May. 24th, 2016

alfreda89: (Books and lovers)
Sweep in Peace (Innkeeper Chronicles, #2)Sweep in Peace by Ilona Andrews

My rating: 5 of 5 stars



I realize that I am on a continuing journey seeking home. As it turns out, that may also be the bottom line for Ilona Andrews’ Indie series, the Innkeeper Chronicles. In a galaxy of myriad species and civilizations, Earth has an interesting position. It’s one of the few neutral places oxygen and nitrogen-breathing species can pause in transit. On Earth are many Inns and Innkeepers, and they have two major goals—the safety and comfort of their guests, and keeping the Inns and their inhabitants a dead secret from the people of Earth.

Dina Demille is an Innkeeper, daughter of Innkeepers, now running her own small inn. The Gertrude Hunt Inn was an old, dormant inn before Dina’s magic woke it to life again. But Red Deer, Texas is no longer upon a busy crossroads—the inn needs magical guests to survive, and to get them, Dina has to accept some chancy propositions (like dealing with dangers off the inn grounds) and dangerous guests (like a peace summit of multiple species trying to kill each other.) Dina is driven by the health of her inn, an empathic entity of powerful magic capable of extending branches to other worlds--and by the mysterious disappearance of her parents and their entire inn six years before.

All this gives her roots of her own. She had the choice to wander the universe, and did for a time, seeking her parents. But no place was home—so Dina found one, and tends it well. In Sweep in Peace, when three powerful, aggressive peoples accept an Arbitrator and a peace summit, Dina does her best to keep them calm, comfortable, and alive. This is contemporary fantasy of a kind I love. We get a dash of humor, of mystery, of romance—Like Martha Wells’ Book of the Raksura series, we get a blend of fantasy and SF that does not jar us, and we get the skillful weaving of both plot and world building the Andrews are known for. Each faction at this summit is sure they know what drives the others. They are all wrong, and even Dina is wrong at first. But ultimately it is her empathy, intelligence, and intuition plus the calculated plans of the arbitrator that give this disastrous war and distant planet a chance at peace.

Guests come, and they leave. Someday one of them will recognize her parents in the picture hanging on the wall, and Dina will begin her hunt again. But her search will happen around the home she has woven for herself and her few permanent guests, aliens who have no other home but the Gertrude Hunt Inn. We have alliances, tolerance, friendships and betrayals, cultures alike and cultures so different only an Innkeeper can help them understand each other. And we have magic—magic that makes us laugh and moves us to tears. There are aliens who are frightening, and aliens we want to befriend.

We have people seeking home, protecting home, and making a home. For so many of us, that’s a theme worth finding. I really enjoyed CLEAN SWEEP, the first Innkeeper book, but this one is an order of magnitude more. Recommended!




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