Starfight series by T. Jackson King
My rating: ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ out of 5 stars
Wasp-like aliens kill all the senior officers of the starship fleet led by the Battlestar Lepanto. That puts Ensign Jacob Renselaer on the spot. Can he find out why the aliens killed his ship’s officers? Can he take command of the Battlestar? Does he want to be the leader of ten heavily armed starships that never expected to encounter aliens? Deep in the Kepler 22 star system, mutual misunderstanding between two peoples who cannot speak to each other leads to multiple space battles. Somehow Jacob becomes the leader he never wanted to be. His close friend Daisy the pilot helps him, as do other friends on the Battlestar. On the alien side, Hunter One is determined to kill the invaders who threaten his new colony world. His people the Swarm have never been defeated. Now, he faces Soft Skins who do not flee at the loss of their leaders. In a distant star system, people human and alien die, scheme, and fight for survival. None of them have ever faced combat before. But now, both sides learn what it is like to have someone seek your death and the death of your friends!
This is straightforward military Sci-Fi action and I have to say that I quite liked it.
It is a fairly standard story about a young Ensign who, due to various dramatic events, suddenly is trust into a situation of responsibility way above his rank. I am somewhat hooked on these kind of stories if they are well done and this one is indeed quite well done. Not wow great but still well done.
I really like the main character. He doesn’t whine all the time, he doesn’t run from his responsibility and he doesn’t hesitate to communicate by the means of BFGs (Big Fucking Guns) when the situation requires it.
In the second book an Admiral arrives to take command of what remains of the fleet and I was a bit worried that this would be the usual incompetent desktop admiral screws things up. Luckily it was nothing of the kind.
Of course there has to be at least one worthless whining asswipe that thinks he should have been in command and tries to throw sand into the machinery. Luckily that part of the story is not taking too much space. Not only that but (small spoiler ahead) the previously mentioned admiral is not as easily duped by the asswipe’s bullshit as the asswipe thinks. The Admiral’s takedown of the asswipe is brutal and colorful.
It’s military sci-fi so there has to be some military action in it. There’s quite a lot actually and it’s nicely written with a reasonable amount of realism in it.
My only gripe with the series is that this author has a tendency to use terms and expressions that he doesn’t master. Luckily he is not dabbling in French like he did in some other books, with disastrous results. He however fails in simple things like for example calculating Watts from Volts and Amperes. That’s just sloppy. Don’t throw in terms if you don’t master them.
Apart from that, as I wrote previously I quite liked this series.