Arminzerella's Reviews > Spacer and Rat

Spacer and Rat by Margaret Bechard
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** spoiler alert ** Jack is looking forward to leaving Freedom Station (a space station). He’s lived there his whole life, apprenticed to Gert, who owns the best pub on Freedom, and he’s about to leave for a new position (also in food service – his Company assigned calling) when he meets Kit. Kit is from Earth and was traveling with her father when he died mid-flight (from contaminants in his sleepbag). Without any credit to her name, Kit is stranded on Freedom (she’s what’s called a ‘rat’ by the ‘spacers’ – those that live on space stations) with a maintenance bot her father secretly and illegally modified (making it simultaneously intelligent and self-aware). There are some not so nice people who are after Kit and her bot, and Jack accidentally gets himself involved when he attempts to make a little extra credit on the side working for one of them. After he meets the bot (Waldo) and hears Kit’s story, however, he changes his mind about the ‘rat,’ and decides he wants to help them escape. It will be dangerous, but Jack is determined to succeed.

This is a short, fast-paced, science fiction story, where spacers and earthies are at loggerheads. It’s a little spare (at 183 pages), but the immediate story and characters pull you right into their world. The ending is somewhat abrupt and disappointing (Waldo gets away, but Kit and Jack are slated to return to Freedom , where it will be business as usual), and one wants a little more – what happens next? Margaret Bechard leaves some clues (Waldo has big plans), but it looks like this one might be a standalone!

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