Tuesday, February 08, 2022

Calliope: The Gods We Dreamt of as Children by Scott Mari

The Gods We Dreamt of as ChildrenThe Gods We Dreamt of as Children by Scott Mari
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Calliope's latest story fairly bristles with dire threats from all sorts of newly discovered alien beings!

The Gods We Dreamt of as Children is another exciting entry in Scott Mari's Calliope series, picking up with Calliope's rescue of her mother and arch-nemesis, Mattias. Calliope continues to innovate and build. Friends and enemies, old and new, make their appearance. But we're back in space, and the discovery of even MORE alien races prepares the groundwork for future story development.

Mari does a stellar job developing the alien cultures of the Barovaults and the Larvaltics. They are suitably terrifying, and I enjoyed the plotlines told from their points of view. But the author doesn't stop there. Mari continues to introduce other intriguing and imaginative alien cultures to the mix. Readers will learn, right along with the characters themselves, a lot more about the aliens who practically destroyed the Earth of Calliope's past.

I'm suspicious of Calliope's mother's motives and actions. But I liked her storyline and inclusion in this series, and I want to know more about her time as a captive of the aliens. I'm super curious about how her teaming up with the experienced pilot, Shepherd, will work out because I liked that curmudgeonly character, too. I'm looking forward to more of these characters and their work assignment in intelligence.

Eylana and her family are some of my famous characters in the series. Eylana is fun, sassy, and sexy, and I liked that she has a prominent role in this series. Her sisters are up to their old tricks and, even though they had little "screen time," I found even the mention of them and what they are up to entertaining.

I did have an issue with dialogue in this book; it was confusing and hard to follow at times. I found this especially true when Calliope is talking with her mother. I often felt that their responses didn't make sense and didn't quite follow the conversational thread. I had to re-read passages several times to understand what they were saying, and I often wasn't successful. I had to forget it and move on.

The requisite climactic space battle doesn't occur until the very end of the book. Honestly, I felt like I really had to work for the pay-off this time. Battle scenes can often be confusing, and Mari is usually great at laying things out for the reader, but this time, the action seemed to stay chaotic. There's just a lot going on, and it covers a lot of territory. I'll admit I got lost with who was doing what where and whether or not things were working out or not. Still, the action is heart-pounding and exciting as it unfolds.

The Gods We Dreamt of as Children is the fourth book in Scott Mari's Calliope series. There is an emphasis on the development of space stations, expansion of the Space Force, and new ships and weaponry as the humans prepare for the aliens to bring the battle to them. There is little time spent on the characters' backstories, so the reader will need to be familiar with the characters beforehand. The author absolutely reinvigorates Calliope's story with all sorts of new and dire threats. This novel is a meaty addition to the series and not a standalone book, and I recommend it to readers who have enjoyed books 1 – 3 already.

I voluntarily reviewed this after receiving an Advanced Review Copy from Reedsy Discovery.

See my original review on Reedsy Discovery!

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