4.5/5; 5 stars; AThe concepts and characters introduced in this book open up a whole new range of intriguing possibilities for future Liaden Universe stories. I thought the idea of the Bedel people living on Surebleak as a separate society was brilliant. What better place to find dramliza than in a group of 'gypsy' type people, imbued with various gifts such as the sight and far seeing. I liked the variety of characters in the Bedel clan. I thought that Syl Vor yos'Galan stole the show in this book. He was such a great character. (When I recently re-read Crystal Dragon I saw that Syl Vor is a a yos'Galan family name from way back. Tor An yos'Galan thinks about his grandfather Syl Vor living in his bedroom at the clanhome which was ultimately destroyed by the sheriekas) Although the story takes place after the Korval clan has been kicked off Liad, a person could read this book without having read any of the previous books and still feel satisfied. Reading the short story "Hidden Resources" would give a bit of backstory on where the clan's children were situated before they got settled on Surebleak. In the course of Necessity's Child, there is mention of the strain of the situation on Syl Vor and the dark time before which seemed to make him so somber. (Hidden Resources can be found in the chapbook 'Halfing Moon', available from Smashwords and other ebook sellers). Another character I really liked was Rhys. His virtual re-birth in the Bedel clan was bitter sweet. I was always dreading the moment when the DOI would get their claws into him again and it made for a pretty exciting ending. This book didn't really move the overall Korval/DOI battle forward, some of that is going on in other books thats run concurrently, but I thought it enriched the picture of the world being created on Surebleak and set the stage for interesting future developments.I love this series. I really do.