In the final installment of the Demonstar series, things are still not going well for the Alliance. Barracuda has been destroyed. Simms is missing and feared dead. The Seat of the government has been assaulted and evacuated, the leaders of the government spread across the galaxy, hiding in secret shadow offices.
Baran Igashu, reeling from the loss of Penelope, takes the team back to the Redoubt to recover and prepare. Eventually the team cracks some of the codes on the Redoubt and Baran believes he can finally operate the Wormgate. With the two Krogan and another new team member the group begins their final preparations to jump to the Demon Homeworld and look for a weapon rumored to be able to destroy a planet in hopes of using it against their enemy.
As the battles continue, morale in the Alliance jumps to a war time high as Fleet finally begins to strike back at a few of the Demons forward bases. But as the war against the Demons gains momentum, the hidden group The Hand continues to harass key members of the Alliance and puts in motion plans that could endanger the very future of the Alliance even if Fleet does manage to win the war.
With the Forges working full-time to coat as many of the ships as possible with Blacksilver, the Chiefs start assembling the fleets for a final assault against the Demon Home system as Baran and his team jump to the Demon Homeworld. The outcome of the war hinges on skill, planning and a lot of luck from the elite Hadrian Team.
Be warned that this review have a slight spoiler at the end.
I definitely enjoyed this book but I also found it less enjoyable than the previous instalments in the Demonstar series. As with the previous books it takes off where the previous one left and we continue to follow Baran Igashu’s team in their struggle to reach the Demon Homeworld while the Alliance still struggles against The Hand.
The who-is-really-this-Baran-guy mystery have disappeared somewhat and he is now “only” a skilled leader who is even questioned among his team from time to time. He no longer felt like the mysterious uber-guy who was always right and had yet another ace up his sleeve at all times.
However, my main gripe with this book is that it has really gone a wee bit too much into fantasy land. The Wormgate which opens and closes on what appears to be a whim and spews out the ship in places where the team is supposed to perform some “quest” and then magically opens again and puts them in some other unexpected place when their quest is done is a bit too far-fetched for a Sci-Fi (non-Fantasy) novel as far as I am concerned. Running around on some planet searching warehouses for a super weapon was also a bit far-fetched to me.
The long winded talks and explanations from some of the team members about old Knights and their quests felt more like a filler than something that advanced the book. As a matter of fact this is another thing that I think dragged the book down a bit. There was really too much not so interesting talking going on between various people. I mentioned already in my previous review that that book was somewhat uneven and this one is the same but unfortunately the not so interesting parts have taken a greater part of this book.
There are some enjoyable fleet action near the end of the book but in general this is some of the things I hoped we would get plenty of in this, the last book in this story arc, but which appears to have taken a back seat to the other parts of the book.
Now, as I said, I still enjoyed the book. It just doesn’t get a full-star rating this time. The book is very well written and even the not so interesting parts are good reading, they are just not my type of reading. I would have liked Baran to be a bit more of his old self and, while I am a it, I would also have liked the Drucilla to play a more prominent role than she did. Especially after she turned up were she did turn up in the end. That was a nice surprise actually. I did not see that coming.
The ending of the book is partly predictable (but still nice) and partly adds a nice loose end as well as a good starting point for a second book series which hopefully will have Baran back in shape and as the main character. Even though I was not as thrilled by this book as the previous ones I will pick up another book by this author about Baran & Co if one comes out for sure.