Erik Cain joined the marines to get off death row. The deal was simple; enlist to fight in space and he would be pardoned for all his crimes.
In the 23rd Century, assault troops go into battle wearing AI-assisted, nuclear-powered armor, but it is still men and blood that win battles. From one brutal campaign to the next, Erik and his comrades fight an increasingly desperate war over the resource rich colony worlds that have become vital to the economies of Earth’s exhausted and despotic Superpowers.
As Erik rises through the ranks he finally finds a home, first with the marines who fight at his side and later among the colonists – men and women who have dared to leave everything behind to build a new society on the frontier, one where the freedoms and rights lost long ago on Earth are preserved.
Amidst the blood and death and sacrifice, Erik begins to wonder. Is he fighting the right war? Who is the real enemy?
This book is far from perfect but I still liked it. I think it is a decent start of a new, for me at least, series. As the book blurb states Eric Cain joins the marines to escape his death penalty. What it does not say it that his death penalty is really a consequence of the unbelievably undemocratic, despotic North Korean like government on Earth. For Eric becoming a marine and getting away from Earth turns out to be a blessing.
The core story of the book is quite okay. There is, of course, a lot of marine style ground action going on and not so much happening in space but it is still good reading. I think the part of the background story with the despotic and corrupt government back on Earth is not the best part of the book, a bit depressing actually, but in the end it actually do not get to play a major role in the book except to kick it off so I can live with it.
The main problem with this book is that a lot of it reads like a report and not an adventure book. Sometimes events are just stacked one after another and told as a matter of fact with no or little feeling in it. First I did that then we did that and then we did another thing and then we won the fight…next chapter. First we did that then we did that… and so on for several pages. I do not know if this was the author’s first book or not but it certainly feels like it. Actually I have already read the next book in the series so I know for a fact that he has improved in this area.
Overall it is a worthwhile book to read if you like marine Sci-Fi. As I have already mentioned I am continuing to read the next books in this series.