First came contact, then genocide, now war.
The Nameless have superior technology, numbers and a willingness to accept casualties that goes beyond comprehension. Their aim, nothing less than the total destruction of humanity. All that stands in their way, five officers, a handful of ships… and the human need to survive!
I have to admit that this review might be colored towards the positive by the fact that this type of story is definitely one of my favorite ones. However, I did find this book to be, not only my type of story, but well written and with a set of characters that I took a liking to.
This book is perhaps less complex and have less world building than works like Doug Dandridge’s Empires at War but depending on your taste this may or may not work in the books favor. Personally, I like both the more complex Empires at War and this book.
The action starts fairly quickly with the first appearance of the Nameless. Then the book takes a bit of a pause while it introduces a few more of the main characters, deals with a bit of the usual depressing and destructive politics and generally sets the stage for the rest of the story.
After the first encounter I pretty much expected the war that is the name of the trilogy would start at full speed but the author threw in a research mission first just to expand the story a bit. Unfortunately, for the humans, this mission do not really reveal much about the nameless themselves but certainly about the effect of their actions. Let us say that it is not looking good for the humans unless they can repeal the nameless’ aggression.
After this little interlude the real action commences and the humans are quite rapidly learning, the hard way, that assumptions are the mother of all fuck-ups. Especially when making assumptions about the capabilities, or rather lack thereof, of your potential military adversaries. Speaking of action, the action in this book is generally well done with believable science fiction physics and decent enough military tactics and strategies.
Throughout the book we are following several key characters that I felt were all rather likable in different ways. They are all rather heroic of course but their careers have their ups and downs. Sometimes due to dumbass politics and sometimes due to their own actions.
Bottom line for me is that this was a book that I enjoyed quite lot and I will definitely read the rest of the series. I do hope that get to learn the reasoning behind the nameless seemingly fanatic wish to destroy other civilizations.