Arthur’s Seat had never sought a galactic role. A relatively new colony world, a mere three hundred years old, the planet was always isolated from the galactic mainstream. But with the Empire crumbling after the fall of Earth, and other planets taking advantage of the chaos to make their own bids for power, Arthur’s Seat suddenly finds itself playing host to tens of thousands of unwanted immigrants, refugees who have been kicked off countless other worlds.
But as the planetary government struggles to integrate the newcomers, powerful factions plot to take advantage of the situation and the refugees struggle to carve out a place for themselves, it becomes clear that the entire planet is on the verge of anarchy …
… And outright civil war may not be far away.
The author has decided that every second book in The Empire’s Corps series is a “side story” usually about some specific subject, most often a political one. Sometimes it is still a very entertaining book, sometimes not so much. Especially if you really do not like politics in your reading. I am afraid that this one was more of the latter for me.
Now before we start let me make it clear that, technically, the book is as good as I would expect from this author. It is well written and I do like the characters. Well, the ones I am expected to like at least. There are plenty of assholes in this book.
The book is on the subject of immigration. In particular immigration from vastly different cultures. A subject that deserves discussion for sure. Especially a honest and factual discussion. However, regardless of whether I agree with the authors opinions on the subject or not, I rarely find books with too much political undertone in them very enjoyable.
Not only is the politics both boring and frustrating but the story does become somewhat predictable. Especially if the author tries to mirror reality which I believe this author does. 50 000 immigrants are dumped on a relatively small human colony more or less by force. Said immigrants are fanatical to the extreme, bigoted and treats their women like dirt (I guess you can see where this is going…). The sitting leaders of the colony are too inexperienced and too weak to handle the situation. Anyone with a minimum of intelligence can predict what happens next.
There are a number of characters that were quite enjoyable to follow even though it was quite frustrating to see them getting screwed over by the weak and appeasing politicians. These parts of the book almost felt like some kind of combined drama/reality show.
In the end the die hard fanatics turns out to be just as stupid and disconnected from reality as expected, the more realistic elements of the political establishment took over and the more deplorable elements of the fanatics got dealt with. Not until shit had hit the fan of course and equally of course, it was the innocent population that had to suffer as well as clean up the mess.
I have to say that I do not like to write a rather negative review for this author since his works normally pleases me greatly. However I would, again, like to point out that there is nothing wrong with the actual quality of the writing. My gripe with the book is strictly subjective and personal as far as the story goes.