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3.6 out of 5 stars
The Dare
Format: Mass Market Paperback|Change

on 27 June 2005
"The Dare" is the story of Dora the computer, a sentient entity who is dared by Tessa to grow her own body (see "The Challenge"). The flirty computer has only one goal and that is to seduce Zical, a Rystani warrior who has spent much time in space over the past four years transporting Rystanis from their hostile homeworld to the vastly more hospitable Mystique, a planet purchased by Tessa prior to completing her challenge. Attracted to her voice and personality whilst she was a computer, Zical avoids contact with the human Dora in an attempt to escape his growing attraction. He doesn't stand a chance when he does eventually meet her in person; after careful research Dora has created a body that perfectly reflects the image of his fantasy woman.

Following an accident after discovering a secret lab, Zical finds himself on a mission to save the known galaxy. His innocent actions have inadvertently set off a chain of events, putting countless planets at risk from the invasion of a deadly race known as the Zin. Hoping to track and reprogramme the Sentinels, machines created by the "Perceptive Ones" to protect the galaxy, he and his crew plan to travel further than any human has dared go, knowing that they may well die in their attempt. He is unhappy with Dora for enlisting on the mission, worried about her safety and haunted by memories of his wife and unborn child, killed during the Endekian invasion on Rystan. He is unsure how to deal with another vulnerable woman, especially one as unique as Dora, a wonderful character whose development throughout this book is incredibly realistic. Initially she only wants a body in order to attract Zical and experience sex but finds the confines of a human body scary. She has swapped immortality for perhaps a thousand years of life, millions of sensors are now downgraded to just two eyes which can't even see behind her and her vast reservoir of data is radically reduced to fit inside her tiny human brain. She feels deeply unsafe without a multitude of weaponry at hand to defend herself and frightened by the realisation that, unlike her main processors buried deep into the core of Mystique, she could easily injure herself or die. Lastly her wonderful new body is a disappointment, flawed by spasms and twitches she can't control.

This is a great sequel with a highly imaginative plot line, plenty of action and red hot passion between Dora and Zical; however I feel readers would benefit from reading "The Challenge" first, as it is assumed that the reader is already acquainted with much of the advanced technology mentioned and the Rystani culture. Like it's prequel, "The Dare" is an exciting read, with familiar faces making an appearance and the introduction of a new alien world ignorant of the Federation and it's member planets. We witness the emergence of a new sentient computer named Ranth, learn more of Kirek (the infant born in hyperspace) and his and Dora's abilities, extraordinary even amongst the psi-gifted Rystani. I very much look forward to the next book in this series "The Ultimatum". This story follows Xander, a Rystani warrior who makes a brief appearance in "The Challenge". Racing to save the Terrans (humans) from destruction he attempts to enlist the help of Dr Alara Bazelle Calladar, a hated Endekian, to help him find the homeworld of the "Perceptive Ones". Unfortunately this book is not due for publication until February 2006!
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on 10 November 2013
A nice good read but not as interesting as the challenge. It was too computerish, and a bit too narrative at some parts. The time main characters spent in kwadii dragged on for long and became boring. The end where they were to complete the mission went too fast and rushed. Dora sounded more like barbie instead of the sexy sentient computer in the challenge. But it was still good anyway.
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on 26 July 2013
I love this series, this author makes you laugh out loud at places and I would recommend this series to anyone - I bought these a couple for years ago in paperback form and just had to read again and again now they are in e-book
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on 17 December 2013
This is a story of love, romance and loss, I can guarantee you will fall in love with Dora. You will cry for her and with her as well as laugh along with her. A great story, well recommended .
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on 16 September 2014
Great story. Love the Rystani Warrior series.
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on 28 June 2005
DORA WANTS TO MAKE LOVE, Specifically, Dora wants to make love with the handsome Rystani warrior-pilot Zical. But since Dora is a computer-albeit a sentient computer-she cannot experience touch, taste and true desire. Dora's logic functions refuse to accept this, so she uses the advanced technology of the 24th century to build herself a body specifically crafted to appeal to Zical, and downloads her computer brain into it. But Dora's sassy attitude makes her too different from the women of Zical's culture. He's attracted to Dora, but he won't make love to her. And while it would be easy for Dora to adapt to his desires, she likes being smart and funny; she's becoming good at being human.
When Zical accidentally summons the ancient machines that protect the galaxy from invasion, Dora's mission is to intercept them and bring them back to the galaxy's rim. Fortunately for Dora, this puts her and Zical into very close quarters for a very long time. But much has changed, and as Dora learns more about human emotions and what they mean, she realizes that she doesn't just want to make love with Zical--she wants to love him. And be loved in return.
There is more to this book than just a Fantastic love story, there's mystical forces at work and on more than one of the intripid crew. Excitement, Romance, Intrique and so much more. Well written and a suberb follow on from "The Challenge".
14 people found this helpful
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on 11 December 2014
i am really so fed up with fake reviews being posted on amazon just to boost books ratings and the reviewers for this author are the same people using different names. It is so obivious a blind man could see it. Who writes 5000 words on a review? In some cases it would have taken longer to write the review than the actual book itself. They use the same terms and writing technique and even the same spelling mistakes, oh and they always point out that you just "have" to read the other books in the series.
I an so sick of this I now read the review from lowest up, that way i might get a true sense of how actual readers feel.
A word of warning to readers avoid long winded reviewrs who just "adored" the "brilliant""well written" story, they have been paid to say this.
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VINE VOICEon 13 April 2006
This book is better than its prequel "The Challenge". The writer deals sensitively with the metamorphous of Dora from a computer system that controls the defence of a whole planet with multipurpose abilities to a human being capable of only a scratch of that potential.

As Dora learns and grows, so does Zical's fascination with this woman who has been a friend and a colleague albeit previously as a computer.

The secondary characters are just as fascinating and intriguing. I can't wait to start "The Ultimatum" the third in the series.
One person found this helpful
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on 10 December 2009
I must admit when I picked this up in the library it was with the assumption I would be reading little more than mind-candy, fun fluff - what else might one expect from a tale of a computer who wants to be human and all for the love of a man? Sadly it was worse than I expected, just too badly written to be enjoyable. The book is pure Mary-Sue all the way through, from the bold warrior types who are conveniently genetically predisposed to muscular bodies and flat stomachs, to the way Dora the computer works out how to become Zical's dream woman physically, to the rather unconvincing sex scenes, a mix of mild bondage with submissive female attitudes and the usual stars and flowers of finally doing the deed; going from eager virgin to being spanked black and blue in the space of a couple of days smacks of the worst kind of fanfic couplings.

The becoming human concept isn't that novel either, Asimov had a robot wanting to be a human, Heinlein's sentient computers regularly grew bodies and moved into them, leaving another personality behind, and Anne McCaffrey's Ship Who Sang features an entity moving into a body for love. All of these are done with a more assured hand, where you actually care about the protagonists and have some elements of tension and true emotion.

Seek out the titles mentioned above rather than dulling your mind with this claptrap, and if you just want kinky fantastical sex, Laurell K Hamilton is the place to turn, either the Anita Blakes or the Merry Gentry series.
2 people found this helpful
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