The Ship Who Sang by Anne McCaffrey
The Ship Who SangHelva was an extremely intelligent, physically deformed, baby. In the future these babies are not ignored by society. They are, in a sense, shut away, though. They are instead are recruited to work for the Central Worlds. Helva becomes a brain ship…a space ship that is the sensory shell for the human locked in its main column. Helva uses the spaceship for her body, and the ship has the advantage of a human brain.
These brain ships need human companionship. Therefore, humans are specially trained to be brawn for these ships. When they get together they are a brain and brawn team. When Helva starts her career for Central Worlds, she quickly recognizes Jennan as her perfect partner. Jennan is more than willing to be her brawn.
Helva is quickly put to work on high risk missions. She and her brawn have to deal with exploding stars, suicide planets, and brain ship kidnappers. She takes part of a Shakespeare presentation. She delivers badly needed medicines to outlying worlds. She even finds rogue brain ships. She is busy. And she knows her brawn is the key to her overall happiness.
The Ship Who Sang is one of Anne McCaffrey’s older novels, yet always a pleasure to read. The concept of the brain ship is fascinating. A brawn is not necessary for the ship to function, and at times can be a hindrance. Helva is a fascinating personality, locked in herself yet free to roam the stars. Ms. McCaffrey’s writing style is pleasant and fun, put to good use in The Ship Who Sang.