“** WARNING FOR SPOILERS!! **
“I actually fairly enjoyed this one. Quite a bit of action and while I didn't care for so much tension between the team members. . .it was sort of inevitable. Also, while things were tense, it never felt like they were going to 'split up'. More like they were just annoyed at each other, and stressed by the situation.
The plot is not a 'funny' or 'feel good' plot. Its a bit heavy-handed on the political/religious theme, and yet I could see it. Its surprising they don't hit more situations like this.
The big thing I did not care for, is the whole 'its our fault' theme that ran so long with the team. THey kept blaming themselves, despite evidence they just had bad timing, right through the end. Yet, as the reader, I did not see any way that it was 'their fault'. They might have made it a little worse than it might have been just by bringing something new into the mix. . .but they did not know, and couldn't know when people were not being straight with them. And in the end they did a LOT to help the people of Dalera. For all they were thanked.
I did find Rodney excessively arrogant in this one. . .but at the same time he's shown flare ups of it in the shows too, and he did eat a bit of humble pie through the whole thing so he wasn't terrible about it either.
So, yeah, a bit heavy handed, but all in all an interesting story and a good addition to the SGA pile. ”
“** WARNING FOR SPOILERS!! **
It was an intriguing book overall and definitely worth the read. I'm on the fence as far as Teyla characterisation in this book. The argument between her and Rodney just didn't sit well with me. I felt like Rodney was being attacked, and while I could understand Teyla's argument and why she was so upset with him, her responses and especially her and Sheppard and Ford's assumptions regarding McKay's motives really bothered me.
When the team returned back to Atlantis, Weir's attitude set me a bit more at ease. She recognised that she doesn't totally understand McKay's motives and that he has hidden qualities, such as when he stepped in front of a gun for her. While she seemed to ultimately conclude that McKay's upset centred around having to leave the shields on Dalera, at least she considered his altruistic side. Granted, McKay isn't the most selfless individual, but everything he does certainly isn't all about him. Repeatedly, he is accused of not being able to handle shades of gray, and it's baffling how the rest of the team views him in such black-and-white terms here.
Certainly, McKay's struggle with cultural differences and playing PC is fairly typical behaviour for him, but here, he was genuinely concerned about the disenfranchised class on Dalera. He could relate. They were being discriminated against for not having the ancient gene, and on some level, not being born with that gene really bothers McKay. He has said that having the gene doesn't make a person more evolved... but the gentleman dost protest too much. That underlying sense of shame becomes rage when he sees people being treated like second class citizens, because they weren't born with the gene - and now they CAN get the gene, as he did, and the Chosen are against it. He can feel for them, but Teyla takes his concern as his believing this his culture is better and seeking to impose it upon others.
I can certainly see Teyla's perspective here. He looks down on the scientific prowess of those on Dalera and doesn't respect their religion or culture (due to the Chosen's treatment of others), but she can easily see him having the same attitude toward the Athosians, as they have a different world view too. Still, she just got too mean here. Her calling him a hypocrite and accusing him of just wanting to impose his mindset on others is just a little over the top, and she just hold far too much anger toward him.
What really set me at ease was Shep taking up for McKay in a discussion with Teyla. I appreciated his analogy between her people and the ancients, and the philosophical discussion he spurred as to what is help and what is imposition. The way she got on McKay for his behaviour and then turned around and turned her nose up at how people on earth fight with one another, and pondered aloud what the ancients would think of their earth descendents... that whole deal just didn't sit well with me.
I'm not sure if I like how Teyla is written in this book, but then again, you have to wonder about these culture clashes. They took place between those from Earth and from Athosia, and clearly, that had to have taken place within Atlantis' flagship team. This argument is realistic. ”