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Song of Scarabaeus (Scarabaeus #1)
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Apr 2013: Ghost Planet > Official Discussion Thread for Song of Scarabaeus *SPOILERS*

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message 1: by Felicia, Grand Duchess (new) - rated it 4 stars

Felicia (feliciaday) | 740 comments Mod
This is the official discussion thread for our ALT book in April: Song of Scarabaeus by Sara Creasy!


Brittany (nerdyspinster) | 255 comments I'm so excited we're reading this book this coming month! I loved it the first time I read it and I can't wait to read it again. And maybe it'll motivate me to finally read the sequel, since it's been sitting on the back burner in my kindle.


message 3: by Felicia, Grand Duchess (new) - rated it 4 stars

Felicia (feliciaday) | 740 comments Mod
Yeah it took me forever to read the sequel but it was actually excellent!


Brittany (nerdyspinster) | 255 comments Does the sequel have any sexy times, or is it full of UST? If I recall correctly, the first book only had one scene that I would consider a sex scene, but it was pretty tame when compared to other books we've read for the book club.


message 5: by Felicia, Grand Duchess (new) - rated it 4 stars

Felicia (feliciaday) | 740 comments Mod
These books this month are def more
Romance oriented. I'll go more steamy in May again.


Jute | 238 comments I really enjoyed this book.

I have only a couple of comments... I hate, hate, hate cliffhangers... So I'll be reading the second book. I only hope that one doesn't end in a cliff hanger as well.

I loved the characters. I was however often confused by the author's science. I never really got a complete picture of what the main character did to create the planets. I understood that she was manipulating things, but I had a hard time picturing exactly how this was working.

Other than that I really liked the book and even if it wasn't a cliffhanger I would read the sequel.


Anna | 135 comments Wow, loved it! Yes, clear echoes of Grimspace, which I also liked, but even better! Loved the characters, exciting story, fun!

I learned something about myself reading this book: I WAY prefer the working class/slave/outlaw male love interest type to the super powerful/rich/duke-y type. Don't get me wrong, I like power in a male character, but I way prefer that power to come in the form of skills/cleverness than money/social connections. I think that's why I like outlander, and even master of crows had that a bit... and part of why I hated naked in death, and why-even though I didn't mind Gabriel's ghost and even liked the sequel Hope's folly-I didn't like them as much as this one.

I think Finn may be in my top 5 now, even without the actual sexy-times, the scene in the skiff was HOT! I feel like the author did a good job at building and maintaining tension between these two characters.

There were a handful of moments where I wanted to yell at Edie... "No! He told you to stay on the bridge! You're weakened! Don't follow him and then say 'just tell me how I can help,' you can help by keeping your fragile ass on the bridge!" But it wasn't that bad.

I also, like the previous comment, thoughts some of the science was a little not fleshed out, and I'd add to that that the music metaphor got a little tired, but it didn't bother me too much.

I immediately started the sequel upon finishing. Great pick!


Kamil | 938 comments don't you get the firefly ff vibe from this book?


Alex Mayer (alex_mayer) | 209 comments What an excellent book, although I thought the character of Rackham was not as well developed as he could be considering the role he played in the end. Also I may be mistaken but was that not the name of the teacher for Ender in Ender's Game?

Otherwise I really enjoyed reading it and finished in just over 24 hours, since it was so good. I really enjoyed the interaction between Edie and Finn a lot.


Mel (booksandsundry) (booksandsundry) I thoroughly enjoyed this. The soft build up of romance was nicely handled with payoff I hope in the second book. The world and the science is what really sold this book for me though, I would have happily read this as a Sword and Laser pick instead.

I think this book was very well balanced as an alt for Ghost Planet, great picks thanks Felicia!


message 11: by Justine (new) - added it

Justine | 45 comments When I read the main pick I thought we were in for a good month, but this? Excellent, mind-bending Sci-Fi.

