Selling Out

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Selling Out

Quantium Gravity Series #2

In Keeping it Real we met Lila, Miss Cyborg Protector of the Year and Zal, Mister Improbable Elf Rocker.  Lila was to protect Zal, Zal just had to stay was pretty simple at first.  So of course things had to go hairy real quick, causing all sorts of problems (not the least of which Lila reuniting with the Elf who messed up her body to begin with) and ending all sorts of problems.

Selling Out, the second book, at least grants the fact that Lila is getting a crappy job with little chance of real success and high probability of death, dismemberment and lack of back-up.  Sent to Demonia to retrieve whatever information she could on Zal the half demon elf, Lila is ill-prepared for much of what awaits.  Nothing new, since she was ill-prepared for most of Keeping it Real as well, but her ingenuity and stubbornness once again helps her to survive.  Zal meanwhile is on a mission to protect her, since the Game they are both playing has not played it self out (well that's one of the reasons) and that's when things get really weird.

I can definitely say I read through this sequel with more reluctance than the first book.  The first book was such a wonder and filled with such keen things that the fact I lost track of things on occasion didn't bother me overmuch.  It bothered me more in this book.  True, Robson does an outstanding job describing Demonia and its societal structuring (middle management really is hell), but its not enough to hold together some of the fragmented pieces of plot.

Between the abrupt shifts in narrative focus (Lila, Zal and even Malachi each have separate adventures that we follow), somewhat pointless nature too much of what happens to all three characters and lack of adequate bantering time for Lila and Zal, the book had me spending more time wondering when things would make sense then concentrating on the story itself.  I will say this, I liked Malachi quite a bit in the first book and was sad by how little we saw him, Robson makes up for it twofold in this book.  Sadly I'm not sure the screen-time he had was completely necessary.

As of this review there are two more books already out in the Quantum Gravity series Going Under (Book 3) and Chasing the Dragon (Book 4).  It’s my assumption that what happened to each character will have more impact in the next novels, but that's just a guess on my part.  While this was a fun ride, it was too often confusing and jumbled to be truly entertaining.

Book Blurb for Selling Out

Book two of the Quantum Gravity series sees Lila Black drawn into the intoxicatingly dangerous demon realm. Capricious, in love with beauty, demons are best left to themselves. This is not easy when they can't resist tampering with humans.

Justina Robson's new series is a joyful melding of science fiction and fantasy brought together in the figure of the dangerously lovely Lila Black, a 21-old secret agent who's had much of her body replaced with weapon-and-armor-heavy intelligent metal and who isn't sure where her mind ends and her installed AI begins. Lila's world is one where demons, elves, and elementals live alongside people. And somehow Lila and the other agents of the security agency have to provide security for all and stay alive themselves.

Night Owl Reviews Feb, 2010 3.50