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An Officer's Duty

(Theirs Not to Reason Why #2)

4.13  ·  Rating details ·  3,290 ratings  ·  126 reviews
Jean Johnson—the national bestselling author of the Sons of Destiny novels—returns to the world she introduced in A Soldier’s Duty with a terrible vision of the future...

Promoted in the field for courage and leadership under fire, Ia is now poised to become an officer in the Space Force Navy—once she undertakes her Academy training. But on a trip back home to Sanctuary,
Kindle Edition, 1st Edition, 448 pages
Published July 31st 2012 by Ace
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Average rating 4.13  · 
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 ·  3,290 ratings  ·  126 reviews

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Start your review of An Officer's Duty (Theirs Not to Reason Why, #2)
I can't tell you what attracts me to military fiction, or science-fiction as is the case here. I am not a military brat, never served and have no family or friends that do. As a matter of fact, the military in Brazil has not recovered their prestige after the military dictatorship of the 1960 and 1970's. Nevertheless, I relish reading both military fiction and non-fiction books! It must be the adrenaline of action.

Anyway, Jean Johnson stays true to form in the second installment of Theirs Not
I'm of two minds of reading this series. I enjoy reading it, there is no doubt about that, but it's in that way where deep inside you, the part that (for me, anyway) is always rooting for the protagonist and always wanting them to shine and be right even when everyone else around her (or him) is wrong--well. That part is definitely feeling fulfilled in reading this book. Not to mention that the main character, Ia, is absolutely right with no doubt at all, because she's precognitive... heh.

So I g
Aug 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I've been reading science fiction of various sub-genres for over 40 years. That's science fiction. Not fantasy. All kinds. The sometimes comedic, sometimes romantic and always entertaining Barrayarans of Bujold; the tomes of Neal Stephenson; the warped history provided by Flint's 1632 phenomenon.... But my heart will always beat a tad faster when I get to enjoy a really excellent space opera with a military flavor - particularly with a strong female protagonist (Weber's Honor Harrington, Moon's ...more
Layla  is a Picky Reader

I don't even have words. I just don't.
Lyndi W.
Aug 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 5-star, favorites
Did you read the first book?
If yes, you need to read this book.
If no, you need to read that book, then come back and read this one.
Mar 25, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: reviewed, sci-fi
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Gwen (The Gwendolyn Reading Method)
This delves into how freakin’ depressing it would be to have your whole life mapped out for you and the sacrifices of family and relationships you have to make. It does get a bit back into the exhilarating one upping the enemy in the end of the book. And overall I still enjoy the series, I think this made the story deeper and more meaningful but it was a hard book, I will be taking somewhat of a break before I pick up book 3.
Aurian Booklover
Mar 29, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This second book in the series continues with Ia’s story. In the first book, she is a soldier in the Space Force Marines, and now she will train to be an officer in the Space Force Army. Learning to pilot all kinds of space crafts, to give orders, to be everything a good officer needs to be. She has been prepared for this ever since her visions when she was 15.
But first, she gets a three week visit to her home planet, her family and friends. Where she prepares her brothers and mothers for the t
Jun 03, 2015 rated it it was ok
I liked this book, despite the star rating. So don't get me wrong, it can be enjoyable. But objectively, it's pretty terrible, and it takes the right kind of reader to want to press on with this series past the first book.

First of all, there's no plot. There's nothing cohesive holding the story together, other than it's the sequential incidents in Ia's life. I feel like what Johnson chooses to show versus what we don't get to see makes for a rather sporadic mess at times, considering there's no
Oct 05, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: sci-fi
An Officer’s Duty” by Jean Johnson is part of the series ‘Theirs Not to Reason Why' and is the exciting sequel to her mesmerizing book, “A Soldier’s Duty”. This is an action-packed science fiction novel which continues to describe the military career of Ia, an extraordinary female who was born on a ‘heavyworld’ (more than 1.56 times standard gravity) which confers remarkable physical abilities which pale in comparison to her mental powers. A stalwart defender who is determined to avoid the catas ...more
This review can also be found on Book Girl of Mur-y-Castell-blog.

I’m rounding up the rating because while it wasn’t as good as the first in the series I really enjoyed reading the book.