Years back I read a manga - japanese-style comic for lack of a better explanation for those who don't know the term - with a theme very similar to this. It's made me a bit wary of works using the 'terraforming' trope - using it often comes with a very dark outlook on humanity and puts characters in a certain edgy mindset.
Fortunately here it turned out to be the book's strong-point. The world-building pulled me in, even if it took a while to get used to all the technical jargon. At some point I even reread some of the tech-descriptions which I'm not usually inclined to do - to understand Edie's love for that one planet and get a better sense of her abilities.
Space travel was definitely also one of the great aspects of the book. Not glorious by any means, filled with the usual tension between the crew members, it had me rooting for all of them to survive.
It's definitely an adult book - not just because of the world-building but because of the relationship dynamics. For once the characters didn't just fool around with each other on the first occasion in the heat of passion :) a nice change of pace after the hot and steamy romance of succubus blues or other books. I wasn't entirely sold on Edie's constant 'we can't have a relationship because you won't be a good bodyguard.', but I completely agreed with the 'we shouldn't add to this already impossible situation, survival and freeing ourselves first.'.
The other side of this was that there were so few playful, light-hearted interactions between them and signs of attraction from Finn (other than the being-left-in-a-skiff-adrift-in-the-node interlude) that I found their mutual attraction hardly believable. Partly that's because I couldn't bring myself to care much for Finn. I would've pictured them more like a good team, albeit a young one.

I'm definitely going to pick up the 2nd book in the series and see where Edie's abilities take her :) Hopefully I'll warm up to Finn along the way.


Kamil | 938 comments Justine wrote: "When I read the main pick I thought we were in for a good month, but this? Excellent, mind-bending Sci-Fi.

Years back I read a manga - japanese-style comic for lack of a better explanation for tho..."


there's no way terraforming could be bad... unless we count Miranda


Ariel Stirling | 90 comments Kamil - I couldn't help but notice the Firefly similarities as well. I think both Joss Whedon and Sara Creasy captured the dynamics of a crew living together on a ship, isolated from the rest of the universe, very well. The big difference being that in Creasy's world it wasn't particularly willing cohabitation.

I loved this book and thanks to the cliffhanger ending I've already downloaded the sequel. Can't leave those crazy kids hanging out there.

My only complaint is the overuse of tech lingo. It took a few chapters to get a good enough grip on the new language to read it easily. Otherwise the worlds were interesting, the characters complex, the plot twisty, and the action never seemed to stop (to the point I'm pretty sure they'll all start hallucinating from sleep dep in the first chapter of the next book).

I found the slow development of the attraction between Edie and Finn very believable. Remember she's a Crib employee with a soft heart but a healthy concern for her safety, and he's an enslaved criminal/ ex-military who's been through hell. It makes sense that they would take time to develop a bond of trust and mutual survival before acknowledging that they care for each other, and are attracted. I find Finn super sexy in a dark, brooding way; with a soft side that pops up here and there.

My point being: I loved it!


RogueHireling (rogue_hireling) | 76 comments I feel like I'm reading a different book, as this one reads very much like a study on male dominating abusive relationships.


Kamil | 938 comments TFGamer wrote: "I feel like I'm reading a different book, as this one reads very much like a study on male dominating abusive relationships."

it's more of a "women,let's try to survive this crappy situation"


RogueHireling (rogue_hireling) | 76 comments Really? The main guy hates her through the first half of the book and only shows any sign of life other then a horrible disposition after he makes sure she will not use ANY power she has over him. That doesn't seem like a "let's just survive this crappy situation" sort of arrangement. Its a "you will submit to my will for I will not save you unless i can be in charge" sort of situation, which totally undermines her supposed bad ass skills.

Its also sad that the female characters can't find a bond. AT least they aren't actively pitted against each other. Yeah the other woman warns her to stay quiet and just accept the abuse (from the "boss" types on the ship).


message 17: by Anna (new) - rated it 5 stars

Anna | 135 comments Wow @TFGamer, I totally can't see what your describing. He's a slave! He's just been unwillingly tethered to her. If he tries to leave he will die! He doesn't want her to zap his brain! I see absolutely no reason why he shouldn't feel resistant to her using that power over him. He never forces himself or his affections on her. He ends up building an attachment, but it's wary, and they had to build a lot of trust between them with not a lot of reason to. If I were him I wouldn't want to give her the time of day! She's a symbol, and the mechanism, of his slavery.


