Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Halo: First Strike” as Want to Read:
Halo: First Strike
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Halo: First Strike

(Halo #3)

4.14  ·  Rating details ·  13,178 ratings  ·  350 reviews
The Human-Covenant war rages on as the alien juggernaut sweeps inexorably toward its final goal: destruction of all human life!

Halo has been destroyed, and the threat it posed to sentient life, neutralized. But victory has come at a terrible cost for the UNSC. Thousands of valiant soldiers fell in the battle to prevent the alien construct from falling into the enemy’s
Paperback, 352 pages
Published December 18th 2007 by Del Rey (first published 2003)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Halo, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Halo

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.14  · 
Rating details
 ·  13,178 ratings  ·  350 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Halo: First Strike
Ben Brown
Oct 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: halo
Two books and one video game into my deep dive into the “Halo” canon, and color me impressed: this really is a strikingly well realized universe. The way that Eric Nylund structures “First Strike” is pretty interesting – it serves as both a direct follow-up to the events of the first “Halo” game, as well as being what’s ostensibly Part 2 of a single broader narrative that Nylund started in his first novel, “The Fall of Reach, which was set BEFORE the events of the first game. The fact that “Firs ...more
Mackenzie Riccardi
Feb 24, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: sci-fi and halo fans
A lot of people play games for the killing, but others like the story. People who have played the game Halo for the story should read Halo, First Strike, and the other halo books by Eric Nyluno. This book (Halo, First Strike) and the others are about the famous super soldiers called Spartan IIs that are hopelessly defending the Human race from the evil Covenant and finding an ancient super weapon called Halo. This is a great book to read because the plot is interesting, the conflict is simplisti ...more
Chris Gordon
Halo: First Strike is the third novel in the original Halo novel trilogy, taking place immediately after Halo: The Flood (and Halo: Combat Evolved) and right before Halo 2. For many fans of the Halo video games, that time period in-between the first two Halo games was always one of the franchise's greatest mysteries – Sgt. Johnson even relays that that information was “classified” in Halo 2, and so it was never mentioned in any of the games since. After Halo: Combat Evolved, so many things happe ...more
Dirk Grobbelaar
This book kicks off with two story arcs, being continuations of the events depicted in both The Fall of Reach and Halo: The Flood. As such, the first three novels in the Halo series form a fairly cohesive whole. There are a few reasonably spectacular action sequences, especially the events concerning Master Chief in the early chapters of the book. However, that's about as good as it gets this time round. A few new characters are introduced, but I didn't particularly care much about any of them o ...more
May 24, 2012 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book, but I can't remember anything about it! It's not because the book was forgettable, but because half an hour after reading it I suffered a mild concussion and I seriously cannot rememeber A THING about the novel. I remember I really enjoyed that other Spartans were found and that they had distinct personalities (at least Kelly, Fred, and Linda anyway), and the action scenes were quick-paced and realistic (they actually run out of ammo quite a bit, unlike in The Flood w ...more
Justin Schafer
Feb 09, 2017 rated it liked it
I liked this book because it had fighting in it and battle plus its about one of my favorite video game series, Master Chief needs to get him and his team with the Covenant vessel with the crystal before the covenant reach earth and destroy humanity, Id recommend this book to someone who likes action and adventure but lots of action.
T.R. Preston
Feb 22, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Damn, a lot was achieved in this book. The pace was blistering. I honestly feel this one could've made a great game.

Master Chief literally saves the Human Race once again in here. The final act was as epic as it possibly could've been. The build-up was great too. I have no idea where Dr. Halsey and Kelly have gone, but I guess that is revealed in Ghosts of Onyx.

The UNSC capture two massive victories, perhaps their greatest in the whole war, against the Covenant in the span of a few weeks. The
The Fog Witch (Nikki)
This book was very refreshing after the underwhelming slog that was "The Flood". Mr. Nylund writes the Halo stories I want to read.
Plus more Sgt. Johnson. <3

Master Chief is back to true form and is no longer a knuckle-dragging, gun-happy 'derp' that he was in The Flood. No more endless descriptions of ammo that never ends, no more uninspired and recycled battle scenes, and no more stereotypical military jargon spewing just because it's a 'military' book.

We begin the story with John and Cortana e
Melisa Ramonda
Mar 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing
SPARTANS never die.

And, apparently, they never eat, sleep, go to the bathroom or shower in weeks, either. I like Eric Nylund's writing on this universe VERY MUCH because he knows his trade and you can see that he likes these characters and respects them. He knows these characters. This is the MC I want to read about, obviously. Anyway, although I liked this book incredibly much, sometimes I open my eyes and wonder about how unbelievable
Feb 28, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is the 3rd book in the Halo series. This one is by Eric Nylund. In this one Halo has been destroyed and the Master Chief is searching for survivors. After finding a drop ship with several survivors including Linda, a Spartan who was placed in cryo suspension after a serious injury he returns to Reach to search for survivors there and finds that more of his Spartan team along with Dr. Halsey have survived deep in an underground base. After a harrowing rescue they learn that the Covenant's fl ...more
Marcus V
Feb 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oct 29, 2018 rated it liked it
Halo: First Strike describes another brilliant adventure lead by the franchises’ main protagonist, the Master Chief. Like the Halo video games that came before it, First Strike gives the reader dramatic space battles and gripping fight scenes as the enemy faction known as the Covenant seeks to destroy humanity. In the beginning, The Master Chief and his squadmates are tasked to protect one of the last human strongholds, the planet Reach, from Covenant annihilation. But because of their seemingly ...more
Niklas Braun
Nov 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Eric Nylund is great! Brought this series back on track after a very subpar 2nd book. This one was excitement throughout. I was plowing through this to find out how it ended, it was really cool. I haven't done that to a book in a while (well maybe the 1st book in this series). Anyways, I really appreciate that this book is not just a placeholder for backstory on the Halo series between the first two games, but it really stands out as a great novel in its own right. Can't wait to read the next fe ...more
Aidan Owen-Jones
Apr 03, 2019 rated it liked it
I listened to this as an audiobook, and it was decent enough. I wasn’t really as invested as I felt I should be, and I think some of that comes from the escalation that happens. A lot of the threats just seem too big to handle too often, and the way these are resolved often seems just due to luck, which I suppose is at least fitting for John, but it pulls me out of the story when each solution feels too close to being contrived.

That aside, the story is generally pretty good, mostly in regards to
C.T. Phipps
Feb 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: space-opera, halo
Effectively, the inspiration for HALO: REACH along with the original novel in the trilogy. A lot of it has since been overwritten in Halo canon but it was still enjoyable. It also gives a lot of focus to the members of Master Chief's squad in HALO V: GUARDIANS. Eric Nylund loves throwing guns, explosions, and military jargon into his works so if you're in the mood for an original "classic" Halo story then this will certainly work for you.

Nov 20, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Eric Nylund nailed it again. My only disappoint was the Adjunct of this book and I'm unsure of the continuation of the Ghosts of Onyx, book 4. There seems to be some uncovered gaps in the story line and the adjunct just doesn't seem to fit correctly. Thank you for your creation though, I did enjoy it. ...more
Jared Shilts
Oct 20, 2014 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: 13+
Recommended to Jared by: nobody
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jamon Alexander
Sep 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nevada Dru
Feb 09, 2020 rated it liked it
Here we go again. That must have run through Master Chief’s mind at some point in this book. To recap, Halo: First Strike picks up directly after Halo: The Flood which took place directly after Halo: The Fall of Reach. Poor ol’ Master Chief has barely had time to catch his breath between big space adventures as he is thrust from one major encounter to the next. While The Fall of Reach is a slow burn sci-fi story about the necessities of creating a human race saving super-soldier programme and Th ...more
Sep 04, 2007 rated it really liked it
Shelves: video-games
First Strike is one of the many books set in the Halo Universe to fill in the gaps of story between the trilogy of games. This story takes place in the time frame between the first two games. The book is sent in the 26th century and describes a small part of a huge on-going war between the human race and a alien race, known as the Covenant. The Covenant have superior technology, allowing them to win almost any engagement. There is a small hope for humanity, and that lies in a group of super-sold ...more
Feb 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 29, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Excellent. I realize I might be giving the Halo books too much credit (they aren't exactly of a dazzling literary level) but wow. Just wow. Incessantly I could not help but feel involved, as if I was literally there, amongst the ranks of the spartans, lieutenant and corporal, ODST and marines alike. The detail with which Nylund describes the (space) battlefield, the assaults from each side, the emotional shock with the personas, it all adds up, and the whole just makes sense. This book also clos ...more
Dec 24, 2009 rated it liked it
This is a great book if you are a fan of the Halo Universe. It is not a masterful piece of literature, but then again all of those Star Wars and Star Trek books aren't either. This book does exactly what it sets out to do, and that is fill in the narrative background between the two games in the series for the Halo universe. Eric Nylund did a wonderful job keeping with the canon of the series and produced a pretty good story out of a limited set of material.

Worth the read if you are a fan.
Oct 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Halo the first strike was very different from the other halo books because the unsc actually attacks the covenant and wins. But also they add Spartans to the blue team and a surprise. To me halo has always been a good series to read they are perilous but exiting. Master chief always seems to live even in the face of death. Which always is fun to read when the main character has a slim chance of survival. In the end it was a 5 star book
Jan 07, 2013 rated it liked it
And the plot thickens. Read most of this on a long plane ride and it really helped the time pass. It's action-packed, gives tantalizing hints of things to come, and further develops and has you fall more in love with characters. More and more the series makes me think of "if W.E.B. Griffin wrote a sci-fi" and that, for me, is a very good thing. ...more
Master_chief chief
Nov 05, 2007 rated it it was amazing
its a great book and i have come to understand it.
Dec 08, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
Not a bad piece of light military science fiction. The continuation of the Halo storyline is well carried off, mind you, this isn't a mind-blowing piece of science fiction either ...more
Liam || Books 'n Beards
Back to the good stuff - bridges the gap between Halo and Halo 2 very well, although some of the slipspace stuff always goes over my head and seems unnecessary.

Ghosts of Onyx time :B
Sep 11, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
SPOILER ALERT!!!!!!!!!!!!

The novel Halo: First Strike by Eric Nylund, bridges the gap between the Xbox 360 game Halo: Combat Evolved, and Halo 2. After the Master Chief destroys the ring world known as Halo, also known as Installation 04, he is drifting in space in a Longsword space fighter away from the debris. He, and his AI companion Cortana, are hoping they can make it to a friendly base, outpost, planet, etc. If there are any left. The Covenant have stopped at nothing to eradicate as many
Lawrence Roth
Apr 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Eric Nylund is back to provide a thrilling end to the trilogy!

I typically try not to put spoilers into my reviews but after writing for a bit, I realize that even simple plot points will have some spoiler info in them. Spoiler alert from this point on for those who want to go in as blind as possible, though I will try to limit them! Check back at the end for the concluding recommendation!


In a nutshell, this book basically explains how Master Chief, Cortana, and Sergeant Johnson are alive in t
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
cool 3 15 Jan 18, 2013 08:24AM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • Halo: Cryptum (Forerunner Saga, #1) (Halo, #8)
  • Halo: Primordium
  • Halo: Silentium
  • Halo: Contact Harvest
  • The Halo Graphic Novel
  • Halo: Glasslands: Book One of the Kilo-Five Trilogy
  • Halo: Silentium: Book Three of the Forerunner Saga
  • Aspho Fields (Gears of War, #1)
  • Shadows of Reach
  • Halo: Uprising
  • Halo: Helljumper
  • Mass Effect: Revelation (Mass Effect, #1)
  • The Art of Halo
  • Jacinto's Remnant (Gears of War, #2)
  • Halo: Blood Line
  • Halo: Evolutions Volume I
  • Mass Effect: Ascension (Mass Effect, #2)
  • Halo: Evolutions, Volume II
See similar books…

Other books in the series

Halo (1 - 10 of 28 books)
  • Halo: The Fall of Reach
  • Halo: The Flood
  • Halo: Ghosts of Onyx
  • Halo: Contact Harvest
  • Halo: The Cole Protocol
  • Halo: Evolutions - Essential Tales of the Halo Universe
  • Halo: Cryptum (Forerunner Saga, #1) (Halo, #8)
  • Halo: Primordium
  • Halo: Silentium
  • Halo: Glasslands

Related Articles

  Kerine Wint is a software engineering graduate with more love for books than for computers. As an avid reader, writer, and fan of all things...
45 likes · 13 comments
“Chapter Twenty-Five” 0 likes
“He couldn’t know the future. He had to do what he could to save every person. Today. Now.” 0 likes
More quotes…