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Freedom's Challenge (1999)

Freedom's Challenge (1999)

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3.89 of 5 Votes: 5
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0441006256 (ISBN13: 9780441006250)

About book Freedom's Challenge (1999)

OK, I really would like to talk more about the story, but I'm just so distracted by what McCaffrey has made Kris into, which is truly appalling. In the last book, I was incensed because Kris was, in effect, raped while drunk. Bad enough that McCaffrey trivialized the fact that that does happen to women by treating it as no big deal, and even making it into an "oopsie!" that Kris just accidentally cheated on her man. But would you believe that it happens again in book 3? This time I definitely wouldn't call it rape, because in this instance, they were clearly both way far gone. But it still further trivializes what happened to her in book 2, and frankly makes me despise her as a character. I mean, I know I said in book 1 that I wanted her to have flaws, but come on. Such an utter lack of self-respect, or self-restraint, or I don't even know, that you'll sleep with anyone handy every time you have a bit too much to drink? Especially when you claim to be in a committed relationship already? That's mind-bogglingly appalling, in my opinion. She's bloody lucky that Zainal seems to have no problems with any of this, and just appears thrilled that there are babies (Oh, I didn't mention that part? Yeah, she gets knocked up while drunk again.), but seriously? I would kind of love for him to start sleeping with other people, and when she objects, be all "Oh, are we not in an open relationship? I'm sorry, baby, I must have gotten the wrong idea from your willingness to give it up to anyone handy whenever you get drunk." I mean, seriously? WTF? I truly cannot fathom why McCaffrey turned this character into this? The only thing I can think is that, in order to not anger the feminists too much by having Kris just capitulate to the demand for her to bear children more or less against her will, McCaffrey thought she'd get around it by having her have the babies, but their conception is totally not her fault. Except that making her the kind of woman who basically makes herself helpless and available after a few drinks is so unbelievably anti-feminist that that couldn't possibly be the reason. But what other explanation is there? It's truly baffling.I'm probably taking this too seriously; after all, it's really just a piece of fluff sci-fi. But I just find the whole situation so repulsive, and it makes me pretty much despise Kris. I wasn't fond of her before, because she was too perfect, but this? It's gross, and I can't stand her anymore. Which is really unfortunate, because McCaffrey normally really is so good at creating likable, strong female leads. I really like almost all of them, and if they dropped into my universe, I would love to be friends with them. But Kris? I don't think I'd want to have anything to do with her.

From Library Journal Abandoned on the planet Botany by their Catteni masters, a group of humans and other enslaved races now seeks to reclaim their worlds for themselves. This third installment of a series that includes Freedom's Landing (LJ 4/15/95) and Freedom's Choice (LJ 5/15/97) chronicles the stages of the war for liberation, from the theft of Catteni ships to the liberation of cargoes of slave laborers to a bold strike at the heart of the oppressor. McCaffrey excels as a storyteller and as a creator of worlds. Despite an occasional lapse in suspense, her latest novel provides a satisfying culmination to a saga of desperate courage and the desire for freedom. Most libraries should add this to their sf collections. Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. From Another rousing episode, perhaps the last, in McCaffrey's saga, begun in Freedom's Landing (1995) and continued in Freedom's Choice , about the colonists on the planet Botany. Botany is now under attack by the Eosi, who are unable to penetrate the planet-surrounding Bubble constructed by the advanced race that had given permission for the colony to remain on the planet. Kris Bjornson, who was with the first group dumped on the planet by the Eosi-dominated Cattani forces, is one of the settlement's leaders, as is her lover, the insurgent Cattani, Zainal. Having built a new home for themselves, the settlers decide it is time to contact dissidents on the various Eosi-controlled worlds and wage a war of liberation. Since the Botany settlers possess stolen technology, including Cattani warships, they are able to rescue other victims of the Eosi and bring them to Botany. Kris and Zainal lead a small band, all disguised as Cattani, to the Cattani home world on the first sortie to enlist Cattani rebels in the battle. The action is fast paced and riveting, and the characters, human and of other species, are well limned and exhibit great individuality. McCaffrey continues to amaze with her ability to create disparate, well-realized worlds and to portray believable humans, convincing aliens of varied sorts, and credible interactions between them all. A very satisfying tale. Sally Estes

Do You like book Freedom's Challenge (1999)?

More of the same as the first two books. I never really felt the urgency, struggle, or close calls you might associate with a titular "Challenge." I like Kris progressively less with each book (do something stupid once and it's a plot device, do the exact stupid thing again and it shows utter lack of character growth). I've lost all respect for her. Zainal is still pretty cool. There are times when McCaffrey really belabors the point, and I can't stand that every crazy scheme goes through flawlessly and without consequence. It's a tad dull for a big climatic finale.

I enjoyed this installment of the Catteni/Freedom series more than the previous one, although many of the same flaws still apply. There are still too many characters with proper names and not enough descriptors to keep track of, and events unfold with very little in the way of real drama. When things happen, even when they are supposedly fraught with danger, they always work out with no or minimal problems, which leeches the tension away. Still, it is a light, fun read with Zainel and the other residents of Botany deciding to take on the tyrannical Eosi and free the peoples of Earth and Catten. The language is easy, the characters (when you know who's who) are likeable, and the landscape interesting, sort of the sci-fi equivalent of a cozy mystery.

4.5*Book source ~ Home libraryThe dropped survivors on Botany have come a long way from those first days when they had virtually nothing. They are living very well with many comforts of home and they are at the brink of ending the Eosi domination of several species and many planets and Kris Bjornson and Zainal are at the center of things. Making a good life on Botany isn’t enough for Zainal though. He intends to destroy the Eosi for enslaving his people for two thousand years and for enslaving other worlds as well. However, the final piece of the plan will only work at great sacrifice to himself. Will his plan work and, more importantly, will he survive it?Once again I’m plunged into the fight for survival, the fight to free Earth, Botany and many other planets and how everyone works together for the greater good of the community. It’s an awesome ride. All of the pieces of the puzzle come together and if they do so a little too neatly I’m not going to argue. I love this series and I love watching how everyone handles their part of the Great Plan despite overwhelming odds. A fast-flowing plot, great writing and wonderful characters keep me engaged from beginning to end. Anne McCaffrey always has so much going on and yet manages to keep the books to a reasonable length. There’s just no way to summarize her stories without going on and on about everything that’s happening. All I can say is this; open to the first page and hang onto your britches. It's going to be a wild ride.
—A Voracious Reader (a.k.a. Carol)

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