Downbelow Station Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of Downbelow Station

This is the first novel of Cherryh's Alliance/Union series.

Conrad Mazian's Company Fleet is losing an interstellar war with Union, due to lack of support from an oblivious Earth. Union is composed of breakaway colonies which use Azi (artificially born, second-class human beings who are given memories and training via "tape") to expand their population and economy, a practice abhorred by Earth and the merchanters (families who crew freighter starships).
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In desperation, Mazian plots to both seize control of Earth's government and destroy enough key star stations between the two sides as to make it too costly for Union to continue waging war. All that remains to complete the latter step is Downbelow Station, orbiting Pell's World. Mazian takes over the station, and its leader, Angelo Konstantine, is killed. Damon, his son, goes into hiding with the help of Josh Talley, a memory-wiped POW dropped off at the station by Signy Mallory, one of Mazian's most senior captains. Through the efforts of these three, particularly Mallory, Mazian's coup d'etat fails, Downbelow Station is saved, and a third power is born when the merchanters unite.
Best part of story, including ending: It's a well-thought-out space epic on a grand scale.

Best scene in story: Probably my favorite is when Mallory takes the irrevocable step of mutinying against Mazian. That's when the fireworks start.

Opinion about the main character: Mallory is fundamentally decent, but at the same time ruthless enough to do what has to be done.

The review of this Book prepared by J. Lee a Level 10 Peregrine Falcon scholar

Chapter Analysis of Downbelow Station

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Plot & Themes

Composition of Book Descript. of chases or violence 40%planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives 10%Feelings, relationships, character bio/development 30%Descript. of society, phenomena (tech), places 20% FANTASY or SCIENCE FICTION?    -   science fiction story Political power play    -   Yes Political plotlets    -   preventing/managing clash/war between govts/kingdoms Is this an adult or child's book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book

Main Character

Identity:    -   Female Age:    -   long lived adults


Spaceship setting:    -   a space station Takes place in spaceship?    -   Yes

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   moderately detailed references to deaths scientific jargon? (SF only)    -   some scientific explanation How much dialogue?    -   roughly even amounts of descript and dialog

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C.J. Cherryh Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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