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VINE VOICEon 5 November 2002
Yet more proof - if it were needed - of Anne McCaffrey's talents.
Yes this book is a bit lightweight, yes it's shamelessly sentimental and manipulative; but I defy you not to get a lump in your throat or a tear in your eye as you read about Tia in hospital.
Tia and Alex are very engaging leads and the development of their relationship is handled really well. (It's one of those occasions where hearing from both people's perspectives is perfect).
Not wanting to give too much away, it does leave you with some questions of real substance - is it the mind and personality someone falls in love with, or do they need a physical presence, or can that physical presence be one step removed....
Probably not one for the fan of serious sci-fi, but anyone who likes a happy ending will enjoy!
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on 6 January 2008
Make sure you have the tissues ready. I've read this several times and it's still a powerful story. If you enjoyed 'The Ship Who Sang' you'll love this one!
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on 16 September 2000
This book has adventure, mystic and romantic combined in a great book. This the first person as far as I know that lived as a softperson before she become paralysed and becomes in a shell. Tia has more character than many of the other shellpersons, that never has been outside their shell. She unlike most other shellpersons know her parents. It's on a alien archeology dig on an airless world with her parents she starts to get paralysed.
Here it's a lot of alien creatures Tia and more people around her meet, from alien viruses, like the one that got her to alien animals. Her investments are interesting, often people have made sure to be safe from what humans can do, but not what can come from nature. I wish it was easy to find investments like that.
With a brainship Tia gets to fly in space, but some things are hard to do in a shell, like hugging her Teddy bear. This book has a romance that look impossible to succeed, but has an unexpected happy ending.
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This book is probably just ahead of "Partnership" as my favourite book of this series. While the initial story of Tia herself is something of a manipulative tearjerker, and the plot not exactly ground-breaking, it was all handled with such precision and skill that you don't really mind being manipulated and the overall impression is quite amazing.

This remains my most read McCaffrey novel and I have re-read it too many times to count (even more than The White Dragon which was formerly my favourite and that is tatty and worn from use!). If you buy no other Ship book other than the Ship Who Sang, buy this one!
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on 23 March 2013
Hypatia is a little girl left very much to her own devices while her parents search ancient sites on alien worlds. She falls victim to an alien disease which robs her of her mobility. The story tells of how she becomes the "Brain" of a space ship, and her adventures while searching for the origin of the virus that paralyzed her.
The story is in the tradition of the original series by Ann McCaffery and is a worthy successor.
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on 17 March 2013
I have always enjoyed this series from the minute Helva was launched. The unique concept and fun characters have ensured that this remains a timeless series.
Tia and Alex's story makes you laugh and cry. From Tia's precocious 7 year old self through her journey to womanhood via a shell. It is a fascinating and engaging story. I only wish there were more of them.
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on 22 April 2012
An old book (bought to replace a worn out copy) an excellent story one of a series written by the late Anne McCaffrey, if you have not read any of this series I urge you to try them. My favourite is The Ship that Sang' Guaranteed to bring tears to the eyes of most readers
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on 19 August 2015
As usual Anne McCaffrey builds interesting characters that it is easy to become involved with and then spins a story that you wish to be a part of.
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on 26 June 2014
A well thought out development of the benefits and drawbacks of being a shell-person. A logical follow on to The Ship Who Sang.
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on 1 March 2013
mccaffrey briliant once more. tear jerking nerve racking and funny all roled into one lovely mix of charactures. a must read
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