This is book is kinda like a puppy. It’s earnest, cute and just lovely.

Written by
Becky Chambers in 2016

One of the best books I read last year was the debut title from Becky Chambers called The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet. It was fun, concentrated on the characters who shared a grand adventure and left me with a warm fuzzy feeling inside.

You can imagine just how happy I was that the second in the series, A Closed and Common Orbit, released.

To backtrack, at the end of the first book, the Wayfarer’s artificial intelligence Lovelace was reset due to damage, and lost all of her personality. Due to the crew feeling as if they had just lost one of their own, the ships engineer Pepper decides to take the newly reset Lovelace away in an artificial body to give her a chance to develop on her own.

Landing in Port Coriol, where Pepper has a shop, along with an old friend Blue, she settles into trying to help Lovelace – who calls herself Sidra – become whatever she wants to be. Intertwining with Sidra’s own issues is Pepper’s own personal story of survival and origin. We find out why she’s so sympathetic to the plight of artificial intelligences.

The theme of the book follows on from the first in the series. It’s about life’s little adventures, growing up, growing into one’s own skin and feeling loved. It’s also about being accepted and finding one’s own place in society, friends and family. It’s just such a fun book to read, though parts of it are truly sad and anger inducing. However, that’s what life’s about, isn’t it? Facing adversity and finding your own little slice of happiness.

I highly recommend A Closed and Common Orbit for those people who loved the movie The Station Master (which, by the way, I did). Both works are in a similar vein, society’s misfits growing into their own skin and finding happiness along the way. I hope there’s more to come!


It’s not exciting, but then neither is curling up in a warm bed in winter. This book is exactly like that.

Read this if you…

Are looking for a science fiction book that’s not all about explosions and end of civilization type drama.

Skip this if you…

Miss your lazors.


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