Nicholas (nwhyte) wrote,

A Woman in Space, by Sara Cavanaugh

Second paragraph of third chapter:
“You wanted to see me, sir?” She turned her gaze on the chubby member of the duo.
This is a gloriously bad book. I think I was moved to get it after reading a negative review somewhere. I should have known better.

Our heroine is assigned to a mission to locate four missing astronauts. She is twenty-six, and already a spaceflight veteran. Her second in command a disgruntled male colleague who thinks women belong in the kitchen. He rescues the situation when she freezes with panic, and also freaks her out by peeking when she washes. So far, so bad.

Then they are captured by the same aliens who captured the two previous missions, and it turns out that a doomed race has fled to our system after their planet was destroyed, leaving only two older married couples and six sexy young women, who have been busy mating with the kidnapped astronauts. Our heroine objects to this situation and eventually becomes the instrument of reconciliation of the aliens with Earth.

The entire plot lacks any credibility even in its own terms. The sexual politics is awful, and the sex is pretty badly written as well. It's so bad you have to finish it once you've started. (It's only 192 pages.) If you really want it, you can get it here.

I tried to do some research on author and publisher. No other book by any "Sara Cavanaugh" is recorded in any catalogue that I have found; it's almost certainly a pseudonym anyway. The 1981 publisher is Nordon Publications, and it's branded as "A Tiara Novel"; there are a number of other Nordon books branded Tiara, but most of them are "A Tiara Romance" or "A Tiara Romantic Suspense", and I found one case of "A Tiara Edition". The other books explicitly branded "A Tiara Novel", all from 1981, are:

On Rainbow Wings, by Etta Pegues - she must surely be the same person who pops up in accounts of the 1897 UFO incident in Aurora, Texas and also wrote a book about Newark, Texas;
A Flame in the Wind, by Janis Harrison, who wrote several other romance books under that name;
Maybe Tomorrow, by Sharlie West, who also wrote Reflections, a self-published poetry collection, in 1978;
Echoes of the Heart, by Ann Bernadette, an obvious pseudonym.

I guess these were railway station or drugstore books, which basically sold on the cover art and were digestible in a day or two. Even so, I think purchasers of A Woman in Space were probably disappointed with it.
Tags: bookblog 2020

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