Crown of Slaves – Disappointing, slow and way too long.

Crown of Slaves (Crown of Slaves, #1).
By David Weber and Eric Flint.
My rating ⭐ ⭐ out of 5 stars.

The Star Kingdom’s ally Erewhon is growing increasingly restive in the alliance because the new High Ridge regime ignores its needs. Added to the longstanding problem of a slave labor planet controlled by hostile Mesans in Erewhon’s stellar backyard, which High Ridge refuses to deal with, the recent assassination of the Solarian League’s most prominent voice of public conscience indicates the growing danger of political instability in the Solarian League—which is also close to Erewhon.

In desperation, Queen Elizabeth tries to defuse the situation by sending a private mission to Erewhon led by Captain Zilwicki, accompanied by one of her nieces. When they arrive on Erewhon, however, Manticore’s envoys find themselves in a mess. Not only do they encounter one of the Republic of Haven’s most capable agents—Victor Cachat—but they also discover that the Solarian League’s military delegation seems up to its neck in skullduggery.

And, just to put the icing on the cake, the radical freed slave organization, the Audubon Ballroom, is also on the scene—led by its notorious and ruthless assassin, Jeremy X.

This book was a disappointment for me. I have really liked a lot of the books in David Weber’s Honorverse. Especially the first books with Honor Harrington as the main protagonist. Unfortunately in a lot of the later books Weber has spun out control in terms of verbosity. The books have been filled with dialogue, dialogue and more dialogue to the detriment of the action and adventure that made me enjoy his books in the first place.

Lately I have read some of Weber’s book that I quite enjoyed again. For example Governor and a Call to Insurrection.

This book however was 700+ pages of slow moving overcomplicated plot with so many different characters, each described and talking, talking, talking for hundreds and hundreds of pages, that it was almost unreadable. When there finally was some decent action towards the very end it in no way made up for having slugged through all those pages of bla bla.

When Weber decides to write action, especially fleet action in the Honorverse, he is one of the best authors today. Since I know how much I like his books when he sticks to this, the near total absence of this just added to the disappointment of this book.

I do not know what Eric Flint actually brings to the table for this book but it was obviously nothing good as far as I am concerned. I do not know if the comical nonsense around “Queen Berry” towards the end came from Flint or Weber but it just made my disappointment of this book worse.

Technically it is a very well written book. Weber know how to write and how to build a story and a scenario. That is really the only reason I gave this book two stars instead of one.

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