Books Science Fiction

Cassastorm – I am afraid I did not like this one as much as the previous ones

CassastormCassastorm (Cassastar, #3) by Alex J. Cavanaugh
My rating: 6 out of 10 stars

A storm gathers across the galaxy…

Byron thought he’d put the days of battle behind him. Commanding the Cassan base on Tgren, his only struggles are occasional rogue pirate raids and endless government bureaucracies. As a galaxy-wide war encroaches upon the desert planet, Byron’s ideal life is threatened and he’s caught between the Tgrens and the Cassans.

After enemy ships attack the desert planet, Byron discovers another battle within his own family. The declaration of war between all ten races triggers nightmares in his son, shaking Bassan to the core and threatening to destroy the boy’s mind.

Meanwhile the ancient alien ship is transmitting a code that might signal the end of all life in the galaxy. And the mysterious probe that almost destroyed Tgren twenty years ago could be on its way back. As his world begins to crumble, Byron suspects a connection. The storm is about to break, and Byron is caught in the middle…

I really liked the first book in the Cassastar series. The second was also good reading and I have been looking forward to this one, the third in the series. This is also a good book but it went off in a direction that I was not so happy with. Although there are some skirmishes this is not exactly a book that I would classify as military science fiction. Neither was the previous one but I still enjoyed that one. The first book, the best one in the series, was most definitely military science fiction and this is what made me start reading the series.

Byron is still one of the main characters in this book however the book is really more about his son Bassan than anything else. It follows from the second book and the discovery of alien relic on Tgren. It jumps quite a few years ahead though. Mysterious things happens to Bassan when he touches one of the consoles in the relic and to keep everyone on their toes the mysterious probe returns, this time wreaking havoc and destruction where it goes.

So far so good. However, this is when the story starts to dig itself down in a racial theme with a lot of prejudice and stereotypes on all sides. It also starts to talk about an 11th race made up by randomly mixing the other 10 races in the book. This just sounds ludicrous to me. From this point the book just spent way too much energy bickering about racial issues, arguing over half-breeds etc. The ending was pretty imaginative but at the same time more of the same finger-pointing this time with a strong dose of anti-war preaching added.

Now, I have nothing against the message as such but I am not a great fan of these things embedded in what I expected to be more of an adventure book, and I thought the random mixing of races and then calling it an 11th race was not a good one. Thus I did not really get the same enjoyment out of this book as I did out of the previous ones.

As I wrote above, it is still a good book. Just not as good as I hoped.

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