Stillwaters by Yvonne Anderson

A girl survives childhood abuse, joins the military, and finds love.

This is a hard-to-categorise science fiction. Written as a biography in first person, it follows one girl’s life as she recovers from a miserable childhood and finds a place in the world. Which isn’t Earth, though some aspects seem rather familiar. She joins the military, but I wouldn’t say this is military-SF: there’s a lack of people being shot. I’d be inclined to call it romance, but the romance kicks in fairly late on.

So this is unusual, and if you’re expecting lasers and spaceships you may be disappointed. But I enjoyed it. The first person voice is distinctive and natural, and from the start I wanted to know where this character was going. Although there’s not a great deal of action, I didn’t miss it.

Overall, a quiet but very interesting story centred on a great character. Well written and well edited, very readable throughout.

June 2018 update: the sequel, Citizen, is now out and is well worth reading if you enjoyed Stillwaters.

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