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Reviewed by Vincent Dublado for Readers' Favorite
The first book in A.N. Sage’s Kartega series begins with a smooth narrative that will give you an up-close and personal look at the main protagonist. Kartega starts with a young, lone mechanic named Sid, who lives a solitary life aboard an aging spaceship she named Rusty that orbits the Neostar where she is forbidden to go. Sid is labeled a Domer, a derogatory term at those deemed conspirators against the queen. Sid has occasional communication with Colton, the general of her decrepit ship. When Rusty breaks down and requires an essential valve, she has no choice but to leave her ship and go to Neostar. Here she will discover hard truths about her identity and what it means to be a Stardaughter: a girl of magic that has not been chipped; a true daughter of the star.
As the protagonist in this young adult novel, Sid may come across to some readers as impulsive and naïve. But the reader, in following Sid, is likely to feel sympathetic upon discovering that Sid is who she is because of her difficult past. Nobody wants to be held prisoner aboard a ship and be forbidden to use their magical gift. This is enough for readers to give her a chance to prove her worth. The early parts of Kartega are a study in isolation as Sid lives alone in a spaceship and converses with no one but Rusty. It is when she lands on Neostar that her real adventure begins. How she will wield her gift that she was never allowed to use makes for edge of the seat reading as Sid reclaims her rightful place among her people.