Interesting premise. However, there's too much telling and not enough showing. The nanobots in Jake's blood seem to be able to provide everything JakeInteresting premise. However, there's too much telling and not enough showing. The nanobots in Jake's blood seem to be able to provide everything Jake could ask for: make him smart, make him successful, make sure his daughter and her caretaker are okay, save his best friend, etc. There was no real danger or suspense because the nanobots would fix everything. Too much of a deus ex machina.
The only suspense I had was thinking the author was going to pull a fast on on us and have the nanobots turn out to be evil.
As a father, I certainly wouldn't have left on a multi-year space mission if I had a very young daughter and my wife had just died. Too unrealistic for me.
I remember reading some of Dale Brown's earlier Patrick McClanahan stories, and thinking they were a tighter, leaner version of Tom Clancy-esque storiI remember reading some of Dale Brown's earlier Patrick McClanahan stories, and thinking they were a tighter, leaner version of Tom Clancy-esque stories. I only read a few of those earlier novels, but only because I got behind and didn't want to try to catch up.
Starfire continues the Patrick McClanahan world though, and gives it over to the next generation of heroes, including Bradley McClanahan. He's the son of the famed General from the other stories. The narrative does a good job of catching the reader up on major events that lead the world and characters to where they are currently. That was good for me, since it had been some years since I had ready anything in this series.
I remember this series being very real-world military fiction. Cutting edge technology featured heavily in the stories I remember. Starfire goes beyond the cutting edge technology firmly into the near-future science fiction. A near-death character is kept alive inside of a robotic suit of power armor. College students develop an orbit-to-ground power-transmitting device and test it from a military space station, only to realize it makes a really good space-based weapon. And in this story, a new cold war has started over space-based weapons and vehicles.
On the whole, this was a good, fun book. Fans of previous installments will enjoy where the story goes. Fans of Tom Clancy or similar political/military fiction will enjoy this, though it's not as heavy on the political as a Clancy tome.
To nitpick, the narrative is very heavy on detailing the technology and sometimes spends way too much time describing in excruciating detail what is happening. In fact, the opening scene with a character going into space on-board a spaceplane, and docking and boarding a spacestation is one of those too-much-detail scenes. I almost didn't make it through that opening passage. But once I did, the action and actual story-telling picked up. Later sections that went into detail weren't nearly as in-depth as that opening passage and were easily skimmed over. I don't really need to know all the specific manufacturing and deployment history of certain missiles, jets, or whatever, just give me a nice quick overview if what is absolutely relevant to the narrative.
Overall, a good action/military story with a strong space element to the story.
I thought a Vampire Earth book without David Valentine as the main character wouldn't be as good. I was wrong.
Valentine plays second fiddle to AlessaI thought a Vampire Earth book without David Valentine as the main character wouldn't be as good. I was wrong.
Valentine plays second fiddle to Alessa Duvalier this go-round. The book takes her out of her element of scouting and quick combat, and puts in the role of escorting a delegation to a rare conference of the Freeholds in Europe.
We get deep into her thoughts and psyche, and see what makes her tick and how she deals with the things she's done in the fight against the Kurians and what it drives her to do.
Very good book!
I skipped the book about Anh Kah - I'm thinking I should go back and read that too, now!
This is military science fiction done well! Not too political, not just all space combat - Jack Campbell hits all the right notes with the Black JackThis is military science fiction done well! Not too political, not just all space combat - Jack Campbell hits all the right notes with the Black Jack Geary series.
In my opinion, Campbell outdoes Weber at military science fiction. Whereas Weber's excellent Honor Harrington series gets deep into the political actions of ...well, absolutely everyone who ever took a breath, Campbell's Lost Fleet series keeps the long-winded political machinations to a minimum. Oh, you'll still get interstellar politics and conspiracies, but it's always shown from the main characters' points of view.
You also get great space battles, interesting aliens, some exploration (though not in this particular book), and an galaxy in-flux as the war has ended and star systems are trying to figure out where they stand and with whom they stand.
To round out what makes the Lost Fleet series, and Steadfast in-particular, great reading is the characters. Everyone has a story and gets a little bit of the narrative without taking focus from the story.
One of the things I like about this series is each novel is named after a ship in the fleet. We find out what's special about Steadfast towards the end of this book.
While Steadfast, the novel, takes place deep within the series, it does a good job of briefly mentioning what's come before. If this is the first book you pick up, you won't be completely lost as to what's going on and why. I've read a few of the novels in the series before Steadfast, and enjoyed them all.
