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Review: You Are Cordially Invited to Crossroads Station – Mary E. Lowd

You are Cordially Invited to Crossroads Station  - Mary E. Lowd

Genre: Sci-Fi, Furry, Cozy Space Opera

LGBTQ+ Category: Lesbian, Trans MTF

Reviewer: Lucy

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About The Book

When an unexpected wedding invitation arrives, Anno packs her family up for a trip across the stars.

There’s a lot of fun, touristy things to do on Crossroads Station, including spacewalks, cloud surfing on New Jupiter, and enjoying the cosmopolitan atmosphere of a place that’s home to many dozens of different species of alien. But there’s also a reckoning to be had with her larger family, who Anno hasn’t seen in eight years. She was born and raised in the cult of Xeno-Nativity, and most of her dozen siblings — each of a different species — are still enmeshed in the myrmecoidal matrons’ talons. Can they forgive her for leaving them behind? And can she save them from staying trapped there forever?

This is a story about crossing star systems to be with the ones you love, the complexity of family, and the power of reconnecting with the best parts of your past, while fighting to leave the worst parts behind.

The Review

In You are Cordially Invited to Crossroad Station, the author, Mary E. Lowd, seamlessly builds a world in which multiple races occupy a space station that provides everything they need in one artificial environment. The species range from birds to insects and even to larger mammals like elephants.

Anno is the eldest of thirteen children, each of a different species. While planning the trip to Crossroads Station to attend the wedding of her two oldest friends, Anno fights her nerves about visiting the Xeno-Nativity enclave in which her mother and younger siblings still reside. The details about the cult’s beliefs, the conditions of raising children in that setting, and the effects that her childhood had on Anno are beautifully woven into a really well told story. The pacing and flow are excellent – I was drawn into the story and did not want to stop until I’d finished. 

I thoroughly enjoyed this book, from start to finish. There’s a lovely variety in the characters, each with a unique, well-detailed personality. The settings are well-described, with the perfect amount of details to give the reader context but without resorting to an info-dump. The clever premise is developed into a beautiful story, filled with character growth, lovely relationships ranging from romantic to found-family, and recognition that you can’t let the past define your future. 

This was my first story by author Mary E. Lowd, but it was delightful that it won’t be my last.

The Reviewer

I’m an avid reader who loves pretty much all genres except math textbooks. As a kid, my parents exposed me to everything from fairies, hobbits, and dragons to the biographies of interesting people around the world, interspersed with poetry, plays, and music. Into adulthood, I spent a lot of years with my nose buried in various textbooks. Now, I read whatever grabs my fancy.

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