Review by Woodrow Phoenix
In the previous volume The Three Suns of Vinea, Yoko and her friends Vic and Pol journeyed millions of light-years from Earth to another galaxy, home to the ancient planet Vinea. The alien Khany had decided to re-establish the home of her people the Vineans, after centuries hiding beneath the surface of Earth. The planet they had abandoned millennia ago was now considerably changed. It took some help from Yoko to enable her Vinean friends to begin turning Vinea into a liveable habitat once again.
The Titans begins with the three friends again waking up on Vinea after another month-long journey through hyper-space. In response to a request from Khany, they have brought some Earth specimens with them to help with the resettlement of the planet. The recolonising is going well as most of the Vineans who were in suspended animation for centuries have now awakened, including Khany’s mother who put herself into hibernation to allow more resources for her daughters. Technically she is hundreds of years older than her daughters, but Khany has aged while her mother slept and now they are more like sisters. Khany’s twin sister Poky came out of hibernation several years later than her so the two twins are now also years apart in maturity and Poky is still a child. Luckily Pol is very happy to play with her while the others deal with dangerous situations.
Roger Leloup sets up another interesting ethical problem in this story when the friends have to help Khany and the Vineans against intelligent creatures very much like locusts or grasshoppers, but five times the height of the average human. These ‘Titans’ are numerous and strong enough to take control of the planet, but does it have to come down to another battle for survival? Yoko’s empathic nature and diplomatic skills provide a great lesson for younger readers as she shows if you are willing to try there are ways to resolve differences that don’t always have to lead to force. There is enough jeopardy and cliffhanging moments to make you wonder if she’s made the right call as lines are drawn and sacrifices are demanded on both sides. The next book in this series is The Light of Ixo.