As Ia advances through the ranks of the Terran Space Force she continues to walk that very thin line between lie and deceit in the best interest of all humanity. It takes her to the Navy Academy and pilot school… and I lost count on how many things I’m misrepresenting in my review. Military isn’t my forte.

The worl
This sequel isn't quite as good as it's predecessor, A Soldier's Duty. Johnson is at her best in the action scenes and this book doesn't have a lot of them. It was difficult to discern what the point of this novel was except to bounce between the real plot-action moments and to add a love interest so the main character seemed more human.

What the main problem boils down to is: I don't believe any of the relationships are real. None of the characters seem real. The main character is wooden and th
Oct 21, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
With this book, as with the last one, I am amazed at all the balls in air that Ia juggles and at her altruistic motives. It seems like at each turn she sacrifices her wants for everyone, this book really pounds that point hard. I really wanted Ia to have something for herself, was glad that she was able to get those few days, but hated that it couldn't last. I did think it was a good think that the other person was able to find out the truth, not that it helped the bad news go down better, but i ...more
Aug 07, 2017 rated it it was ok
Ia gets tedious. While I really like the premise, I've begun to wonder if this wouldn't have been an amazing (single) book rather than a long series. Too many info dumps. Lots of wading through dull scenes. (No, I don't care about how the ships are laid out, what is on what floor, should they turn left or right.) While the addition of a love interest was nice in that it humanized Ia briefly, she continues to be a somewhat likable AI.

I became frustrated when her precognitive abilities were (comp
Like many of the others here, I'd have liked to have seen more action. The early portion spent on her home planet was necessary as a foundation for later chapters, but I could have lived without half of the Academy portion. When she did get to the action bits after she graduated from the Academy, they seemed disjointed and unconnected, like short stories rather than chapters. If that was intentional, it just seemed a bit awkward to me. I found myself skipping ahead at times, which is never a goo ...more
I'm not sure what it is about these books. An almost all-knowing heroine sounds a bit boring, wouldn't you think? But I'm not getting bored, instead I'm reading all these books in a row. Even though you know more than usually that everything is going to be ok, you still want to know how everything is going to be accomplished. And even though Ia has a very strong precognitive gift, this doesn't mean things can't go wrong, or that all Ia has to do is arrogantly blaze her way through everything. Th ...more
Mar 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
UPD: 2nd re-read and it's still pretty good! :)

I freaking ADORE this series and am dying to read Hellfire which is being released this month.

Excellent, mind-blowing, reality bending, Dune--like military sci-fi with a kick-ass, gorgeous, tough heroine who is trying to save the Universe. I loved it to bits and expect everyone else to rave about it. This is also one of the very few books with 10 out of 10 rating for me this year. And I can't wrap my head around it, because I can't stand the same a
Sep 04, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this book very much. It reminded me here and there of other books I've read, or I just had deja vu. She conveys the scope and immensity of the overall situation very well, and I felt that Ia is a very engaging "hero" character. The convolutions she (Ia) must go through over her lifetime because of her psy powers and what she sees just make for a really great story.

I was drawn into the book enough that I didn't put it down the first night until it was almost 3:00 a.m. That says somethin
Nov 25, 2014 rated it liked it
While it starts out slow and painful, this book ends with huge amazing action and intrigue.

Frankly the main character Ia is full of herself and prone to lecture anyone she comes across. Which is why the first half of this book was so painful. However once the action starts this book becomes flawless and impossible to put down. So much so that I WILL get book three and PRAY there's more action than lecture in that one!
Oct 24, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: sciene-fiction
I made the mistake of starting AN OFFICER'S DUTY before reading the book that came before: A SOLDIER'S DUTY. I was completely lost and from what I read, the PoV character Ia was an insufferable know-it-all so I stopped. It reminded me too much of the annoying Kris Longknife books, only with more infodumps. As a result I wasn't interested, but with prodding I tried again--from the beginning this time.

In SOLDIER we learn that Ia is a precognitive and when she was 15 years old saw the end of humani
Coucher de soleil
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 08, 2013 rated it really liked it
It's a good book and a great installment for the second book in a very promising series but I'm still not feeling the level of tension I think the story requires. Ia is just so blasted powerful, and her precognitive abilities are absurd. We are finally starting to get to actual wars and not just training stuff. Hopefully Jean can ratchet up the tension some how, in the next book.

