The Last Hunter book 1 & 2 – Shaky start but improved in book 2.

The Last Hunter and Bonds of Blood.
The Last Hunter #1 and #2.
By J.N. Chaney and Terry Mixon.
My rating ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ 1/2 (average) out of 5 stars.

Blurb from book one:

Those that fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.

Two centuries after the Confederation staved off an invasion by the robotic Locusts, Captain Jack Romanoff faces mandatory retirement from an ever-shrinking Navy. Actions speak louder than words. The Confederation doesn’t think the Locusts are coming back.

But what if the politicians are wrong?

Snared in a scheme he doesn’t fully understand or trust, Jack gets his promotion, but it comes with a catch. With a crew of rejects, he must restore the most powerful warship humanity has ever built, after centuries of neglect and decay, before time runs out.

If he fails, humanity might not need to worry about history repeating itself ever again.

After having read the first book of The Last Hunter series I held off on writing a review until I had read the second book. I really wanted to like the first book. The book is well written and I really liked the main protagonist but… I really disliked the story.

So I said to myself that there is a chance that book two will pick up in a direction that is more palatable to me so I held off on the judgement until I had read it. Well long story short, it did indeed do so. I still have some reservations but it was definitely an improvement and with how the second book ended I have some hope that it will continue to improve.

So, the first book then. It is, as I wrote well written and the main protagonist is everything I like in a main protagonist. The problem I have with the book is firstly that it is really quite slow and it never really gets into any action at the very end. I could have lived with that since the idea of Captain Jack Romanoff taking this crew of rejects, that is actually now quite true but never mind, fixing up the most powerful warship and goes off kicking some invader ass is very much to my liking. Even if the author takes most of a book to get there.

However, now we get to the second and main problem I have with this book. The author have created a universe where the human navy is so utterly corrupt and incompetent that it really ruins the entire book for me. It is so bad that I almost put the first book in the two out of five star range.

I mean come on, “officers” are openly buying their commands and the admirals openly support it, they embezzle funds, they block supplies that Jack should have out of spite and they even resort to attempted murder. This scheming, these political shenanigans or to put it in plain English, this bullshit is going on the entire book and it basically ruined the book for me.

Fast forward, or should I say speed read, to the second book.

As I already wrote the second book is an improvement over the first one. For starters they got the ship moving and it plays out in a war zone rather than being docked as a museum piece.

There is still a lot of the rubbish scheming, incompetent and corrupt commanders and all that going on which is really annoying. I mean come on (again), the humans have just got their asses handed to them and these asshats, well those that remains at least, are still continuing like nothing has happened and doing their best to screw any hope humanity has of surviving. Apart from being really annoying it is so far out that it is just not believable.

It is also annoying that, thanks to previously mentioned corruption, Jack’s ship is only at a fraction of the fighting capacity that it should be at. I really hope that get’s rectified pretty soon. If they only have 15% of the guns operational now and still kicks ass I really want to see what they can do when they are fully operational.

What saves this book and makes it an improvement of the previous one is that, this time, these despicable asshats are truly getting what they deserve in the end. Not only the asshat Captain but all the way up to the corrupt admiral. It also happens in ways, and with a severity and finality, that at least somewhat makes up for all the nonsense I had to read through to get to this point.

Thus I think that at the end of the second book we are set up to go in a more positive direction and actually fight the real enemy instead of a bunch of domestic assholes. The author writes well so if the story can just get on the right track this series can become really good. The blurb for the next book, expected to come out sometime in June, do indeed sound promising.

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