Molting of a Queen: A sci-fi novella by Peter J. Foote
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Nina, along with her boss and a helicopter pilot, flies through a portal during a oceanic storm and winds up crash-landed on an alternate world. They have to navigate an alien landscape to find a way back to Earth. Nina also navigates her own internal "landscape" and angst over her dead twin, as well as come to grips with her boss, a man who is standoffish and difficult to interact with. And then they meet the natives....
This was a quick and enjoyable read. A definite "alternate worlds" feel without the usual scifi tropes. Don't expect spaceships, militant violence, or damsels in distress. Foote tells the story while maintaining a strong female protagonist and a satisfying conclusion that, without giving too much away, doesn't resort to violent conquest.
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