Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase after clicking those links, I will receive a small commission from the sale at no extra cost to you.Persephone Station by Stina Leicht
Published by Gallery Books on January 5, 2021
Genres: Adult Fiction, Science Fiction, LGBTQ
Format: eBook (511 pages)
Purchase: Amazon • IndieBound
Add Book: Goodreads • Bookhype
Hugo award-nominated author Stina Leicht has created a take on space opera for fans of The Mandalorian and Cowboy Bebop in this high-stakes adventure.
Persephone Station, a seemingly backwater planet that has largely been ignored by the United Republic of Worlds becomes the focus for the Serrao-Orlov Corporation as the planet has a few secrets the corporation tenaciously wants to exploit.
Rosie—owner of Monk’s Bar, in the corporate town of West Brynner—caters to wannabe criminals and rich Earther tourists, of a sort, at the front bar. However, exactly two types of people drank at Monk’s back bar: members of a rather exclusive criminal class and those who sought to employ them.
Angel—ex-marine and head of a semi-organized band of beneficent criminals, wayward assassins, and washed up mercenaries with a penchant for doing the honorable thing—is asked to perform a job for Rosie. What this job reveals will affect Persephone and put Angel and her squad up against an army. Despite the odds, they are rearing for a fight with the Serrao-Orlov Corporation. For Angel, she knows that once honor is lost, there is no regaining it. That doesn’t mean she can’t damned well try.
Proceed With Caution:
This book contains death, murder, grief, mentions of suicide, and colonization.
Persephone Station is set on the planet of the same name where a mega corporation wants to colonize it and take advantage of the local people who have some very value attributes. Rosie, a bar owner and crime boss, won’t let that happen though and hires a merry band of mercenaries to help her protect the native species.
This book made me feel stupid. Especially since it was the second book in a row that I found clunky and confusing. Persephone Station immediately introduces us to Paulie, Rosie, Angel, Sukyi, Vissia, and Kennedy. There’s a lot of head hopping and no distinctive voice. It was very hard to separate these characters at first, as well as to remember who’s connected to who, and what they’re doing and why they’re here. The story just jumps from action to action, problem to problem, with no space to get to know any of them.
Persephone Station does slow down a bit around a third in, which is where we get some info dumps about a few of the characters as well as some plot explanation. This is also when most of them team up and get on their way, so it makes sense that we finally know what their roles and interests were. It made the plot much easier to follow after having it essentially spelled out for me. Like I said, I felt stupid because I needed my hand held to get a grasp on this story.
When I finally settled into Persephone Station it moved along quite swiftly and soon became apparent that the last fifty percent of the book was dedicated to the big showdown. Most of this book is a big battle or characters navigating around to be battle ready. But I hadn’t been given any reason to care about these characters and their livelihood outside of the understanding that colonization is wrong. It was also hard to imagine this battle because the world building is very sparse, so I couldn’t imagine where or how this was all happening.
I did really enjoy the final ten percent of Persephone Station, but at that point it’s simply too late. The villain revealed the extent of her plan and she is completely out of her mind. It was fascinating and I wish more of the book had focused on this aspect! As it is, Persephone Station is a long, drawn out battle scene about characters that we barely get to know, set in a world that we know nothing about and have no investment in.