Scales Of Empire – Kylie Chan

When Rudi pointed out to me that Kylie Chan is a local, not just Australian local, but an hour away down the Gold Coast local, I was immediately keen to support my compatriot. When I read space ships and “a royal family of dragons” on the back cover, I was sold!

I was immediately taken by the half-Chinese/half-African, super smart, ambitious and determined young female protagonist.

This is the story of Corporal Jian Choumali as she embarked on a mission to save humanity from extinction. As the first generation ship prepared to land after a three-hundred year interstellar journey, and many Earth nations raced to establish colonies on strategic planets, things of course, went horribly wrong. And a dragon, yes, an emissary from a highly sophisticated empire of dragons, “came to the rescue”, but what do the dragons want in return for access to their super-advanced technology that will save and forever change humanity?

What followed was a fun, intergalactic expedition that explored many important topics of our time. Apart from an array of ethics and moral dilemma, we also had mind control, invasion, consent, reproductive rights, and genocide, all amidst a backdrop of an inevitable climate catastrophe plus a species of narcissistic cats wrecking havoc to boot!

One of my favourite aspects about science fiction is its unique ability to tackle thought-provoking topics and ask big, challenging questions. Somehow when these all-too-familiar conflicts are communicated by aliens, it serves as a friendly and approachable way to broach these difficult subjects.

Not only did this book succeed in challenging the reader on many big issues, it was also the most diverse book I have read to date! The gender and ethnic diversities truly reflected contemporary societies, and the relationship diversity certainly pushed the envelope. All of which I welcome and applaud.

As exciting as it was travelling through the galaxy with dragons, the story took a slight dip towards the end, but an unexpected twist injected it with new energy and left me keen for the sequel!

This was a fun read and it is always a delight to read books that spell with all of the vowels and use the metric system. However, having just read the works by a few masters of words, the difference between a writer and a writer’s writer dawned on me part way through reading this book.

That said, a good story is a good story, and one that has engaging plots, stimulating topics, awesome characters with good humour a plenty and dragons? Now that is a good time in any galaxy.

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With Love and Positivity,


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