Original review posted Wednesday, January 23, 2013
Description: When starfighter pilot Simon Dodds is enrolled in a top secret military project, he and his wingmates begin to suspect that there is a lot more to the theft of a legendary battleship and an Imperial nation’s civil war than either the Confederation Stellar Navy or the government are willing to let on.
Within weeks of being reassigned to the Confederate border system of Temper, the five would begin to untangle a web of lies and a cover-up that seemed to span the length of the entire galaxy. And it would not be long before they themselves would come face to face with that which destroyed an empire: an unforgiving, unstoppable, and totally unrelenting foe.
There seemed to exist only one glimmer of hope of driving back the darkness: The ATAF Project – a secretly developed set of starfighters that may well just harbour some terrible secrets of their own.
Review 4 of 5 Stars
All in all I guess the best recommendation that can be given to a book is that I enjoyed, was entertained and intrigued enough by the book to buy the second one in the series. It was pretty much a fighter (ATAF) pilot story and the only real land-based scenes take place at the beginning on the Dodds’ apple farm. Everything else is on a ship, space station, etc. so it’s very much about the characters and the story unfolding. Even after reading the book I really don’t know enough about the enemy or what’s going on in Imperial space to satisfy my questions so I’m hoping the second book will provide me with more of those details. Never fear though, there’s plenty to keep you interested as you move along through the story and lots of unanswered questions, which I appreciate in the first book of a series. Simon (Dodds), Estelle, Chaz, Kelly and Enrique are the White Knights and after having not been chosen for the secret ATAF project they are later thrust into the middle of it with many questions of their own and not nearly enough answers from the brass. Overall, I enjoyed the book and as I stated at the beginning I did buy the next one in the series as it caught my attention enough to make me want to know more. There were some typos and incorrect word usage (and I don’t mean the kind that’s the difference between the US and UK) that tripped me up a couple of times (though not too bad), but the author suggests that if you’re going to read the whole series that you start with the second edition of this book instead of the first. I read the first version which may account for some of the editing issues, etc. Either way, no reason to pass up a good story for a few mistakes. Just roll right over it and enjoy the show.
Note: As I am moving my blog to WordPress, I am including the clarifying comment regarding the versions that the author made on my original post.
Thanks very much for the review!
The second edition of the novel is actually a rewrite, not just spelling and grammar fixes. It contains new chapters, an entirely new prologue, a new memoir style for Kelly Taylor’s journal (which is more consistent with that of the follow-up books), and more in-depth characterisation.
All in all, the second edition is about 20,000 words longer than the first!
The core story is identical, however, so it’s not like readers will fail to understand the second and third novels if they do not read the second edition.
Stephen J Sweeney