Blade Dancer Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of Blade Dancer

Jory Rusk was a 24 year old professional shockball player on Terra, until it is discovered that her mother was Jorenian and she is deported. (Her Terra is very xenophobic.) She goes to Joren, where her mother is from, and her welcome there is little warmer, until she meets the six other Clan Children of Honor, whose mothers were also raped on a transport and have been living in deplorable conditions on Joren. They all ship off for Blade Dancer school, where they will learn to be assassins and there they become a Clan.   
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The review of this Book prepared by Julia Walter

This book started off with some promising aspects. The main character, Jory, has been revealed as as half-alien, half-human on a xenophobic Earth and kicked out. Her mother was a member of a spaceship crew who was kidnapped by slavers. Seven of the female crew members were impregnanted by their captors. Eventually they were freed. Jory's mother chose to go to Earth, the others stayed on their home planet. Jory returns to her mother's home to find the other children (all grown now) and tell them the truth of their origins.

On the way there she is offered an intriguing proposition regarding a school of assassins, the very select "Blade Dancers." After meeting with the other children of slavery, who have been mistreated by their home clans, they all decide to go with her to the school of the assassins, and then they will try to wreak vengence on their fathers.

Once they reach the school the book descends into the depths of cliche. I would call it juvenile, except for the extremely explicit sex scenes, which seemed a little out of place. In the latter half of the book, Jory becomes self-absorbed to the point of idiocy, and seems to completely revert to adolescence in every way, including romantically. It became quite annoying.

The ending has a nice climactic battle, and one interesting plot twist regarding the purpose of the school, but at the same time the cliches start falling fast and furious. The line "{Blank}, I am your father" makes an appearance, and just about sent me over the edge.

The review of this Book prepared by Karen Burnham

Roc, August 2003, 22.95, 336 pp.
ISBN 0451459261

In the far future, Earth belongs to the Allied League, which consists of many different species, but the inhabitants on Terra are very xenophobic. Aliens are not allowed to live there and mating with another race is a crime. The children of that mating are denied citizenship and if discovered are deported, their money and property confiscated. Jory Rask is a world famous shockball player but when it is discovered she is part Jorenian, she is kicked off-planet.

She travels to her mother's home planet but on board she meets an assassin from Reytalon who says she could go there for training as she has the moves to become a lethal BLADE DANCER. She thinks it is a fine idea once she accomplishes her mission on Joren but when she leaves she takes six other half-breeds with her, all Children of Honor whose mothers were sold into slavery but were recovered. The half-breeds were treated as pariahs but on Reytalon they are all treated as equals. Their common heritage forges a bond so strong that they become their own clan house, a fighting force that is almost unbeatable.

After reading S.L. Viehl's “Stardoc” novels, reader's curious about the Jorenian home planet and culture will find it is very different than that of Earth's. BLADE DANCER satisfies the audience's curiosity through a story line that details the philosophy that Jorenian is based on. There are many twists and turns in this stand-alone novel and there are some unexpected surprises in store for a group of half-breeds who have become a family.

Harriet Klausner

The review of this Book prepared by Harriet Klausner

Chapter Analysis of Blade Dancer

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Plot & Themes

Composition of Book Descript. of chases or violence 30%planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives 20%Feelings, relationships, character bio/development 20%Descript. of society, phenomena (tech), places 30% Tone of book    -   suspenseful (sophisticated fear) FANTASY or SCIENCE FICTION?    -   science fiction story Is this an adult or child's book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book Cultural problems, alien culture    -   Yes Culture clash-    -   feelings of a human growing up among aliens Family relations    -   Yes

Main Character

Identity:    -   Female Profession/status:    -   performer Age:    -   20's-30's


A substantial portion of this book takes place on a non-Earth planetary body:    -   humans in a futuristic society    -   inhabited by friendly aliens    -   unfriendly aliens    -   very controlled society Planet outside solar system?    -   Yes Takes place in spaceship?    -   Yes

Writing Style

Sex in book?    -   Yes What kind of sex:    -   actual description of sex

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