by Liz Maverick

June 2004
ISBN: 0-505-52589-5
Reviewer Graphic Button Lovespell
Mass Market Paperback

Jenny Red knows what itís like to be on her own. She has endured some horrible things and has lived to tell about it. She escaped from Newgate, Australia vowing never to return. Sure she is poor and lives on the streets in Macao, but itís paradise compared to what Australia has become. In the year 2176 it is the worst place on earth. It has been turned into a penal colony and toxic waste dump and those are the good things.

Díekkar Han Valorean the half brother of Prince Kyber, an old friend of Jennyís, is now a member of the mysterious Shadow Runners. He needs to get into Newgate for the group and set up a communications tower to help the groupís causeÖfreedom. Deck knows if anyone can help him sneak into Newgate, itís Jenny. Now if he can only convince her to help him on this mission.

The Shadow Runners is the latest installment in the fabulous 2176 series. Ms Maverickís offering is the most unique of the stories so far but it is a fabulous read nonetheless. This book captivated me from beginning to end.

Jenny and Deck are characters the reader will long remember after the last page has been read. They have a realistic hard edge about them that is perfect for this action adventure story line. The dialog between the two main characters is especially entertaining. The authorís creation of a 22nd century Australia is vivid and shows great imagination. This is a book you will find hard to put down.

Ms Maverick is a new author for this reader but The Shadow Runners definitely wonít be my last book by her. She brings a fresh and unique voice to this fabulous series and has created a work every bit as entertaining and unforgettable as fellow authors Susan Grant and Kathleen Nance. You may have heard the saying 'she can run with the big boys'; Ms Maverick proves that the saying is true with her offering, The Shadow Runners , the latest addition to a fabulous series.

The first three books of the 2176 series have all been keepers. Each author has worked hard to tie their books together yet also make each story stand on its own, creating what I think are three of the best books of the year. The only downfall with this series is that the next installment The Power Of Two wonít be released until November of 2004. Mark your calendars now to find out what happens next.

Reviewed in May 2004 by Barbara.

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