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Publisher's Summary

"Soldiers need wars, doctors need patients, and the Nanshe needs trouble. That's just kinda how it is."

The galaxy ain't a friendly place, but it's a good sight better when you've got friends at your back. And when the crew of the Nanshe stumbles into larger-than-your-average trouble, they'll need all the help they can get.

What starts off as a simple retrieval of stolen goods turns deadly when Leena Espinoza discovers a girl stashed in a cellar, her guardian murdered. The crew has a soft spot for hard cases, and despite Delilah's odd behavior, offers help instead of turning her over to the authorities.

But what they don't know might kill them.

No good deed goes unpunished, and the crew winds up on the radar in the worst possible way. Merc squads, shadowy coalitions, plus the usual criminal element are all on their tails, so it's fight or flight.

As a plot to unbalance the entire civilized universe unfolds around them, the ladies of the SS Nanshe gear up for battle. Through blood and fire, they'll do everything they can to protect what little they have. In the vast blackness of space, taking matters into your own hands isn't an option.... It's a matter of survival.

©2018 Starla Huchton (P)2018 Starla Huchton

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Enjoyable all-woman SciFi adventure

If Josh Wheden were given an opportunity to remake “Firefly” with an all-girl cast, he’d likely produce “Make Bright the Arrows (Flights of the Nanshe, Book 1)”. As it is, author Starla Huchton delivers an amazing homage to that classic SciFi series, and she narrates it herself terrifically, using multiple accents to great effect!

My favorite of her voices is that of Cynthia, the pilot, but alas, despite there being identical twins on board the SS Nanshe, this book is not lesfic, is not erotica and there is not even a romance. There is though, a hugely enjoyable story of smugglers with varied pasts, space battles, mysteriously shady organizations, and, as with all great SciFi stories…a human story of friendships and loyalties.

The story is told from the POV of Leena, one of the crew of the SS Nanshe. As the first person to find 15yo Lilah, she is put in charge of her until they find a safe place for her. It’s cute how they bond over watching Leena’s pan-galactic rodeo crush, braiding hair, and talking of climbing trees! I really love it when an author tells a story of real people, not just dazzling high-tech adventures. Well, it turns out that the safest place for Leena is on the smuggler ship, and dazzling high-tech adventures do abound!

As the SS Nanshe travels to different ports of call, we are often treated to very immersive descriptions of the locales, including Leena’s observations of how different the towns and life is now vs. just a few years ago. She finds "inspiration in the determination of people to carve out a life, even in dangerous places."

Another quote I liked was from Captain Edy when she tells Leena: "What we mean to other people doesn’t define us…but it does give us purpose."

There is lots of action packed in “Make Bright the Arrows”, but I was glad we got to know the characters as well as enjoy the action. The audiobook deserves my 5* rating, and I encourage anyone who loves strong women characters in a SciFi setting to listen to the book! Interestingly, this is the first time I’ve seen an audiobook being released a few weeks ahead of the Kindle version, btw!

The story wrapped up not quite as a cliffhanger, but certainly teases with further adventures for Lilah and all the others! I definitely look forward to the next book in the series!


I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

My rating and my review was not in anyway affected by my having been provided a review copy.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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5 solid, Bright Stars!

Okay... I loved this audio book so much that I gulped it down in a day... What an amazing story by Starla Huchton, who is an amazing and talented writer, as well as a damn fine voice actor...
Huchton created a memorable crew for the mercenary ship, the S.S. Nanshe. The youngest and newest member of the crew is our protagonist, Leena, and she builds a relationship with a young, scared, extra special foundling named Delilah. The book really did have a Firefly(esque) feel to it, so much so that I found myself wanting to give them all brown coats (LOL)... But, I didn't care, really that just made me love it more! Wait. What? Was that a Man from U.N.C.L.E. reference? Hahaha... a Man from U.N.C.L.E. reference (seems kind of odd, from someone of her generation).

Do yourself a favor and grab this action-packed Space Opera. Folks that like books by Becky Chambers, or enjoyed Firefly (the series) are gonna love this book. Heck people that found and loved Lindsay Buroker's The Emperor's Edge, with Starla Huchton's narration on podiobooks from way-back-in-the-day are gonna be thrilled to see what Starla's up to now!
I'm giving this one, 5 Solid, Bright Stars!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Backlash
  • Princeton, NC United States
  • 07-28-18

Aim'n to Misbehave

A group of female space traders and recovery specialists come across a strange girl while attempting a delivery. What happens from there is fun and explosive. Borrowing more than a cup of sugar from Firefly the story does manage to come into it's own and doesn't disappoint the reader. I am looking forward to book two in the series. Also, the narrator is INCREDIBLE at managing the many different accents and characters voices giving each character its own nuances.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Excellently Narrated!

Make Bright the Arrows is a well written and narrated book. I enjoyed the story and the variety of characters in it.

I was able to easily get into the story. I liked the different characters involved and the emotional connections that were there between the characters.

