T'Pol and Endeavour
have arrived at Rigel; thus far, T'Pol hasn't had as much to do as she did in the first novel, and since I like how Christopher
writes Vulcans (as I've said in the past), it's good to see her back in the thick of it.
More political matters, and more discussion of the intricacies of Rigel/Federation relations.
An exploration of Rigel IV now, with its feudal, technologically-stratified society, which exists so that the First Families can be as decadent as possible. I quite enjoyed the scenes of Williams sneaking around, aided by the ability of the guards to be bribed and for everyone, Families and serfs alike, to gossip more-or-less freely. A strange and endearing mix of high-stakes danger and doors left open at opportune times due to the rather ludicrous nature of IV's society (ludicrous as a reflection on them, not the writing, just to be clear). It was also rather amusing when Williams attempts
to keep herself attendant to the wider good and stick to her high-stakes mission, but of course gives in to save an adolescent girl from being raped by one of the reigning dandies. And then again faces a mix of surprisingly easy windfalls and real danger, which ends with her capture. All enjoyable, if possibly a little rushed.
I wonder who Grennex are? They seem to be producing a lot of Rigelian ships, of varying classifications.
As for Rigel IV, it's a good look here at the nastier side of this highly diverse, richly populated system, and the sheer decadence and self-absorption of the First Families comes across well. (And apparently, despite everything, some of them remain just as awful even into the 2360s, in attitude if not in overt excesses. It's almost impressive just how deep an amoral groove they've dug for themselves).
Rigel IV should not be confused with Rygel XVI, though both are decadent, despotic and self-centred: