This Chick Read: The V’Dan (First Salik War #2) by Jean Johnson

Grand Ambassador of the Terran Motherworld, Jacaranda Makenzie, has arrived with her Gestalt partner, Prince, and Captain of the V’Dan space force, Li’eth, to his home world to introduce his people to their human cousins the Terrans. Jackie brings with her technology that will help the V’Dan fight and possibly win a war against the Salik, a non-human species who is terrorizing the universe. She and Li’eth as Gestalt partners need to be close to each other as their powers grow. Prophesied to bring peace to the universe there is a lot riding on their success in uniting their two races.

It’s been a couple of years since I read the first novel in this series, Terrans, where we were introduced to Jackie and Li’eth but in a Terran setting. Li’eth was welcomed onto their planet and treated honorably. When Jackie and her crew escort Li’eth to V’Dan, the similarities between their own people are only separated by a discoloration on the skin of the V’Dan’s called jungen, which all V’Dan receive when they reach puberty. Terrans don’t have these marks, and because of that the V’Dan’s treat them as children disrespecting their people. As their leader, Jackie is faced with a cultural and racial insensitivity that her people have not seen in over 100 years.

This book, written prior to the Black Lives Matter movement uses the V’Dan’s skin discoloration to make some interesting parallels to the struggles we’ve faced to eliminate degradation due to skin color. It was interesting to read a science-fiction novel that chose that subject (among others) to take a stand and I relished every time Jackie as Grand Ambassador struck down this insensitivity and prejudice. I wish it were that easy today.

The V’Dan as a lot of sci-fi is, can be very technology heavy and there were pages that I skimmed to the plot to move forward a bit quicker but when the story called for action the plot moved along quite quickly. In addition to the technology-laden paragraphs there were a lot of politic-speak between the different alien races who were in an Alliance together. That too, made for slow points but ultimately picked up when Jackie got to kick-butt and smack down some furry or many-eyed creature for viewing her as a child. I admit, I did get a kick out of those moments.

I really enjoyed the more psychic moments in the book. Li’eth and Jackie were a solid pairing and I liked their hidden conversations, spoken mind to mind as they could talk freely where no one could hear them and those conversations gave insights into the actions going on around them. Theirs was not the only emotional connections but certainly as the main character theirs was the most prevalent.

If you like sci-fi and don’t mind techo-jargon then you may enjoy this series. I immediately picked up the third and last book in the series because I liked this book so much and would recommend it to anyone who thinks they may like a story that while a little older, runs parallel to the story lines of today. Granted, I do hope there aren’t some tentacled species out there hoping to inhabit our planet, breed humans so that they can eat us, so there is that. 🙂 ❤️❤️❤️❤️

Click this link to purchase!* The V’Dan (First Salik War)

Copyright 2021 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

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This Chick Read: The Terrans (The First Salik War #1) by Jean Johnson

It’s been a few months since I’ve read a science fiction novel. The Terrans was recommended to me a long time ago by my sister who is seldom wrong when it comes to book recommendations. I like science fiction but have to really be in the mood because sometimes the book may be more technical than I’m comfortable with, but The Terrans was a great balance of sci-fi imagery, technology, and a Star Trek like “going where no man has gone before” adventure.

Jacaranda MacKenzie finds herself drawn back into service after retiring to her home in the Hawaiian islands. Having strong psychic tendencies, language skills, and proven psychic fighting techniques she is now on a mission as an Ambassador because her face was seen in psychic precognitive visions as being important in a future war. On their first mission they come upon an alien life form called the Salik who have human captives that her team must save. After reaching out telepathically to the humans leader Li’eth, she gathers that the Salik are not friendly aliens and in fact are only looking for their next meal. Humans are a tasty treat, and live humans are their preferred meal. Saving Li’eth and his team who are human, but not Terrans, is the first contact with another life force that the Terrans have ever had. They realize pretty quickly that both races have qualities that are needed on the other side and can make them allies in the war against the Salik.

Jackie’s a really unique lady! She’s a linguist, and her thought process on how to quickly learn V’Dan (Li’eth’s planet, language, and people) teach the V’Dan her own language and then also the cultural proprieties could’ve been really time consuming. Thank goodness she was telepathic and could skip a lot of steps! She knew how to speak to people without being offensive, yet still be warm and welcoming. Underneath all of these kind of technical aspects to her personality was also the fact that she was mostly Polynesian. I don’t know that I’ve ever read a science fiction book that had a Hawaiian main character? It really added a level of depth to her understanding of body language due to her hula dancing training. Her ancestors way of story telling with body movements. I really enjoyed her character alot.

Li’eth was also what you’d want your hero to look and act like. As the Captain of his ship he had a commanding presence. Like Jackie, he knew how to act with other cultures. He and Jackie had to interact with each other quite a bit as they were the two highest ranking people on the ship. She “downloaded” his language and had to do a Spock type mind meld to get that done relatively quick. The two of them talked telepathically and developed a bond that drew them together. It was natural that they started to have feelings for each other, however their titles made it a politically bad choice.

As you would imagine with finding a new race of human’s there was a lot of political talk about how to handle what, who and how far. Even with that jargon, I still really enjoyed the story. I think as I read further into this series Jackie and Li’eth may grow on me even more. He did well in her world, I’m looking forward to seeing how Jackie handles immersion into his alien culture.

If you like science fiction, I’d really recommend the Terrans. It’s a pretty soft immersion into this genre and is more story than techno jargon. The characters were developed well, and I really wanted to know more about them and follow their growth into the next book. ❤️❤️❤️❤️

The Terrans

Click this link to purchase!* The Terrans (First Salik War)

Copyright 2018 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate