Asaro throws in bits of math and physics through out her tales. But if you don’t get it, it isn’t a big deal. The Story still goes forward. If you do get the math and physics references, then you can feel like a Smarty Pants. Which always boosts my ego just above level for a little while. (And no, I didn’t get all the math and physics, but I had a darn good time trying.)
This collection of stories featured strong realistic female characters on a wide variety of worlds. I am a dork for having waited so long to discover Asaro.