James's Reviews > The Far Side of the Stars

The Far Side of the Stars by David Drake
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's review
Apr 09, 2012

really liked it
Read from April 09 to 12, 2012

This is quickly developing into a great sci-fi series. To think what my original thoughts where after just 100 ish pages and what they are now... I can't think of two more drastic things. This is easily a Four Stars, and had me scouring the net/library/town to get hold of a copy as soon as I could of the next one. I have it en route, but I can't wait to join Daniel and Mundy on another sour-soaring cruise.

Plot: Four Stars and a Half
When I first saw what Drake was doing I was surprised and a little concerned. Only three books in and we were already having Drake backing out of the navy on a private ship. I wasn't concerned because I didn't think it would work, but by what it could mean for the rest of the series - did it mean that Drake was running out of ideas and was having to drastically change it up so soon? Did it mean that the whole direction of the books was changing, and if so, would he be able to bring it back to the Navy if what he did wasn't as successful? I don't know, but I think I was just concerned because it felt too early to be leaving the navy. At book 10+? Yeah, that could work. Book three? Alarm bells did ring.

But they weren't necessary. I loved every moment of this book with this great plot. I was a tad disappointed that Drake didn't expand/explore the possible complications of the female employer's [I am REALLY bad with names] interest in Daniel, as conflict between them would have made it that much more fun. It was almost as if the employers were only there to give Drake and excuse to take his valiant pair out to Galactic North [another thing I have a problem with - there is no north in space!]. However, this [these] were very small complaints. I loved all the action, the slight world building [such as Dragons! - don't be put off, its not what you think], the dialogue and the intriguie all balled into one. I know this series isn't primarily action, but the way that it was all brought together was brilliant. For those of you who don't crave action in their books, this also had a lot more which you would have to be immune to sci-fi to not love. Seriously, a great plot. I really liked the all knowing tree [once again, don't be put off, not what you think].

[Aside: This sci-fi is almost the epitome of what first attracted me to the genre: it is fantasy in space, there is no blatant magic but there is still an overhwelming knowledge that there is so much that the humans within it (and us) don't understand - I can't explain, but meh - the tree is a perfect example. However, if you are coming to Sci-Fi because you want a logical ordered story based on theory and what not and still be entertained, then please don't be put off. I was(for another reason) and I seriously resent the time I spent not reading these - at least get as far as and read the second book before putting it down. Great series.]

Characters: Four Stars and a half
They have come such a long way from the first hundred or so pages of the first book. Such a long way; from bastards I hated - and I mean that - to characters that I root for at every turn and have become attached to as only a reader and his entertainers can.I won't bother with much more here, because whatever I have said I will say again and again in previous and later reviews for the series - and if you have gotten this far I assume you know how great they are, and if you don't THEY ARE GREAT, and you can look back at my previous reviews for it.

Writing: Three Stars
Sci-Fi rarely generates greats with amazing writing skills, but what it does produces it good, solid writing that doesn't intrude and keeps the novel flowing brilliantly. This here is a perfect example, with there being nothing much to talk about it.

So should you read this? Hello, four stars and I have raved about it all the way through, do you really think I am going to say no? Hell no! Read it, it's great. Get past the first half of the first book, and you are into a world of sci-fi brilliance. It is almost like the first half of the first book is a test, a gauntlet if you will, which weeds out those who are not worthy. Get past it, as I eventually did, and you have a gem.

Have Fun Reading.

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