COYOTE HORIZON by Allen M. Steele

Book Quote:

“He knew that it wouldn’t be long before Joe discovered that he was gone. Indeed, the parole officer was probably already on his way to Hawk’s apartment; once he used his badge to get the landlord to unlock his door, Bairns would find the flat just as he’d last seen it, excerpt for the severed bracelet and discarded patch lying on the table. But the dresser would be empty and a bag would be missing, and the only other evidence that Hawk had once lived there would be his customs uniform, neatly folded on his bed.

… As the fishing boat sailed out into the harbor, Hawk took a moment to gaze back at New Brighton. One last look, then he deliberately turned away from its tenements and smoke. “

Book Review:

Review by Ann Wilkes (MAY 27, 2010)

Coyote Horizon continues the story of the human settlers on Coyote, a moon of the planet Bear in the 47 Ursae Majoris system. Hawk Thompson, nephew of former president, Carlos Montero, is on parole after spending time in jail for killing his abusive father. As the story opens, he has a boring, dead-end job as customs inspector at the spaceport. “His name was Hawk Thompson, and he’d killed his father. And now he was waiting to die.” That line cracked me up. I’m guessing Steele is a fellow Princess Bride fan.

Hawk’s job becomes more bearable when he has someone to go home to: Melissa, a neighbor he met when he rescued her from a beating.

Carlos Montero asks Hawk to conduct his customs inspection of the hjadd Cultural Ambassador near his ship rather than in the terminal like the average traveler. With his boss’ permission, he meets the ambassador with his uncle a short distance from his ship.

That short meeting with the alien changes the course of Hawk’s life. The hjadd ambassador gives him a book, the Sa’ Tong, which is an interactive manual to the philosophical beliefs of the hjadd and most star faring peoples in that part of the galaxy.

Hawk invites Melissa to join him in his search for guidance to deal with his new found knowledge. His mission intersects with that of a small group led by Joseph Walking Star Cassidy. Walking Star and his associates created a remote commune where, with the help of the indigenous pseudowasps, they have learned telepathy. It is Walking Star who explains to Hawk that by giving the Sa’ Tong to him, the emissary was choosing him to be the chaaz’ maha, the spiritual teacher who would bring those beliefs to humanity.

While Hawk is becoming the chaaz’ maha, several main characters join an Exploratory Expedition to circumnavigate the planet on its Great Equatorial River. Steele draws their fates together, but is clearly not done with them. The story continues in Coyote Destiny.

Unrest on Earth results in an influx of immigrants from Earth that Coyote is not prepared to adequately feed and shelter. The people of Coyote must welcome refugees from the very Union on Earth which refused to recognize its sovereignty.

Coyote Horizon is a space western rich in atmosphere, with believable characters who adapt and evolve. If Coyote were a real place, I’d be on the next transport. And I’d know my way around and recognize some of the locals. Steele creates a world I love to immerse myself in.

AMAZON READER RATING: stars-4-0from 9 readers
PUBLISHER: Ace; Reprint edition (January 26, 2010)
REVIEWER: Ann Wilkes
EXTRAS: Excerpt

Ann Wilkes’ interview with Allen M. Steele


Hyperion by Dan Simmons

Mars Life by Ben Bova


Near Space Series:

Coyote Trilogy:

Coyote Universe:

Coyote Chronicles:

Coyote Novella:

Short Stories:

  • Rude Astronauts (1992)
  • All-American Alien Boy (1996)
  • Sex and Violence in Zero G: The Complete Near-Space Stories (1998)
  • American Beauty (2003)
  • The Last Science Fiction Writer (2008)

  • May 27, 2010 В· Judi Clark В· No Comments
    Tags:  В· Posted in: Scifi, y Award Winning Author

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