As it stands now while the story itself is interesting there isn't any tension and that leaves it feeling a bit flat.
Mar 24, 2017 rated it it was ok
I'm at 20%, and the protagonist's humble bragging, which was my main point of contention in the first book, has filled the whole of the second so far, in my impression.

And we're at the second instance where she doesn't explain anything to people, and then gets annoyed with them for not taking that information they don't have into account. Thankfully she can then frustratedly dump the information on them in a way that is supposed to make her look 'cool' and show how dumb they acted before by (qui
♥ Ashleigh ♥  contrary to popular belief i'm not actually mad!
Once again a very fun an entertaining read. Though this time around I believe I noticed a few plot holes, but its hard to really pinpoint due to the large amount of details/side-stories. There were also a few occasions when certain sentences were repeated.
Which was slightly annoying, I know the book was spread over quite a few years but those few repeated sentences just seemed very noticeable. Otherwise if you ignore those few small things I'd say good job. I was sucked into the story line, I re
B.T. Jaybush
Sep 04, 2012 rated it liked it
Disappointing, compared to the first book (Soldier's Duty). Not only less action, but far more background stuff (particularly on Ia's visit home) that MIGHT pay off down the line (depending how far the series goes) but made for slow slogging when presented in a lump. The forced sex talk in the middle of the book was simply embarrassing and, to me, at odds with Ia's character as previously presented. (Seriously, Ms. Johnson, hormones are real and powerful--but Ia had to this point been DRIVEN by ...more
Feb 19, 2014 rated it liked it
Reread May 2014

Toward the end of this book, Ia says "I am not some sadistic, uncaring deus ex machina". No, Ia, but you're a self-righteous, caring one.

Look, the writing is still crap (soooo many infodumps, so many "As you know, Bob" asides), the story is still severely hampered by having a perfect protagonist, and I still have no idea how Johnson could possibly wrap this series up in three more books if the ramifications of Ia's actions don't become fully apparent until several hundred years do
Dec 22, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
This is the second book in a series that I began a year or two ago. I remember, without looking at the review I wrote for the first book, that I found the world interesting, but the protagonist seemed too perfect. That continues, more or less, to be the case with this installment. It really is a fascinating setting, with its widespread psychic powers and interesting alien species. You get more details on the threat that the protagonist is trying to prepare the galaxy to deal with, and it moves t ...more
Aug 24, 2013 rated it liked it
ok here's the thing i liked this series i like it alot but im not in love with it. i wouldnt reread it.. i would watch it if it was a movie series. there are moments.. and this series is getting better with it that this book really shines and others that seem in there for the sake of it. .. one thing this book did great was bennie she brighten it up.. and put some real heart into this series that it needed (view spoiler) ...more
Jun 11, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2017, science-fiction
The protagonist is both perfect and psychic. Also maybe not quite as bad as The Chosen One, but close. And kind of boring - I'm sure she would be annoying in person. Also, she doesn't speak. She quips. Everything is "quip". I'm sure she quips "Good morning!" Quip, quip, quip. So maybe the book could've used an editor.

That said, I not only finished this book, I requested the next one from the library. So it's weirdly good enough to keep me reading while annoyed. (the Phryne Fisher effect??) We'll
Peter Brickwood
Nov 30, 2013 rated it liked it
Pace can be a little slow. All the backstory and setup on the psi world seems a bit longwinded. Once into the action section quite a good read and fun. Premise is interesting and the emphasis on moral use of power / force makes the narrative distinctly different from many "action" novels. I'll follow the series and perhaps check some of the author's earlier work. ...more
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Berkley/Jove Authors Bio

Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name.
(1)romance author, science fiction author

Jean Johnson currently lives in the Pacific Northwest, has played in the SCA for 25 years, sings a lot, and argues with her cat about territorial rights to her office chair. She loves hearing from her readers, and has a distinct sense of humor. Rig

Other books in the series

Theirs Not to Reason Why (5 books)
  • A Soldier's Duty (Theirs Not to Reason Why, #1)
  • Hellfire (Theirs Not to Reason Why, #3)
  • Hardship (Theirs Not to Reason Why, #4)
  • Damnation (Theirs Not to Reason Why, #5)

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