Candice Nunu (nunu_noodles) Got bored waiting for my copy of this and decided to look at this thread! Why oh why!!!! Now I'm going to be all conflicted before I even start! *sigh*
I really have to stop spoiling things for myself.


Julie (subtleseasonings) | 88 comments Just finished it, it was an okay read but I was bored at times and even started skimming some of the paragraphs about the tech stuff. None of the characters were that interesting to me, and having Scarabaeus mutate just seemed weird to me. Just overall the plot didn't appeal to me. I won't be continuing this series.


RogueHireling (rogue_hireling) | 76 comments @Anna, I did say in my previous post that I felt like I was reading a different book. =D

Sure he was a slave and treated horribly and is understandably upset. But that's not how the author sets him up. When we meet him in the abduction, he is calm and collected and trustworthy. Yet on the ship he becomes a totally different person, neither calm nor clearly trustworthy as indicated by his willingness to sacrifice everything to insure she not use her ONLY tool against him. Frankly I think of this as the opposite of trustworthy. He is certainly not making the best of a crappy situation and seems focused on his own survival first and formost.

'But he has no choice', ah well neither does she and she has shown far more willingness to trust, despite his incredible dislike of her. 'But he has been a slave and mistreated', well the same argument could be made for her and yet she goes above and beyond to save him. He is just as much a symbol of her own slavery as he is to her, in fact more so since he was actively trying to escape and she got unwillingly abducted.

I basically dislike him and find her care for him misplaced. Maybe this is due to the author not including his side enough in the story, but frankly I'm glad there isn't much romance.


Ariel Stirling | 90 comments TFGamer- Huh. I'm always surprised by the variety of interpretations there can be of a single written work. I may have to read it again and see if I can figure out what led you to see Finn this way, cuz I just didn't see that at ALL. I will admit, he was gruff, but that seemed to lessen over time. Haller, on the other hand was a complete douche, and most of the other male characters may as well have been hat-racks.


message 22: by Richelle (new)

Richelle Dietz | 4 comments There was something that I found lacking in this book. I feel like there was too much history to be crammed in at once so one never could really embrace the main character and her hardships that were meant to set her as a fellow outcast. I do like the difference in the relationship of the two main characters compared to other books presented thus far. I feel the author captured the natural progression of such circumstances realistically. Overall though im not impressed by the book. It wasnt established enough for me to enjoy it as a good fiction read and there were not enough "sexy times" for me to not care.


message 23: by Audra (new) - rated it 1 star

Audra (unicornfan85) I didn't see any romance what so ever. I guess it's more in later books, but I don't plan on picking them up. I had to spread reading it over a few days, but I didn't really want to finish it. Just not my kind of read.


message 24: by Dawn (new) - rated it 4 stars

Dawn (wingedangeldawn) | 12 comments So I just got this book from the library and have just started it but what I find kinda funny is the front cover. I had to do a double take cause the guy on the cover has a striking resemblance to Jay Ryan from Beauty and the Beast.


message 25: by Philip (new)

Philip Jackson (phillymcgee) | 3 comments :( can't get the alt book on kindle in the UK either :(


message 26: by Lee (new) - rated it 4 stars

Lee (luneray) | 47 comments Kamil wrote: "don't you get the firefly ff vibe from this book?"

