The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet by Becky Chambers

Another excellent book; it’s the first one written, and the one that A Closed and Common Orbit follows. There are a number if differences–primarily in the number of POV.

The big point of overlap between the two books is Lovelace; in this book Pepper is a minor character who crosses their paths twice. The Wayfarer is the center of this book. It’s a great mixed race cast, with subtly alien aliens. Everyone has motivations and ties that bind and quirky histories that come out over the course of the book. It’s only as I write now that Firefly’s crew comes up as a comparison. The tech is different, but the primacy of a small crew’s interactions is a common heart.

Spread over the extra characters, it feels less introspective and philosophical–but it’s still more about getting along with others in a strange but tolerant and friendly universe.

It’s a great book, and the overlap with A Closed and Common Orbit is minor enough that reading them in either order will work out well.