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Fledgling: Liaden Universe: Theo Waitley, Book 1 | [Sharon Lee, Steve Miller]

Fledgling: Liaden Universe: Theo Waitley, Book 1

Theo Waitley has lived all her young life on Delgado, a Safe World that is home to one of the galaxy's premier institutions of higher learning. Both Theo's mother, Kamele, and Kamele's onagrata Jen Sar Kiladi, are professors at the university, and they all live comfortably together, just like they have for all of Theo's life, in Jen Sar's house at the outskirts of town.Suddenly, though, Theo's life changes. Kamele leaves Jen Sar and moves herself and Theo back into faculty housing, which is not what Theo is used to.
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Publisher's Summary

Theo Waitley has lived all her young life on Delgado, a Safe World that is home to one of the galaxy's premier institutions of higher learning. Both Theo's mother, Kamele, and Kamele's onagrata Jen Sar Kiladi, are professors at the university, and they all live comfortably together, just like they have for all of Theo's life, in Jen Sar's house at the outskirts of town. Suddenly, though, Theo's life changes. Kamele leaves Jen Sar and moves herself and Theo back into faculty housing, which is not what Theo is used to.

Once settled back inside the Wall, Kamele becomes embroiled in faculty politics, and is appointed sub-chair of her department. Meanwhile, Theo who has a notation in her file indicating that she is "physically challenged," has a series of misadventures, including pulling her best friend down on the belt-ride to class, and hurting a teammate during a savage game. With notes piling up in her file, Theo only wants to go "home", to the house in the suburbs, and have everything just like it used to be.

Then, Kamele uncovers evidence of possible dishonest scholarship inside of her department. In order to clear the department, she and a team of senior professors must go off-world to perform a forensic document search. Theo hopes this will mean that she'll be left in the care of the man she calls "Father", Professor Kiladi, and is horrified to learn that Kamele means to bring Theo with her!

©2009 Sharon Lee and Steve Miller (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (207 )
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4.3 (187 )
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  •  
    Sires Chesapeake, OH, United States 05-29-13
    Sires Chesapeake, OH, United States 05-29-13 Member Since 2012

    I like mysteries (particularly British ones, historical fiction and nonfiction, science fiction and fantasy.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A Coming of Age Story in the Liaden Universe"

    Theo Waitley, the child of two scholars on the matriarchal world of Safe Delgado, finds her life falling apart as her mother decides to leave the genetic scholar Jen Sar's house and move into an apartment in the Wall. Theo does not want to leave Jen Sar's comfortable house and garden. She also does not want to leave her father with who she has an attachment unusual on Delgardo.

    However Theo has problems of her own including a notation in her file that she was physically challenged. As a result of this she is frequently in danger of losing status and companionship. It is when her mother's duties as a scholar result in the two of them having to leave Delgardo to allow her mother to investigate a serious breach of scholarship, that Theo starts to understand that there are dangers beyond a bit of clumsiness on a moving sidewalk.

    Meanwhile Jen Sar is also pursuing his own path.

    And Theo's all important fifteenth birthday is approaching.

    I ended up thinking that this first volume in Theo's story is one that reminded me of the best of Robert Heinlein or Andre Norton's juveniles.

    The narration is truly excellent. I think I enjoyed listening to Eileen Stevens read the book more than I enjoyed reading it myself. One of my tests for excellence of narration is to try to read a chapter without hearing the voice of the narrator in my head. If I cannot put aside the voice of the narrator then I know I have had a great listening experience.


    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carolyn 10-10-12
    Carolyn 10-10-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "It's kinda complicated"

    This book is the start of the answer to a Character's comment at the end of I Dare.
    The Narrator caught the sweep of Theo and her complex interactions and the start of her flowering. I'm so delighted to finally have acess to one of my favorite books in the Liaden Universe in audio. I watched this story take shape in the weekly chapter postings.
    This book can stand alone but the rest of the series is enhanced by knowledge of the Agent of Change books.
    Necessity requires that I obtain all the books in this series.
    Only one wish left and that is that the Chap books be produced in audio.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    C Boyle 02-13-14
    C Boyle 02-13-14
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    "great narrator, but POV is sometimes unclear"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    yes, it's a decent intro to a very good body of work. A bit slow to start, lots of things not adequately explained, but if you can bear with that, the series is terrific. I gave it to my wife after she has put up with me buying/talking about everything from L&M, but she really had trouble in the audio version w/ POV changes and cultural quirks that were not clearly explained. Next book is better, I think, but get this as the series is, overall, outstanding.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Theo rocks, although it takes her a while (as in "several books") to find her way.


    Have you listened to any of Eileen Stevens’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    no, but great voice, very clear, easy to listen to, and generally very well read.


    Any additional comments?