This was the first audio book I have listened to where the author narrated the book, and Huchton did an excellent job of it. Hearing the conversations, discussions and arguments from the auther made it much more enjoyable and allows me to be there with the characters.

I look forward to the coniuation of this story.

This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Dee
  • LA
  • 07-22-18

Best. Author. Narrated. Book. Ever.

I am not a fan of author-narrated books but Huchton made me a believer. (I hadn't realized this was an author narrated book when I downloaded it. When it was stated in the first chapter I almost stopped listening. I'm so glad I didn't.)

This book was great from the very beginning. In fact, right around chapter three, I stopped the listen to confirm that it was a series. I did not want it to be a one and done!

Okay, I've gushed enough. The story...

There were three things that endeared me to this story:
1) It was science fiction.
2) The heroes were all females.
3) The main hero had a Southern accent
It what universe does that spell "great book?" This one!!!

The crew of the Nanshe are a group of female protagonists with an attitude. They rescue a waif with secrets and the fun begins.

The narrator could not have been better. Her Southern accent was impeccable. Her Irish twins were distinct and mischievous. Her, um, captain, was strong and mysterious. Nothing was amiss and everything put you right in the moment. Authors are known for writing a good book. It's great to see (finally) that they can read a good one as well.

I can't wait for book two!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

An entertaining story.

This is a fun Audio Book with a good plot and well developed characters.

The key to any good effort in Audio is the Narrator and that is true here.

The Narrator helps make the story come alive.




This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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Gripping Space Adventure

Picture the Serenity from Firefly with an all female crew and you have the Nanshe. And despite the obvious comparison's with Whedon's space cowboy universe, this is a wonderfully told tale that has more to do with heart than the science of space travel.

It took me a bit to get into the story, to be honest. I was worried that this was merely a vehicle for the author/narrator to show off how many different accents she had mastered, but I was soon won over by the earnestness of the characters. I tend to listen to audiobooks on my long commute each day and I have only ever listened to one book outside of that time. That is until now. I absolutely had to know how this story ended so I continued listening to the last couple of hours after I got home. And I wasn't disappointed.

Don't let the title scare you away with the whole Book 1 thing. This is a complete story with no cliffhanger, something that seems to be rare these days as authors wrangle to get to you buy the next book by leaving you hanging. Not to worry, Ms. Huchton, I'll come back for more tales of the Nanshe because the story was enjoyable and I came to know and care about the characters enough to want to know what happens to them next.

I definitely recommend this title and the narrator and I'm looking forward to hearing more about the flights of the Nanshe.

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Chickapollooza Sci-Fi Fun

Very interesting sci-fi story, all female, but actually really cool! Love the southern accent haha!

I was captivated by the story, and really enjoyed listening! Super interesting characters, great story! I am not very familiar with
"Firefly," so that part's lost on me, but I enjoyed this audiobook very much and am anxiously awaiting more in the series! If you love strong female characters, you'll love this one!

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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If you liked Firefly...

Although a lot of earlier reviews have pointed that this story is a lot like Firefly, that because it is. It is unique in its own way, and that story is amazing, definitely strong female characters that you want to look up to. I didn't want to stop reading this story! great for YA and adults alike!

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  • TU
  • 08-14-18

DAMN good book!

I was given this free review copy audio book at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

This was a very fun listen. It has a Firefly feel to it but with an all female crew. That the author also narrated her book, and did it well, was a cool bonus. The story is interesting and engaging. The characters are highly entertaining. All in all, one of the better sci fi books I've listened to in a quite a while.

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  • Norma Miles
  • 08-12-18

Quack, quack!

A routine, if unexpected, delivery of a package by the all female crew of the almost legitimate retrieval ship, the Nanshe,, finds the named recipient dead and a young girl hiding in a cellar. She says she's fifteen but looks no older than twelve. And she is terrified. And talking in biblical phrases. Not knowing what else to do since she is obviously alone and had probably been abused, the crew take her on board and Lena, the most recent of the seven members, is tasked with caring for her until she can be delivered to a Convent community a few days travel distant.
And then it all goes wrong.

Fast paced, intriguing and well written, this first book of a new space adventure series is both exciting and, at times, amusing with good characterisation and dialogue. The women on board are very individualistic, far from perfect loners but with an intense loyalty of family to each other. They try to do what is right but in this futuristic world, that isn't always clear and rarely easy.
A good series introduction, starting gently but rapidly building into cosmic action, it is also narrated by the author, S.A.Huckton, which can frequently be a big mistake, but in this case her performance definitely enhances the listening experience. Her reading is clear, well paced, with good intonation and adherence to the nuances of the text. Her character voicings are superb, very distinctive and different and with a variety of accents, increasing the feeling of really getting to know the crew. I very much look forward to book two with Ms.Huckton once again narrating.

My thanks to the rights holder who, at my request, freely gifted me a complimentary copy of Make Bright the Arrows, via Audiobook Boom. Recommended for all who enjoy S.F.stories of space adventuring. It's good, serious, fighting fun.