I recognized the name B.V.Larson first as one that I’d read before but I couldn’t figure out or exactly remember where I’d heard of him, but as this was another find on Kindle Unlimited, I thought it was definitely worth pursuing and I’m actually really glad I did.
His previous books – one of which I’ve reviewed already on this site – were good. This one however is really good! It reminds me a lot of the Nicholas Seafort series which starts with Midshipman’s Hope & while that series is definitely better written and quite possibly more interesting, this one has quite a bit of promise! Sorry I know that comparison seems like I’m not really selling it, but this book actually is quite interesting and I enjoyed it thoroughly.
As a really quick summary the story boils down to something like the following. Earth had established a small interstellar empire with several different colony worlds and more continually being founded. However when a solar flare disrupts the wormhole network that connects these splintered colonies together, Earth is left alone once more. With widespread devestation throughout the solar system, the colonies are left to wither as a secondary concern and gradually Earth focuses more and more on issues closer to hom. Hundreds of years later however, it seems that the colonies haven’t necessarily forgotten or even forgiven Earth for their abandonment and they have some lessons of their own they want to deliver.
While it starts out quite slowly – I have to admit I almost gave it up while reading the 1st quarter of the book – it becomes quite interesting and enjoyable once they discover the derelict in space and its single lone occupant. When she describes the world that she came from and her people as well as the ongoing struggle her people are currently in the midst of – well it just entices you even more. The enemy are particularly well designed and conceived and with their abilities – well, they could be literally anyone!
Is it to the caliber of David Weber or the aforementioned author (David Feintuch) of the Nicholas Seafort saga? No, its not – the ideas are interesting and the characters are enjoyable. You can definitely see a progression in the writing style of Mr. Larson from his Swarm series of books (I enjoyed book 1 in this series as you can see from my review there, however that enjoyment waned as I read the rest of the series unfortunately) and this is not only written better, the underlying ideas/thoughts and concepts are presented in a more cogent manner. His characterization of the Guard forces and their underlying sense of loyalty and ethics is particularly good and I very much enjoyed this.