Friday, April 01, 2016

March "Reads"/Reads

Long books plus long runs seems to even's out my audiobook listening. 

Hell's Foundations Quiver (Safehold #8) by 

  • Long book, long series. I think things are slowly coming to a head. Weber's villians, in this case Clinton, are always appropriately hatable that you feel sorry for the people on their team. Almost. David Weber is wordy but the sheer concept of this story keeps me coming back, the combination of "older" tech being aided by futuristic capabilities to help the good guys win really does make this a fun series to read. 4/5 (AB)
  • Disappointing. I have been a fan of Harry Turtledove for most of my life so I bought this on his name alone. And while the concept is interesting (The Yellowstone Supervolcano erupts!) it just doesn't feel like his other books. I get it, the idea is to abstract this massive, world changing event and put it up against a personal perspective of the people who are being affected. But this felt more like the disaster films I grew up on in the 80's and early 90's, right down to the corny characters. I don't think I can bring myself to get the next book of the series. I was bored. 2/5 (AB)
  • Good start to a series. Overall this book entertained (always the highest praise from me). The near future looks somewhat bright (at least there is star travel, though Earth itself is looking pretty grim). Following the story of someone from the modern equivalent of the projects (and on the dole) who earned the right to enlist, it is always interesting to me as someone who went through basic training in the USA to compare. Nothing too egregious leapt out at me and the progress of Andrew to first the local Army and then eventually to the Navy was entertaining (I like how when he showed up on his first ship the XO accuses him of being a PX Ranger (bought some awards at the PX that he didn't earn), though I suspect any real XO worth his salt wouldn't have given him the the chance). Overall I was excited to get started on the next book. 4/5 (AB)

  • If there is ever a book I have read that most clearly got started over a few drinks, this book is it. I imagine it went something like: "I bet you I can write a story where the nominal good guys wear Sigruden (the Lightning bolt of the SS)" "Hah, good luck with that"  And with that we have this book, which started as a short story and became this full length novel. Where the fricking remainder of the SS is rejuvenated to help Germany fight off the oncoming Posleen horde. Now I share some convictions with the author, Tom Kratman, a retired US Army Officer, so the way that certain parts of Germany are handled came off quite satisfying to me, but overall, like all the Posleen (Legacy of the Aldentia) world this is a grim world. Overall it was a solid addition to the the universe that was created by John Ringo. 4/5 (DB)

Lines of Departure (Frontlines #2) by 

  • Continuing a solid series. The storyline flashes forward 5 years to the re-enlistment of Andrew and his Girlfriend. The fight against the against the aliens is going not so well. Andrew has shifted from being a regular swabbie (after converting from being a regular grunt in the first book) to becoming a Combat Controller (basically a JTAC from my military experience. Still part of the space service but down in the mud coordinating air and space support). The best part of this was the humanizing of his relationship with Mother when he is down on leave, taking her out of the PRC and letting her experience some of the world around her). And after getting engaged to his girlfriend (and promising to be back in 6 months) he heads off to fight... not the aliens but the other part of humanity that has colonized deep space (Russian/China coalition). And then things get worse. Finally he is basically exiled (with a whole bunch of other people) onto some ice world.  And then things get worse again. 4/5 (AB)
Angles of Attack (Frontlines #3) by 
  • Surviving the trials of the last book, Andrew is now stuck out on the ice world. With a ragtag group of ships from both sides they finally start working together against the enemy menace. After going back to Earth-space, coming back to the ice world and then finally returning to Earth (and linking up with his fiancee) things of course take another bad turn. Looking forward to the next book to see where things go from there. (4/5) AB

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