Title: Body Option
Author: Talya Andor
Publisher: Less Than Three Press
Characters: Grant Badu & Trefoil Agent
POV: Third Person
Sub-Genre: Science Fiction
For five years, Grant Badu has been part of a solid fighting team with the Gemini Suit called Trefoil Argent. Together, they fly and fight so effectively, their combat record so impressive, that they’ve become informally known as the Infallible Duo.
When a containing classified military innovations is stolen and shot down in the foothills of disputed border territory, Grant and Argent are tapped for its swift recovery. But the mission requires pilot Argent to take on the one cybernetic option he’s been avoiding, for reasons even Grant doesn’t know.
“Body Option” is based on a “what would happen if the nukes went off” premise where countries have splintered into much smaller nations and protect what arable land they have jealously.
After the Thirty-year Poison War and the United Nations’ ban on human-foot warfare or chemical warfare of any type, most nations built robots or long-range drones for war. With both arable land and a seaport, the nation of Crestovia needed a more effective alternative. Their solution was to offer their young, bright, disabled children the option for body repair, or a crack at the Gemini Suit program.
The first thing I thought was how this was one of the few stories I’d read similar to Anne McCaffrey’s Brainship series. Thankfully, it is done really well and goes a different direction than those well-known books. The world building was really good and the author creates a reality and characters that are interesting and blend very well. Grant and Argent, although completely different physically, both love to fly and make a great team, with Grant able to accept that he is mostly there to back Argent up.
I can’t say what I liked best as I rather enjoyed it all, but the last page or two fit so well with the characters I’d come to know and it created a HEA that was believable without being the “white picket fence” ending that I know I will definitely be reading this story again.
I would definitely recommend this for lovers of science fiction, war pilots, or determined men. Even if you mostly enjoy longer stories like I do, this one kept me turning pages from start to finish.
This was my first Talya Andor book, but I’m thinking of trying another soon…