Can’t help it, there will be SPOILERS if you’re reading earlier in the series. But I’ll try and minimize that.
Had to wait for volume four from the library, and then I read it in one sitting. I continue to enjoy this, in spite of the sex scenes and heads getting chopped off. It opens with another birth- the son of TV-head robot prince who’s gone missing. I haven’t really liked the robot people before, but now their story is getting a bit more interesting, with evidence of class strife, oppression, and personal difficulties among the royal family. Who now suffer from a violent backlash from the lower class (they have blockier TV heads with dials instead of remotes, thus they’re derisively referred to as “knobbers” and “black and white scum”. I laughed out loud when the king finally makes an appearance- his head is a flat widescreen, completely filling the double spread.
Getting back to our key mixed-species family, the ones I’m really reading this storyline for. Alana and Marko, along with their pink ghost babysitter and grandmother from one side, are now living on a different planet. Still in their cool treehouse/spaceship, and trying to keep a low profile. Thus Marko stays home and Alana tries to earn a living- acting on stage for a kind of virtual reality platform. There’s work complications, from co-workers, her boss, and the interactive audience alike. She finds out that most of her fellow actors use drugs while performing, and decides to participate. Meanwhle, while supervising their little one Hazel on the playground, Marko starts reluctantly chatting with another parent, who offers his child dance lessons, and then starts subtly flirting with him. When Marko finds out about some of Alana’s isuses at work, and Alana hears the name of the dance teacher from Hazel, things get rocky. There’s other stuff going on- with the bounty hunter who’d been injured, Marko’s ex and Sohpie still tracking him down, and reporters for a tabloid noticing Alana onstage. I really enjoy how the fiction writer in this world continues to be imbedded in the story. It’s sci-fi with interplanetary war, strange aliens, political conflicts, gory bits and too much skin, but then there’s also this very down-to-earth stuff about Marko and Alana trying to make a stable home life for their child who is a living embodiment of the possibility of peace. And the words of a fictional writer thread through it all, with his books in the hands of characters. I like the contrast.