalley, I requested it ASAP. **** mild spoilers for Song of Scarabaeus **** The Premise: In this continuation of the story that follows Edie Sha’nim and her bodyguard Finn, Edie has freed herself from her kidnappers and her goal is to use what she’s recently learned to help Fringe worlds with their reliance on Crib technology to keep their environments viable. Unfortunately, her freedom is short-lived, as the Crib government catches up with Edie and her friends, and reclaims her as their property. Edie has to cooperate or Finn suffers, so she reluctantly goes back to work as a biocyph for Liv Natesa’s pet project on a new terraformed world named Prisca. During the project she makes some startling discoveries about what the Crib is up to, including the use of children as their new breed of cypertecks. In the meantime she’s also asked to return to the place where it all began for her: the planet Scarabaeus. Read the first chapter of Children of Scarabaeus here (pdf) My Thoughts: I was anticipating this read so much that it leaped over all others in my TBR and landed on the top of my queue, and then I read it all in one day. I’m happy to say it felt very readable and I had no inclination to put it down once I started. This book had much of the same sort of twists and turns as the first, with escapes and captures, spaceship crashes, deadly planetary disasters and wild animals. Not to mention the manipulations of Natesa, who wants Edie on her project, which promises terraforming at a much faster pace than ever before and of Colonel Theron who wants Edie to work for him on Scarabaeus. Like the first book, Children of Scarabaeus has a lot going on. In fact, it surprises me how much happens in it within a relatively short number of pages (my eARC is numbered at 322 pages). Edie and Finn begin the story with the same relationship they had when Song of Scarabaeus ended, which was a place where they trust each other completely, but things are still new and Edie isn’t quite sure where she stands. It doesn’t help matters that the chip in Finn’s head (the one that could kill him if he’s too far from Edie) causes emotional feedback that makes romantic entanglements complicated, or that Finn is a hard man for Edie to read. Edie wants Finn by her side, but she also wants him to be free, and not have to be by her side, especially when her skills make her a resource everyone wants. I wasn’t sure how things were going to go for them with their general lack of communication, but this book moves them forward a lot more than the first did, and the romance was not as understated as the first installment. The descriptions of the biocyph and cyperteck technology as Edie sees it continues to be fascinating. I really love how it’s described visually instead of trying to explain the technical details behind it. When the cyperteck children are introduced, I liked how they related to the code differently from even Edie and other ‘tecks. Instead of understanding things visually, they go by sound and by feeling. The code is something living that needs fixing so it can be “well”, and the children instinctively work as a team to patch the code up. They have no idea what the code does, all they are interested in is the feel of the code itself. Children of Scarabaeus does a very good job in tying up all the loose plot strings left over from Song of Scarabaeus. There were a few times where I thought the story was going to go one way (and this probably would have lengthened the plot), but Edie and Finn instead are steered towards their destinies. The way things are satisfyingly tied up leads me to believe that this series is now complete, which is in a way disappointing. This is a case where I would be really happy for more books and more adventures with Edie and Finn. I don’t really think that Children of Scarabaeus rushes to a conclusion, but it upon me before I wanted it to be. I wanted to spend more time, leisurely exploring the galaxy and watching the relationship develop between Edie and Finn. I could have used a book or two between book 1 and the conclusion here, and I think that would have also sidestepped the feeling that the plot twists and deaths in the story were a means to get to the appropriate ending within the pages allowed. I hope that the next series Sara Creasy writes next gets to be longer. And this is from a girl who balks at long series, so do not take my words lightly. Overall: I really loved Song of Scarabaeus, and this is a worthy sequel that has the same action and awesome world building as it’s predecessor. It comes pretty close to pleasing me in the same way the first book does, but it has one handicap – it has to complete the story in one book, which means the romance and the complex plot are tied up before I was ready. I think the author did a good job at making these things satisfying (particularly the ending), but I would have been fine if I had to wait one more book (or two) for it. Thumbs up for this series – get both books.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Lisa

    Edie seems to have grown a spine. In the first book, Edie is manipulated, belittled, and used by everyone. Here Edie doesn't take carp from anyone. The hated spectre of her life. The Crib have found her, Finn, and Cat, the navigator while they are in cyrosleep. Edie becomes forceful and actually says she doesn't want to be used anymore unless there are guarantees such as protecting Finn's life. Edie tries to run away but can't forget the people living in the Fringes, slowing starving and dying. Edie seems to have grown a spine. In the first book, Edie is manipulated, belittled, and used by everyone. Here Edie doesn't take carp from anyone. The hated spectre of her life. The Crib have found her, Finn, and Cat, the navigator while they are in cyrosleep. Edie becomes forceful and actually says she doesn't want to be used anymore unless there are guarantees such as protecting Finn's life. Edie tries to run away but can't forget the people living in the Fringes, slowing starving and dying. And she finds out that they have testing and training children to do the same as Edie. Scarabeus, the alien self-defending planet, is sentinent. And it wants Edie!

  27. 5 out of 5

    Mindy

    I enjoyed these two books for two reasons - first of all, the science fiction was actually interesting. A lot of thought and description went into creating it. Second, I liked the hero and the heroine. For once, nobody was "alpha"! They were fairly normal people. The hero was quiet and not up himself. The heroine wasn't out to kick everyone's ass. She just was trying to live her life as best as she could, considering the circumstances. It was very refreshing in a world of sci fi romance where it I enjoyed these two books for two reasons - first of all, the science fiction was actually interesting. A lot of thought and description went into creating it. Second, I liked the hero and the heroine. For once, nobody was "alpha"! They were fairly normal people. The hero was quiet and not up himself. The heroine wasn't out to kick everyone's ass. She just was trying to live her life as best as she could, considering the circumstances. It was very refreshing in a world of sci fi romance where it seems every character has got to be tough. These characters were smart instead.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Kathy M.

    Similar to the first book, the plot seemed to progress by external sources changing the situation rather than the characters taking control, so again I felt like I was watching a chain of events rather than really getting into the characters and their plight. However, the author developed the characters more, and maintained the incredible creativity - the worlds, plot, and imagination all stand out as unique and intricately done, and will stay with me long after the rest of the story is forgotte Similar to the first book, the plot seemed to progress by external sources changing the situation rather than the characters taking control, so again I felt like I was watching a chain of events rather than really getting into the characters and their plight. However, the author developed the characters more, and maintained the incredible creativity - the worlds, plot, and imagination all stand out as unique and intricately done, and will stay with me long after the rest of the story is forgotten. Wish the ending was a bit less abrupt.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Steve

    Five stars if only for how compelling I found this book. It helped that it started with the technology, and worked backward, rather than having me work it all out for myself like the first book in this series. Once that was in my head, I started to recall the salient points from it and was able to integrate them. The plot moved along at a brisk pace with a few sharp right turns, building up to a delicious climax, that was over all too quickly. There was a little resolution, I personally would ha Five stars if only for how compelling I found this book. It helped that it started with the technology, and worked backward, rather than having me work it all out for myself like the first book in this series. Once that was in my head, I started to recall the salient points from it and was able to integrate them. The plot moved along at a brisk pace with a few sharp right turns, building up to a delicious climax, that was over all too quickly. There was a little resolution, I personally would have preferred more.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Engel Dreizehn

    Agian loving the bio/wet tech involved and was horrified yet intrigued by the theme of exploitation/rearing of children for "glory's end". Liken both the male and female protagonist can very much carry their own weight with their respective skills. Plus was excited by...something is growing on this planet. Agian loving the bio/wet tech involved and was horrified yet intrigued by the theme of exploitation/rearing of children for "glory's end". Liken both the male and female protagonist can very much carry their own weight with their respective skills. Plus was excited by...something is growing on this planet.

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