Down Came a Blackbird
by Barbara Karmazin
"Down Came a Blackbird" is a perfect example of why electronic publishing exists. Yes, this is a category romance, but those who aren't fans of romance can forgive it that--"Down Came a Blackbird" is in a category of its own. And readers who insist on the tried-and-true girl-boy-forever and not-until-marriage formulas should consider themselves warned--read your own risk. This book is different.
The difference starts with the heroine. Cait O'Keefe isn't human. Hers is the race of legend--the race that has lived on Earth beside but hidden from humans for thousands of years. They call themselves the Sidhe. Cait is brilliant and beautiful, with naturally multi-colored hair--every man's fantasy, and that of many women as well. As previously stated, this is not a book who strongly believe in the one man-one woman dichotomy--unless they are looking to be outraged and disgusted.
While on a vacation in space at "Heaven Help Us", a space station, Cait decides it's time to lose her virginity. She chooses an older man, a rugged and scarred EVA instructor who also teaches her the art of moving in low gravity. Cait proves a quick learner. She only promised him one night but neither of them is satisfied with that--well, they are, but they aren't. Even less satisfied is Cait's one-night lover's best friend, who also knows Cait and very much wants to know her better.
A natural talent in space as well, Cait lets herself get talked in to going on an expedition to set up an asteroid mining operation and community. The two men are going, as is Cait's brother. Corporate claim-jumpers attempt to take over once the party reaches its destination. After a series of adventures, the original party prevails. Saying that isn't giving much away--giving many of the details, would be.
"Down Came a Blackbird" has to be read to be believed. While much about the novel is predictable, such as a happy ending, it has touches that make it, like Cait, unique. Among these is a scene sure to be appreciated by anyone who has been owned by a cat, in which Cait's much-put-upon brother undertakes the task of fitting a kitten with a space suit.
In "Down Came a Blackbird", Barbara Karmazin has written a first-rate first novel and created a memorable character. Cait isn't someone soon forgotten. While the plot might depend a bit too much on fortunate coincidences for some, the story flows well and at heart this is a romance and besides... who cares? "Down Came a Blackbird" is delightful light entertainment for those with minds open enough to enjoy it.