Persephone Station by Stina Leicht

Persephone Station, a seemingly backwater planet that has largely been ignored by the United Republic of Worlds becomes the focus for the Serrao-Orlov Corporation as the planet has a few secrets the corporation tenaciously wants to exploit.

Rosie—owner of Monk’s Bar, in the corporate town of West Brynner—caters to wannabe criminals and rich Earther tourists, of a sort, at the front bar. However, exactly two types of people drank at Monk’s back bar: members of a rather exclusive criminal class and those who sought to employ them.

Angel—ex-marine and head of a semi-organized band of beneficent criminals, wayward assassins, and washed up mercenaries with a penchant for doing the honorable thing—is asked to perform a job for Rosie. What this job reveals will affect Persephone and put Angel and her squad up against an army. Despite the odds, they are rearing for a fight with the Serrao-Orlov Corporation. For Angel, she knows that once honor is lost, there is no regaining it. That doesn’t mean she can’t damned well try.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Thank you to Saga Press for providing this ARC in exchange for an honest review! Persephone Station was released on January 5, 2021. 

I’ve been meaning to read Stina Leicht’s work for ages and when I got approved for an ARC for Persephone Station it seemed like fate. This book has kinda gotten lost in the chaos of everything that happened in January 2021. Which is a shame because it’s a really fun read.

Persephone Station has a good blend of action and emotion through the course of the book. Fans of Becky Chamber’s Wayfarers, Martha Wells’ Murderbot, and Alex White’s Salvager series will enjoy the excellent group dynamic between Angel and her crew, as well as the other characters. This is a found family story of sorts, where a number of small groups of friends and acquaintances come together due to circumstance.

There’s also a really good amount of action in the story. Competent characters against overwhelming odds are my jam and Leicht delivers. It’s also rather unusual to have a space opera follow older characters. Angel and her crew would probably really prefer to retire (their knees are starting to go). I really liked how Leicht showcased the dynamics of an older cast and a crew that knew each other for quite a while, as well as balancing other characters who weren’t as close to Angel.

Overall, Persephone Station is a fun, fast-paced space adventure with a good mix of hard hitting moments, gun fights, and compelling characters. The book is standalone, which is great if you don’t want to dive into a new series right now. This is a really fun book with a satisfying ending, although I would happily read more books set in this world.

QUICK EDIT:

Only after publishing this review did I realize that I didn’t talk about how queer Persephone Station is. I read a lot of queer sff, and am at the point in my reading history that I know exactly the type of book I want and don’t bother with ones I’m not interested in. At this point it’s strange for me to read sci-fi that isn’t queer. This is a feature, not a bug, of the books I read, and love, and scream about on the internet.

But I also know that many people don’t have the same luck as me, that they’re actively looking for queer books. To those readers, this book is queer as fuck. It has a primarily female cast, f/f relationships, and nonbinary rep.

For people looking to diversify their reading, go read Persephone Station. For people looking for excellent sff with action, a good cast, and compelling plot, go read Persephone Station. For people who are looking to see themselves in sci-fi, go read Persephone Station.

Goodreads | Author Website | Bookshop.org


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