Laura E. Reeve
Roc, Jul 6 2010, $7.99
Ariane Kedros is not her real name, but she is a partner of Aether Exploration as well as a Reserve Major in the Consortium of Autonomous Worlds. The Terran Expansion League wants her dead as a war criminal who killed everyone residing inside the Ura-Ginh solar system. Her deadly effort ended the war and led to her new identity enhanced by modern technology.
Now she is considered a hero for saving G-145 by sending a temporal distortion weapon into N-space. The Minoans, the only other known sentient race, is to humans what humans are to horses. They know of her past and the speeded up metabolism that make her the perfect candidate to go to and explore the Builder’s home world; none of them can perform the mission as it would kill them. Wanting to explore the world of another sentient race even one that faded into oblivion Ariane volunteers; that is if the implant proves compatible to her body. However, even in deepest space Ariane cannot elude her enemies as one still stalks her.
In the distant future, mankind has reached the stars, but instead of fighting over a dying ice aged earth, wars are in space and on populated planets. Fans of military science fiction will enjoy the Kedros saga though Pathfinder has fewer battles than previous entries (see Peacekeeper and Vigilante). Courageous yet filled with remorse for the outcome of killing a billion people doing her duty, Kedros still seeks redemption. Pathfinder may not provide that for her, but she hopes it allows her to run from her past of what is acceptable as espionage and civilian deaths if you are with the victors and war crimes if you lose. Though she has doubts re her war time actions, she raises the fairness issue of the grunts take the blame as “rotten apples” for atrocities while those who give the orders receive medals and promotions (think Abu Ghraib).