Top positive review
A little disturbing, but rewarding overall.
on October 6, 2003
The Lyon family of "methody" Capella are Talented folk. This means that they possess telepathic and telekinetic abilities in varying degrees and combinations, although none has the power of a "Prime." Young Afra chafes under the emotional repression and strict propriety of his home-world, and delights in his beloved older sister Goswina's brief apprenticeship to the Rowan - the most powerful Prime Talent known to FT&T.
As a young man, Afra has his own chance to work with the Rowan. He and that lonely woman strike up a rare and wonderful friendship, destined to endure throughout their lifetimes. But romance isn't part of their synergy, and both yearn to find it with other partners. Which the Rowan does, eventually, with an equally powerful but untrained telepath from Deneb: Jeff Raven. Whom she marries, and partners with when FT&T's "Talents" are the only viable defense against an alien invasion.
The Rowan and Jeff Raven produce a family of Talented children, including a daughter named Damia. From childhood, this third in their brood proves herself the most Talented human yet born. She's also temperamental, strong-willed, and unpredictable; and the most important person in her life, from its earliest hours, proves to be her mother's friend and colleague Afra.
Although this book includes some thrilling passages of interstellar conflict carried out by telepathic and telekinetic means, the romance of Damia Gwyn-Raven and Afra Lyon forms its heart and occupies most of its pages. I'm not quite sure how I feel about this romance. The author handles Afra's transition from parental figure to suitor in Damia's life well enough, and there is certainly nothing wrong with a grown woman (even a rather young one) choosing to marry an older man. Nevertheless I came away with residual discomfort, because even McCaffrey couldn't quite convince me that this close friend of Damia's mother (in an emotional sense, her uncle) had any business sharing her bed.
I loved the "coonies" and the Barque Cats, though! And since I've read the rest of the Talent series already, I know that Damia and Afra's marriage is destined to mature into a genuine and healthy partnership. So I would advise other readers to be forewarned that "Damia" may disturb them a little, but I recommend it just the same.