John Barnes. The Lost Princess Man. (The New Space Opera 2).

A clever story that has a couple of sly twists towards the end. In a future in which humanity has spread across the galaxy, there remains class division, and when Aurigar is confronted by an aristo he fears the worse. Aurigar is the lost princess man of the title, someone who earns a living through tracing the many female heirs kidnapped from their wealty families and sold into slavery on distant planets.

The aristo approaches him with a very important contract – to find the missing daughter of the Emperor. But it’s not quite as simple as that, as Aurigar finds to his cost, as there are matrioshka-type realities in play.

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