Fans of the Honor Harrington series, Star Wars or Star Trek, or any other military science fiction series will enjoy the Lost Fleet series.
I didn't know what to expect going into this book - what was to be a parody of the redshirt phenomenoLoved the ending of Chapter 23! Beautiful stuff.
I didn't know what to expect going into this book - what was to be a parody of the redshirt phenomenon on Star Trek (and is now optioned as a TV show... how meta.) The story went places I did not expect, and that's a good thing.
The characters discover they're playing out a television show, but even though they're redshirts I really felt for the characters.
Starting off with a thorough reading an uncomfortable topic (suicide, specifically a service member suffering from PTSD committing suicide), this bookStarting off with a thorough reading an uncomfortable topic (suicide, specifically a service member suffering from PTSD committing suicide), this book gives him and others suffering like him a second chance in a special unit fighting an alien invasion.
The alien invasion comes fast, and off-screen, while our characters are still in training in their new unit. This leads quickly to the typical trope of the last remaining vestiges of military fighting the aliens. They quickly realize all their efforts are having no effect, and must find new ways to gather intel, fight effectively, and win. By the end, they've made some progress, but in no way have won the war yet.
I enjoyed this book, though the suicidal tendencies of the characters were at times uncomfortable to read. People this distraught, this broken, make unique character point-of-views. But it's their overcoming of this that makes them readable heroes.
There's no paranormal stuff here, it's just the military against the aliens. Fans of Bob Mayer's Atlantis and Area 51 series, James Rollins, Matthew Reilly, Myke Cole, or Jean Johnson will enjoy Grunt Life. ...more
Set in Australia in an undetermined point in the future, it's future noir. Park Ranger Virgin Jackson and a US Marshall reluctantly team uGood stuff!
Set in Australia in an undetermined point in the future, it's future noir. Park Ranger Virgin Jackson and a US Marshall reluctantly team up to solve an impossible murder, and Jackson learns there's much more to her world than she ever suspected.
This book has great characters and character interactions, an interesting setting and world building, and so much possibility. And pretty much no one is who they seem at first glance, or at least everyone has secrets.
Great ending too: satisfying, but leaves room for sequels. ...more
Very interesting premise: the ability to see forward in time using a man-made black hole, and two detectives on retainer with the DIA must find out whVery interesting premise: the ability to see forward in time using a man-made black hole, and two detectives on retainer with the DIA must find out why a man suspected of murdering his own family knows things before they happen.
The story is believably executed in a great action/adventure style reminiscent of Clive Cussler or James Rollins at their best.
Wow! What a pleasant surprise! From the blurb, I expected a military science fiction story with some kind of conspiracy thrown in... which I guess isWow! What a pleasant surprise! From the blurb, I expected a military science fiction story with some kind of conspiracy thrown in... which I guess is what this is; but it's so much more. It's more a thriller set on a space-station, with a bit of conspiracy in the background.
I had just finished reading the latest Alien novel, and while those stories are supposed to be scary and space-horror, it didn't really have that suspense that makes a good thriller. The Burning Dark more than made up for that. The suspense consumed me!
I don't know if this is the first in a planned series or universe; but the story wraps up neatly at the end, albeit a bit too quickly, making it a perfect stand-along novel. Though there's so much world-building within the pages that to leave this universe alone would be a shame.
**spoiler alert** This book has revived my faith in fun Star Wars books. It's a light-hearted, fun story starring Han Solo, set between A New Hope and**spoiler alert** This book has revived my faith in fun Star Wars books. It's a light-hearted, fun story starring Han Solo, set between A New Hope and Empire Strikes back. All the characters are their young selves: Leia is feisty, Han is questioning why he's still involved with the rebels, Luke is naive and carefree. Chewy is alive. And the poor Falcon takes beating after beating.
There's a really interesting macguffin as well; but telling anymore would be spoilery.
I've been disappointed by Star Wars books lately: the books set later in the timeline just seem to be trying too hard, and the Leia story that came out before this book just didn't keep me interested. But younger Han in all his scruffy, scoundrel-y, money-grubbing glory works really well.
Star Wars fans rejoice, Han still has it! If you're new to Star Wars novels, this is a fun Han Solo story.
Honor Among Thieves is due to be published on March 4, 2014, and was provided to me for review through Netgalley.