City of Deceit is the third book in the Hollow Moon series, a space opera tale set in a fascinating future world where India has a colony on another planet and some of the characters live in a man-made hollow moon.
The world building is excellent, the characters intriguing and the action a mix of drama and an occasional scene of pure slapstick that had me chuckling away. The prose is also excellent and includes some real gems, such as:
“The ship’s extra-dimensional drive whirred into life, punched a ten-light-year hole through reality and whisked the spacecraft away on a vomit-inducing sideways roll through space-time.”
Though this is essentially a light hearted tale, it has—as all good space opera has—a dark underside; in this case it’s one of political wheeling and dealing and secret agendas.
Though you could read this as a stand-alone novel, it will undoubtably be better if you’ve read the previous two books. Without the previous books the beginning may feel a little scattered. I have read the earlier books and enjoyed them thoroughly, so this was like saying hello again to old friends.
If you like space opera, then I recommend this series. It’s well-crafted and highly entertaining with quirky characters and creepy aliens. The series is suitable for both adults and teens.
Raja Surya, young heir to the throne of the moon of Yuanshi, cannot stay out of trouble for long. Zotz Wak, intrepid boy inventor otherwise known as The Flying Fox, decides Earth is the place to become a man. Together they must battle the dystopian darkness of 23rd-century London: a city of deceit, under the thumb of corporations, its people barricaded behind flood walls, bewitched by the hypnotic holoverse and worse.
The United Nations is deciding the fate of Surya’s world. The Que Qiao Corporation is using the threat of alien monsters to call for war. Ravana O’Brien, the heroine of their previous adventures, is stricken with a mystery illness and her hollow moon home has problems of its own. Surya never thought he would be in the captain’s chair aboard the first ever interstellar battleship. Zotz never expected to find himself accused of being a spy and terrorist at the centre of political skulduggery in London. The far-flung worlds of the five systems would never be the same again. Taranis, the dark priest of destiny, has returned.