Published by Ellora’s Cave
First published July 5th 2006
Review written by Adeselna Davies
Planet Mail could be a great feminist sci-fi utopian book with some bold questions, however the amount of sex and low depth of the protagonist tossed this ebook to something forgettable and poorly explored.
The protagonists shape the plot with their insecurities and lack of communication that is fatal in a relationship. Douglass is a very ambivalent protagonist. She wants to return home, but also wants to stay; it is not clear why she accepts Marcus and that ceremony at the beginning. She also does not raise enough questions for a person who just crashes in a strange planet and accepts things too well. She often forgets to tell the leader Marcus some key things about herself (that she has a son, i.e.) and it feels that their relationship is only based on sex.
Marcus, on the other hand, is a better protagonist. Obsessed with having children of his own and leading a dying world, he clearly states that they need to protect their women in order to assure the survival of their people. He carries a burden and does his best, however Douglass is only there to be a person of sexual interest and have an heir… which throws away the entire feminist message that the narrator tries to convey.
The amount of sex scenes between Douglass and Marcus’ guardians turned the romance into something awkward, it was as if Marcus only had sex to have a child while the others did it for her pleasure. Can’t you do both? What was the need for Douglass to have so much sex with other men? Also lack of communication: not a good idea. It is never good when protagonist hide things, it shows lack of trust and trust is king. The amount of issues between couples in romance is due to them hiding things, however in Planet Mail that lack of trust was unnecessary. Douglass and Marcus had a huge culture gap between them and it was that gap that should be the issue, when most of the time is Douglass hiding things or not telling him how she feels.
The story had all the ingredients to be a great novel about the clash of two cultures, Douglass representing the emancipated woman and Marcus the characteristic alpha male. The rushed plot and low depth given to the themes turned this book into something forgettable. But oh well I still <3 you Kate :)
As far as job hazards go, Douglass Fraser didn't think crash-landing on an alien planet and spending her recuperation being erotically pleasured by three gorgeous men was in the United Planetary Parcel Service's courier handbook. There certainly wasn't a section on what to do when a very sexy king wants you to have his baby and save his world.
Marcus Blood Axe isn't only a descendant of ancient Viking space travelers, he's also a ruler dealing with a shortage of fertile women and no heir. Surely the gods are on his side when Douglass drops out of the sky and into his bed, giving him a last chance to stop his people's death spiral into extinction.
Despite the exquisite pleasures to be found in the king's arms, Douglass wants more from Marcus than to be his broodmare. When another woman claims to be pregnant with Marcus' child, it's past time to get back home. Now the war Marcus wages is one of sensual passion designed to convince his Earth woman that she's worth everything to him…even if it means giving up what he cherishes most.