There were definitely elements that reminded me of Firefly but not in a bad way. Those same elements (terraforming, space pirates, and the male hero whose downtrodden past has not completely destroyed his genuinely good character) were not unique to Firefly so I didn't find them derivative.


message 27: by Jonathan (new) - added it

Jonathan (calijonathan) I just started reading this book and the first chapter left me confused. I'm trying to decipher all the jargon. While I admit it adds to the whole Sci/Fi other-worldly environment, I'm hoping that some of the terms will be explained as I can only handle so much "She trogged the whatchamacallit with the blangfuff and aligned the whosiwhatsit on the widget to achieve optimal glangsnorting"

*blink* Huh?


message 28: by Jonathan (new) - added it

Jonathan (calijonathan) Felicia wrote: "These books this month are def more
Romance oriented. I'll go more steamy in May again."


Where's the Like button? :)


Shannon Warkentin It's interesting to read all the different options about this book. I absolutely loved everything about it. The characters were interesting. There was romance, a slow build more to a caring about one another level for now but some sexual tension. The action sequences were well written and kept me on the edge of my seat. The planet was beautiful and terrifying. I didn't expect some of the story the author through my way making it not predictable. I bought the second book already to see what happens next. I almost wish this had been the main pick. I thought this was a better book than Ghost Planet.
I loved Finn, he was a very layered character. I was a sucker for him after the scene where he saved her from that Eco-rads all shot full of poison. It was awesome!
I'm a big fan of SciFi so the terms didn't bug me but I do wish she had a small dictionary for some of the terms. Especially at the beginning.
I could totally picture this book being an awesome movie or TV series.
Have I said AWESOME enough times. Sorry for all of those. :-p


message 30: by suzy (new) - rated it 4 stars

suzy (jenesaishuh) | 3 comments I have to say I loved this book. I have a sort of love/meh relationship with Sci-Fi because my eyes tend to glaze over when authors get too heavy into talking about technology. So I did find myself starting to skim sections about the BRATS and so on, but the story itself is so strong that I found I didn't mind that side of the book as much as I usually would.

I love what a badass the main character was, and I liked the push/pull relationship between her and Finn. Space pirates, as always, was also a lot of fun.

The only problem with this month's books is that I now have a Vaginal Sci-Fi addiction, so... THANKS A LOT, FELICIA.


Candice Nunu (nunu_noodles) Well I really liked it. It was sci-fi, but not over the top, there was some romance tease but they didn't jump into the sack straight away so it means when it does happen in the series it'll be properly set up (I hope). I even think Edie and Finn acted within their characters with regards to the whole splinter situation. It was sort of like when you feel a bruise coming up on your skin and you keep poking it even though it hurts, they were just poking at it in different ways. Understandable really.


Andrea (dodgergirl99) | 39 comments I'm finding it really difficult to get into this book. I'm only about 10% in and thinking about saying eff it. Trying to power through, but the whole setup is just taking too long to pull me in.


Shannon Warkentin @Andrea: if you can get through the initial SciFi word filled parts to around 25-35% in you won't be sorry. It has some very exciting parts starting there.


message 34: by Dajinxed1 (new)

Dajinxed1 | 95 comments I really liked the way that her emotional overflow between the two splinters wasn't used to bring them closer together.

That when she didn't control her emotions it interfered with his ability to concentrate and function effectively.

I'm a fan of Feehan's Dark series but I am finding the emotional and mental links making everything alright bit getting old.


Andrea (dodgergirl99) | 39 comments Ok, I made to 33% and I've officially been pulled in!


Shannon Warkentin @Andrea: Yay! I knew you would.


message 37: by Brie (new)

Brie (wwwgoodreadscomprofilebrie) | 5 comments On page 600 and still no sexitimez!!! What the what. This book rocks but I need to get MY rocks off!


message 38: by Brie (new)

Brie (wwwgoodreadscomprofilebrie) | 5 comments Alex wrote: "What an excellent book, although I thought the character of Rackham was not as well developed as he could be considering the role he played in the end. Also I may be mistaken but was that not the ..."

I also totally got the Enders game vibe with this one! With Rackham (also a war hero...), the way the technology is described and that Tilt game. The CCU totally reads like the IF too.


message 39: by Jypsel (new) - added it

Jypsel | 61 comments I'm only about 40% of the way through, but I am so disappointed they never have sex! I flipped through to the end to see if they ever do and they don't! Boooo. Haha. I am so much more attracted to Finn than I was to Murphy from Ghost Planet, so I would like to see some sexytimes with him! C'est la vie!

