Pawn (Chronicle of the Sibyl’s War #1) ★★★☆☆

pawn (Custom)This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot & Librarything by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission
Title: Pawn
Series: Chronicle of the Sibyl’s War #1
Author: Timothy Zahn
Rating: 3 of 5 Stars
Genre: SF
Pages: 350
Format: Digital Edition



19 year old alcoholic Nicole is on her own, living on the streets, moving from one gang to another to survive. Her latest leader, Bungie shows up one morning shot and he forces Nicole to take him to the nearest VA hospital where he kidnaps a doctor in the parking lot. Suddenly, all 3 are approached by tall silvery beings and fall into unconsciousness.

Nicole wakes up and finds out they have been kidnapped by aliens. They all have jobs at keeping the ship repaired but not all is as it seems. Bungie wants off the ship and runs away. Nicole finds an Arena where other species are fighting each other for food while the humans have more than enough. The beings instigating the fighting are the apparent rulers of the ship, but as more is revealed, Nicole realizes that absolutely nothing is what it appears to be.

The ship is a sentient being and something caused it to split into multiple personalities long ago. The humans repair is aimed at restoring unity while the “ship masters” are controlled by another segment of the ship.

Nicole is a Sibyl, one that can talk with the ship through the use of drugs. The drugs have the side affect of reducing her life span to about a year though. Nicole defies the ship masters and brings what peace she can between the species in the Arena. This gets her an audience with the ship itself and the book ends with Nicole planning out how she can restore the ship to its full mind.


My Thoughts:

This was a decent read but no more. Nicole had been so beaten down by life and by her extremely bad choices that she just wants to put her head down and survive. This was a coming of responsibility story instead of a story about an already responsible person. I always have a hard time with those kind of stories.

The next book in this series comes out in 2019 and I highly doubt I’ll read it. Nothing about this book gave me that zing, that pizazz that I had with Zahn’s books back in the day. I think that it is more about me changing than Zahn as an author. I am done with Star Wars so his SW books don’t tempt me and his last couple of non-SW books have been ok but nothing special. This leads me to conclude that I am pretty much done with Zahn and that just saddens me.

From the age of 16-21 I almost literally ate his books. They were the guiding lights by which I judged all others. He was the gold standard. And now? My tastes have changed; gold isn’t so attractive, I want juicy fruit and seared steaks. Now I’m sad 😦



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21 thoughts on “Pawn (Chronicle of the Sibyl’s War #1) ★★★☆☆

  1. No more runs for fame and glory, your own little garden seems much more inviting? Gosh, you’re old. 😛

    Have you tried Thrawn, though? I’ve only read the first book, but I thought it was pretty decent. And I was never a great fan of Zahn, I only liked his Thrawn trilogy from back then.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am old. At least, I feel it more and more 🙂

      Are you talking about the new canon Thrawn? If so, no. I have been done with the star wars books since close to the announcement that destroyed the EU. And I’ve been done with the franchise as a whole since Force Awakens.
      Now, there is only the original trilogy in the widescreen, gold bordered box, dvd edition for me.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Well, I’m with you when it comes to new SW. The new movies are horrible. I’d rant about them at length, but whatever for – the reviews are on the page 😉
        But the Thrawn book is quite in line with the old stuff. I know they were forced to include Thrawn in the new thing because of the rabid fan-base, but not sure how he’ll fit.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. I didn’t even bother to watch the Last of the Jedi. And after reading John Wright’s 16 part series on everything that was bad with the movie [covering almost all aspects from storytelling to acknowledging your audience] I’m glad I didn’t. Not even the old EU ruined Luke that way…

          Liked by 1 person

  2. Yeah, Zahn is one of those authors. Many readers I know remember his books fondly because he was a childhood favorite, and then they admit a lot of it is the nostalgia talking. To be honest, I wasn’t planning on reading this even though I was sent an unsolicited copy for review, since some of the early responses to it were so negative. But you calling it a “decent read” actually gives me hope! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Honestly, I would wait to see if book 2 is also ‘decent’.
      I’ve yet to read a “bad” Zahn book but my goodness, sometimes he’s a little too mechanical for my current taste. Great ideas, but rathering plodding plots.


  3. It’s depressing when we stop loving an old favourite book or fall out of love with an author. Most of the books I loved as a kid just don’t age well in modern life! I’ve kind of went off authors like Stephen King as his recent stuff hasn’t thrilled me which is a shame.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I did get this because Zahn’s name was on it. Also, since it come out in early ’17 and I hadn’t seen any sequels, AND the title didn’t make it clear if it was a series or not, I figured “why not”? Now I know why not :-/

      Liked by 1 person

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