Catch the Lightning - Catherine Asaro This is the second book in Catherine Asaro's Skolian Empire Saga and is also another not-to-be missed read for hard-core scifi fans and romance readers looking for a well-written futuristic love story.

Ms. Asaro has created another extraordinary heroine and hero while maintaining a non-stop action filled read. I now know why these books appeal to so many different types of readers - there's adventure, romance, political intrigue and interesting future societies and theories that boggle the mind.

The best thing about this book for me was the characters. If I can't care about them I just won't be able to get into a book no matter how interesting others may find it. The author takes as much care developing her characters as she does her plot which makes this book so special. Tina may only be seventeen but she was forced to grow up early and her actions, and responses to the unbelievable situations she's thrust into are very realistic. She's vulnerable and tough, smart and easy to like. Althor is a perfect match for her, he's strong, sensitive and moody and with her strong empathic abilities she's probably the only one who would be able to fully understand and love him.

My only complaint, and it's a minor one really, that can probably be attributed to the fact that I don't read much hard scifi, is that sometimes the book lapsed into long technical explanations that jogged me out of the story and because I read this book immediately after finishing PRIMARY INVERSION some of the explanations didn't seem necessary to me so I skimmed them. Despite that nit I can't recommend this one highly enough. The characterization is flawless, you'll love and route for these people as they face impossible odds.