Has anyone read the second book? Is there any sexytimes in that one?

Now, as for the writing and plot: Holy crap, I love it! I think this book is MUCH stronger than the main pick. I was a little confused at first with all the jargon being thrown around so I can understand if people feel put off by that, but keep at it! It's a slow reveal and I think the author did it masterfully.


message 40: by Anna (new) - rated it 5 stars

Anna | 135 comments @Juliebird I sent you a private message to answer your question so as not to spoil for others.


message 41: by Jute (new) - rated it 3 stars

Jute | 238 comments I want to know if the second book is also a cliffhanger.


message 42: by Anna (new) - rated it 5 stars

Anna | 135 comments No, the second book does not end in a cliff-hanger.


Katie (katie_jones) | 348 comments I really enjoyed this book too! I thought the gradual relationship being built between the main characters was completely realistic, and although some sexy-times would have been nice, the fact that there wasn't any really amped up the sexual tension and (again) made the relationship more believable.

I thought the world-building was amazing here. It was a struggle at first to keep up with all of the tech jargon, but the language was CONSISTENT, which went a long way in helping me keep up and really end up enjoying the Sci-Fi aspect of the story.

The only thing I didn't love, is that there is no clear ending (cliffhanger), which forces you to read on in the series if you want to see any resolution. I hate when authors do this, because I want to pick up the second book on the merits of the first, not because it's really the second half of the first book. does that make sense? I want a fully-formed story, not bits and pieces in several books. Now I have to read the main pic before I'll have time to come back and find out how this story ends...


Kamil | 938 comments Anna wrote: "@Juliebird I sent you a private message to answer your question so as not to spoil for others."

do we get sexytime in book 2?


Frakki Karu | 509 comments I loved these books -- yes I had to read the second one right away (to find out if Finn was as sexy in bed). **Spoiler: sexy times, yes. Bed, no.**

I did skim through a lot of the technobabble, but I loved the zig-zagging story. In the main pick, Ghost Protocol, I figured out how it would end a couple chapters in. This one was a lot more complex. You knew in broad strokes where it needed to go, but it was a fun ride getting there.

After i read that the author was Australian, I started giving everyone an accent while reading. So many of the names had that Aussie sound to them, especially the ships.


Kellios I loved this book and can't wait to read the next one! I loved the characters and the world is so rich in detail. I couldn't put it down!


Rachele | 28 comments I also enjoyed this book more than Ghost Planet. Though, I read the second book immediately afterward in hopes of getting to the sexy times! I highly recommend reading book 2 (the series is only 2 books long, no danger of getting sucked in to an epic series)! Song is really only the beginning of the story, and Children continues and wraps things up nicely. In my mind, Finn just gets sexier the more you learn about him. And Edie grows up quite a bit, and learns a lot about herself. If you're even sorta interested in how the story ends, you should read book 2.


message 48: by Jypsel (new) - added it

Jypsel | 61 comments Do you guys remember that smutty-as-anything book we read last month, Pleasure Unbound? I totally just started the second book in that series to compensate for the lack of sex in this book.

A year ago I had never even read a romance novel! What has happened to me!? LOL.


Kamil | 938 comments Juliebird wrote: "Do you guys remember that smutty-as-anything book we read last month, Pleasure Unbound? I totally just started the second book in that series to compensate for the lack of sex in this book.

A yea..."


here no one will judge you for reading a romance novel, you are among friends


message 50: by Dawn (new) - rated it 4 stars

Dawn (wingedangeldawn) | 12 comments Just finished and I really want to pick up the next book. I had a little bit of trouble at times following the mechanics behind everything worked but the author did a good job of making sure that you get the gist of it without having to really understand. Only complaint...no sexy times. Other than that I would recommend this series to others.


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