Books Marines Military Science Fiction

The Tarnished Knight

Tarnished KnightThe Tarnished Knight (The Lost Stars, #1) by Jack Campbell
My rating: 7 out of 10 stars

The authority of the Syndicate Worlds’ government is crumbling. Civil war and rebellion are breaking out in many star systems despite the Syndic government’s brutal attempts to suppress disorder. Midway is one of those star systems, and leaders there must decide whether to remain loyal to the old order or fight for something new.

It took me quite a while to read this book but that was not really due to the book itself but rather to us having been quite occupied with repainting, tiling, birthdays etc. so I have not had as much time to read as I usually do.

This book is the first in a new spin-off series (The Lost Stars) from Jack Campbell’s The Lost Fleet series. I quite enjoyed The Lost Fleet series and, so far, it looks like I will enjoy this series as well.

I have to admit that I was a bit hesitant at first given that this series, to some extent, deals with a view from the side of the bad guys in the previous books. I usually never find that kind of story as amusing to read since I am always somewhat biased by the fact that the previous books, if they were any good, have instilled a certain animosity towards these guys in me.

One issue I had with The Lost Fleet series was the politics and bickering by useless commanders who thought the military was some kind of democracy and even their own political playground. This was another thing that I was afraid might be the case with this book since the two main characters obviously was not exactly going to be best buddies from the start.

Luckily none of my fears came true, at least not true enough to be a problem. I found the book quite enjoyable. Maybe not as enjoyable as the best of the Lost Fleet books but nonetheless, quite enjoyable.

It becomes quite clear from the start that the two main characters, Drakon and Iceni, are not Syndicate goons and wants nothing more to do with the Syndicate government. There are quite a bit of politics, mistrust and some behind the back scheming in the book but it is well managed in the plot and, unlike the plonkers in some of the Lost Fleet books, these two people are skilled professionals who are victims of a corrupt and totalitarian system.

Both of them struggle to trust other people, something which could not be done during the Syndicate rule, at the same time as they are trying to hold together and defend the star system that they have wrestled out of the syndicate hands.

There is of course a reasonable amount of action both on the ground and in space. As usual the author creates believable physics and, consequently, believable battles between space ships.

It’s definitely a good start. I’m looking forward to read the continuation of this and I hope the author manages to keep a balance between the politics and the real action. With this opening salvo it can go either way and personally, I would vote for the action and not so much for the politics as usual.

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