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Earth Flight (Earth Girl, Book 3)
By Janet Edwards
Reviewed by Karl Wolff
In the 28th century, humanity has colonized the stars. Through interstellar portal technology, colonization occurred at a rapid pace. But it wasn't without costs and controversy. Earth Flight, by Janet Edwards, humanizes the personal tragedy of those left behind on Earth. The third novel of the series, following Earth Girl and Earth Star, it follows the life of Jarra, one of the Handicapped, as she strives to overcome her disability and her status as a celebrity.
The third volume throws in several complications to Jarra's situation. These include an alien sphere orbiting above Earth, causing all manner of anxiety and fear. Jarra wants to be part of the Alien Contact team, but her disability prevents her from portalling beyond the confines of Earth. Throw in a controversial romance, abstruse planetary clan rituals and political factions, and the novel has plenty of balls in the air.
The action moves swiftly as Jarra gets attacked from those who don't want her to succeed. Janet Edwards captures the everyday inconveniences of disability and the costs of bigotry to a developing individual. Edwards also creates a plausible slang and a variety of different cultures in her world-building. While I have not read the first two installments and YA fiction really isn't my thing, I did enjoy reading Earth Flight. It was nice to read about teens facing challenges in a science fiction setting without it being yet another garden variety dystopia. What is like when your own immune system prevents you from exploring the stars? Earth Flight struggles to solve that question.
Out of 10/8.5