    There are many changes in POV, and a few alien society features, that are not adequately identified for an intro book. A chapter heading will say a place and person, and then immediately (and w/o warning) be some other person/place. In print it is a bit clearer. This is the result of a manuscript that is not ideally structured for audio, I think, not of the (very good) reader or of the writing or story. For comparison check out the Solar Clipper series, which are good in print but perfect in audio form. And L&M don't over explain things (good generally), but in the audio form I think there is an extra barrier in trying to stay with the story with a lot of unfamiliar/unexplained concepts.Audio book text needs to be a bit simpler, I think, to be picked up as easily...especially if you're unfamiliar and/or driving! :)

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    DENNIS Adelphi, MD, United States 08-20-14
    DENNIS Adelphi, MD, United States 08-20-14 Member Since 2011
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    "A sweet fem-fi story"

    This is a sly futuristic tale without being dystopian. The style morphs from bare-bones homey, to comedy-of-manners, to thriller, somehow making the story of a teen daughter of professors and sabotage in the reference library interesting. Nice dry satire of academic and feminist lifestyle, as our girl finds her true self.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mark Waltham, MA, United States 06-30-14
    Mark Waltham, MA, United States 06-30-14 Member Since 2010

    MTF

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    "so boring"

    I'm an adult who occasionally enjoys a good young adult novel. The futuristic school theme intrigued me, but I was totally bored from the start. I can see why this might appeal to a young teenage girl, but it did not work for me.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christine Sandy Hook, CT, United States 03-12-15
    Christine Sandy Hook, CT, United States 03-12-15 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I'm sorry were you saying something"
    Would you try another book from Sharon Lee and Steve Miller and/or Eileen Stevens?

    No. It may be snobbish of me but on average, an audio book has about 10 minutes to get me interested. This book took almost an hour to communicate ideas that could have been articulated in just a few minutes. I quickly found myself not paying attention and after a little over an hour, I just couldn't keep listening. It is possible that this is a good book, but the author took up too much of my time in introductory drivel.


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    Don't know yet.


    What does Eileen Stevens bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Once my interest is lost in a book, no amount of good narration will redeem it


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Fledgling?

    40 minutes of the first hour


    Any additional comments?

    As I indicated, it is possible that this is a good book, however, it seems that the story got lost in the writing.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tracy GLENDORA, CA, United States 03-09-15
    Tracy GLENDORA, CA, United States 03-09-15 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Not a Fan"

    To be fair, this was recommended to me by someone who said that I did not have to read previous books in this series before I listened to this one.

    I would have to disagree. I think by not reading previous books, in many ways this book made no sense. I had no understanding of the world the main character (Theo) was from and why it was so "rule" oriented and people were so cold towards their children. The other head scratcher for me was how being adept at dancing and certain dance moves made you a pilot. This idea just seemed odd and out of place. I kept thinking that a pilot must mean something else in this universe than what we know them to be.

    The other problem with this book for me is that the character of Theo did not captivate my interest. When I was done with this book, I did not feel compelled to read any other books about her character. For me, the only interesting storyline in this was the developing relationship between Theo and her parents. Knowing that other books about her do not explore this relationship, I did not see any reason for me to continue with her story.

    Lastly, the narrator was not the best in my opinion. Her voicing of some characters was pretty good, but others were very annoying. Also, she never really paused when the story went from one storyline to the next. I found myself confused because one minute you were on one planet with certain characters and without warning we would be on another planet with other characters. I would often have to rewind just to figure out what had just happened.

    If you are really interested in reading books in this series I would not start with this book. Maybe had I not done so, I would not have felt so lost and disinterested.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Andrew 02-11-15
    Andrew 02-11-15 Member Since 2013
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    "Liaden coming of age story"

    Good story great characters. A tiny bit hard to follow with sudden sub story changes. I highly recommend it to anyone and especially if you have read any Liaden universe stories.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kathy Davis, CA, United States 06-28-14
    Kathy Davis, CA, United States 06-28-14 Member Since 2008

    Newly retired, I am a reading fiend! I like many types of books, both fiction and non-fiction, with the exception of romance and fantasy

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A fine start to the series"

    This first novel of the Liaden Universe/Theo Waitley series does what you would expect it to. It has a fair amount of "world building" where you are learning the lay of the land in Theo Waitley's story. You get a feel for the main characters as this coming-of-age story begins. How refreshing to find a coming-of-age story involving a female character, too!

    In addition, Eileen Stevens gives a very good narration which adds to your listening experience.

    I think this novel has whetted my appetite and left me wondering what is next for Theo. So yes, I will be following up in the near future on her next adventure in book 2 of the series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lisa Cossayuna, NY, United States 06-22-14
    Lisa Cossayuna, NY, United States 06-22-14 Member Since 2014
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    "Good story, uncomfortable performance"
    Any additional comments?

    This was a good story, but hard to follow as the reader did not make clear breaks when the story changed locations.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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