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This is a "prequel" to Jack McDevitt's "Academy" series, featuring Priscilla "Hutch" Hutchins, which does limit it slightly. She is only just qualifying to pilot a starship, under the mentorship of Jake, a Starsky to her Hutch - maybe. There are rumblings of things that will be covered in later books, but almost everything is pretty low-key here. We see things from Jake's point of view too, and he has his own chapters when they go their separate ways.
The book reminds me of a contemporary novel that just happens to be set almost two centuries in the future. A few alien worlds have been discovered, and there is a protest movement on Earth about the way terraforming may kill off alien creatures when it increases the oxygen content of the atmosphere... which leads to bombs on ships, and perhaps worse. And an orphan planet, drifting through space icy and alone, seems to have some sort of intelligence. We get 55 chapters, many ending with brief news items of the time. Our narrator Tavia Gilbert's slightly apologetic tones work quite well... but, while it's an interesting listen, it's no thrill-a-minute adventure.