By now David Birkenhead has all but defeated the Boyen Emperor, whose strength is but a shadow of what it was before the Battle of Wilkes Prime. His fleet has been shattered and with it his dreams of conquest. Yet the Emperor and his court fight desperately on, and the price of invading Imperious Prime remains too terrible to contemplate. Is there another, less-bloody way of ending the war besides invasion? And if so…what will it cost David personally? Should anyone, anywhere be expected to pay such a price?
This is the last of the books in The David Birkenhead Series. Despite my hesitations early on with the gene modified rabbit stuff as a central plot element I have now read all the books, or in some cases short stories really, and enjoyed all but two of them. Unfortunately one of the two I didn’t enjoy was this one.
I was hoping that this last book would be the grand finale but instead it’s more of a aftermath and not a very happy one at that. Most of the book is spent moaning about the sacrifices to be made and how it’s lonely at the top and how much David must sacrifice to perform his, now mostly political, duty. Every so often the author harps about how they are going to dismantle the costly war fleet in favor of more “cost-effective” half assed armed merchant ships since the “war is over”. Yeah, right. They’ve subdued one bad guy so another one will never ever appear? What a load of nonsense.
I suspect that the author is trying to make a some kind of political message but I don’t think it’s the right place for it and I certainly do not agree with some parts of it. In any case, all of this nonsense have essentially deprived the book of the action and general interest that the rest of the books managed to have.
On top of everything the author just had to add a completely unnecessary assassination at the end. Not only that but he invented a really really lousy explanation so it becomes even more depressing.
I’m afraid that I think this book is one of the more disappointing endings of any book series that I’ve read.