Jade Darcy and the Affair of Honor

Rated 5.00/5 based on 1 review
Jade Darcy, a computer-augmented mercenary, turns down what she considers a suicide assignment: traveling to an enslaved world to assassinate one of its military leaders. But then she learns there's someone looking for her--someone with the potential to expose her mysterious past, with possibly fatal results. All of a sudden, a suicide mission looks positively appetizing.... More
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About Stephen Goldin

STEPHEN GOLDIN is a Nebula Award finalist science fiction and fantasy writer who was born in 1947 in the city of Philadelphia. When he was 13, his parents moved to California and, upon reflection, he decided to accompany them. It was a lucky thing he did, too; otherwise, when he went to college, the commute to UCLA would have been quite difficult. He eventually graduated from UCLA with a Bachelor's degree in Astronomy.

His first job out of college was as a civilian space scientist for the U.S. Navy. The urge to write was strong, though, and after several years he left to try writing full time. He only regretted the move every other Thursday, when he would have gotten paid.

After several years of genteel poverty, he took a job as writer/editor for a pornographic humor paper, the San Francisco Ball. In retrospect, this was a great crucible; because of deadline pressure, he had to learn to make his writing dirty, funny, and one draft.

At about this time, too, he began selling novels on a regular basis. While he has, from time to time, held down other full-time employment (he helped design the Star Trek: The Next Generation computer game "A Final Unity" for Spectrum HoloByte and has also written manuals and game design documents for Maxis), his real love is fiction writing and he continues to pursue it.

His first wife was fellow author Kathleen Sky. Their medieval-style wedding was a Saturday morning program item at the 1972 World Science Fiction Convention in Los Angeles. In the 10+ years of their marriage, in addition to their individual works, they collaborated on a pair of stories ("Painting the Roses Red" and "The Devil Behind the Leaves") about the diMedicis, a family of interstellar swindlers.

Mr. Goldin's current wife is fellow author Mary Mason. Their wedding took place the night before EclectiCon 1 in Sacramento, at which Mr. Goldin was the Guest of Honor. They currently live in the San Francisco East Bay area. So far they have co-authored two books in the Rehumanization of Jade Darcy series: Jade Darcy and the Affair of Honor and Jade Darcy and the Zen Pirates. More books in this series are planned.

Mr. Goldin is an atheist whose interests include Broadway show albums and surrealist art. He has lived with cats virtually all his adult life.

Mr. Goldin served the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America as editor of the SFWA Bulletin and as SFWA's Western Regional Director.

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Reviews of Jade Darcy and the Affair of Honor by Stephen Goldin & Mary Mason

Tracy Riva reviewed on July 14, 2012

Jade Darcy and the Affair of Honor
By Stephen Goldin and Mary Mason

It has been awhile since I have read a book I enjoyed as much as Jade Darcy and the Affair of Honor. It is complex and intricately developed. The action is driven by the characters in the story and by Jade Darcy in particular.

The slate of foreign characters is amazing. The story is set on a planet on the edges of developed society. It is comprised of many different species, some of whom are humanoid and others who are insectoid and still others who inhabit more or less dimensions than our simple three dimensions. The characters are rich, interesting, and the different problems that can occur when such varied life forms, with all their intricacies, interact causes situations that range from the comic to the life threatening.

Jade Darcy herself is an enigma. Early in the story we are led to believe Jade Darcy might not be her real name, but other than a clue to part of it at the end of the book we aren’t let in on that particular secret. What we do know is that Jade has had a specialized operation to computer augment her reflexes. She is a carc, a computer-augmented reflex commando, and her existence outside of the military world makes her a rarity. She hides the fact she is a carc for reasons that aren’t clear. It is implied that she may be wanted. She takes what is certain to be a suicide mission rather than face another human being – the first to come to the planet of Cablans where Jade lives in the seven years she has been there. It is apparent she has run from human contact before.

The story and the action in it are wonderful. The science fiction in it feels realistic; it isn’t simply another Earth-like setting with futuristic sounding problems, but a setting on an outpost planet favorable to life that teems with diversity that becomes a driving force for part of the story. The matter of honor the story addresses exists on several different levels and becomes the driving force for the evolution of the main character. And the Greest, why he/she or it will just have you wondering how many dimensions it is possible for a being to exist in and what creatures from all those different dimensions might be like. I know I personally will be puzzling over the Greest and hiss/hers/its manipulativeness for some time.

If you are a fan of science fiction, or even just futuristic literature that doesn’t simply result in some apocalyptic version of our demise, then you should read this story. I think you will find it believable on all the levels that count and thoroughly enjoyable. I know I did.
(reviewed 4 months after purchase)

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