Book Review | Judgement Dave, Si Clarke

Goodreads Blurb:

This time, the universe puts the cat in catastrophe.

Plucked from her home on Earth and ending up aboard a strange spaceship in an even stranger universe, Lem and the misfit crew of the Teapot have more than enough trouble on their hands… and then they receive an urgent last-minute call to save a race of cat-people from certain destruction.

Stuck with a disaster-platypus of a project manager and an entire race of people seemingly determined to thwart their own rescue, the Teapot’s crew face the impossible job of herding cats and helping evacuate the planet before it’s blown to smithereens.

Can Lem and the gang avert disaster and save this race of infuriating cat-people?

My Thoughts:

When I say that I love a sequel, I love a sequel, and well, this one? It was an absolutely wonderful read. Judgement Dave had all the suspense, charm, humour, and warm fuzzies as The Left Hand of Dog (TLHoD) and more. The ragtag team from the first novel are back, and things have somehow become crazier in the time between when TLHoD finished and Judgement Dave starts. My gosh I loved it too, I went from reading a chapter or two each night, to reading about 60% of the novel in one night – but I really didn’t want it to end!

I am honestly not one-hundred percent sure where to start with this review, as I have so much about this novel that I loved, but I do have to start somewhere, right? This is something small, but there is something Si Clarke did with her sequel that I really loved and think it is something more series – especially sci-fi and fantasy series – should do. Clarke added a ‘Previously On…’ at the beginning of the novel with a recap of what happened in TLHoD. I haven’t seen this done before and it was a really nice touch.

I am still in awe of Clarke’s imaginative flair, and possibly even more so after reading Judgement Dave. The creativity that goes into the characters and the world they live in is almost magical, but the worlds themselves feel so real. The characters are all unique and through their differences they make for a vibrant read. The diversity within this novel doesn’t feel in any way forced to me. The way Clarke addresses more serious topics of race, sexuality, and internal biases (known and unknown) through this more light-hearted lens of the fictional world she has created is very cleverly done.

As a whole, Judgement Dave presented me with the characters I already loved so much alongside new characters where it only took me a few chapters to want to scream at them to listen. Every few pages I just needed to take a breath to calm my frustrations with certain characters, but in saying that, the warmth and heart of the misfit team was a perfect relief. I loved reading more of their dynamic and how they work together using their strengths to continue with the mission even when all feels hopeless.

The plot of Judgement Daves picks up pretty quickly, and once I was immersed in the story I wasn’t getting out any time soon. I love the urgency and panic of reading a time reliant conclusion. I felt like I was rushing around with the team as they tried to complete their mission before the deadline. So the closer to the deadline the team got the more nervous I became.

Judgement Dave is both a heart wrenching and heart warming tale that celebrates the uniqueness of a person and how they can use that for good. It is a tale of friendship, teamwork, and beating the odds in the face of a seemingly impossible task. I laughed, I cried, and I tried not to let the nervousness get to me. I highly recommend this to sci-fi lovers who are looking for something which explores very real and sometimes dark themes with a balance of light-hearted moments. Read this if you are looking for a novel with wonderfully divers characters, and if you are after a novel which is in itself, is a warm hug when you need it, even if some moments in the novel called for the hug in the first place.

Please Note: There are a few trigger warnings for this novel which are listed at the beginning of the book. I will list them under the read more below for your information.

Thank you to BookSirens, the author, and the publisher for sending me this free eARC (eAdvanced Reader Copy). I am leaving this review voluntarily. This title will be published 25th January 2022.

You can find where to pre-order your own copy of Judgement Dave by Si Clarke here!

Trigger Warnings: slavery, oppression, genocide, ableism

2 thoughts on “Book Review | Judgement Dave, Si Clarke

    • You would love them! 😊 Very wholesome sci-fi.

      Ooh! Thank you so much! I’m not sure how I managed that with multiple edits 🤦🏼 I have fixed it.


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