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The Disappeared: A Retrieval Artist Novel by Kristine Kathryn Rusch

I bought this audiobook from Audible and listened to it using the Audible app on my iPhone.

I chose this book based upon the reviews at Audible and they were right, it is a very good listen. Jay Snyder turns in a very good performance bringing the characters to life and giving each one a uniqueness that makes them come alive.

This is the first book in a series that is currently up to 9 books, there is a lot of good reading here and it is a nice step away from the John Scalzi books I have been listening to.

What I like most about this book is how clear the main characters motives are, they are driven by things that make sense to me, their emotions feel real and easy to understand. They are very human.

In this universe Human’s have agreed to respect and uphold the laws of many different alien cultures. This has created a lot of problems for the police and the court systems because many of the alien laws, punishable in amazingly horrible ways, are not obvious to the humans who regularly break those laws accidentally by doing things that are not considered illegal by the humans.

Those that find themselves in trouble disappear; they change their identities and their lives to escape the alien punishments that await them. They spend the rest of their lives on the run from both the human and alien courts.

There are bounty hunters known as "Trackers" who hunt down the disappeared to bring them back to the courts while "Retrieval Artists" who search for the disappeared to help them in different ways.

From the publisher:

Retrieval Artists help the lost find their way back home, whether they like it or not. Specialized private detectives, they investigate the most unusual crimes in the galaxy. But Miles Flint isn’t a Retrieval Artist. He’s just a cop, trying to do his job.

In a stolen space yacht, three people have been found eviscerated, the grisly signature of an alien vengeance killing. Moments later, the border patrol halts another ship launched out of the moon’s orbit. Its passengers are two human children, kidnapped by the most ruthless aliens in the universe. Both ships are linked to a woman on the run: a Disappeared relocated to the inhospitable landscape of Mars. A reluctant outlaw with a bounty on her head and a detective on her case, she’s about to teach all of them a lesson: it’s dangerous to gamble with your life in a universe that rigs the game.

©2002 White Mist Mountain, Inc.; (P)2008 Audible, Inc.

I rate this book an 8 out of 10 and recommend to anyone who likes mystery, detective and sci-fi novels.

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