Vokhtah by A.C. Flory
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Vokhtah may be hard to spell, but it’s both easy and a pleasure to read. I found this book to be a refreshing change of pace from a lot of scifi I’ve read.
The author’s impressive imagination has created a very alien world populated by very alien species. The Vokh, despite being the dominant species on this planet, are almost animalistic. The iVokh are a lesser, subservient species that does most of the work on Vokhtah. The Vokh seem to be divided by numeric levels (almost like video game characters), while the iVokh are separated into societies and roles within those societies that are very secretive and distrustful of one another.
As the book progresses, these secrets start to come out. One of the things I like about this book is how the author mostly reveals information to us organically as the story progresses, with minimal expository “information dumps” that distract from the story. Other readers may be bothered by this, as you can be left feeling confused and in the dark at times. But I prefer this style.
One particular strength is how the author makes you care about the characters, despite the fact that they don’t look, talk or even think much like humans. They still experience emotions we can identify with.
Given how different this world and its denizens are from our own, I would have liked some more physical descriptions. I still don’t have a very good idea of what either the Vokh or iVokh look like, for example.
Overall the story is compelling and well-told. At times it was even a real page-turner. It left me wanting to know what happens next, so I look forward to the next installment in this promising series.