A leading voice in military SF, best-selling author John Ringo teams with real-life rocket scientist Travis S. Taylor for an explosive entry from their Looking Glass series. Recovering from their first mission, the crew of the Vorpal Blade - humankind's first interstellar craft - is called into emergency action when an alliance gate colony is attacked. Who was the lethal alien enemy? What exactly happened at the colony? And dare the Vorpal Blade's battle-weary misfits engage a potentially superior force?
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I love Ganser's voice, goes well with the story. As usual with a male narrator, the women often sound a little dippy, but he does better than most, and there aren't that many women. The series is full of the mechanics of physics and military rules, battles, strategy, etc - fascinating and informative, in my opinion. Not much character development, and in this particular book I had a little trouble believing the story line about one of the main characters falling in love, but a relatively minor plot point. If you enjoy dry/wry humor, lots of testosterone and good ol' boy/Brere Rabbit/aw shucks American/Southern ingenuity that kicks the butt of aliens with advanced technology, the occasional deus ex machina, edge of your seat battle scenes, and alien worlds which seem unremittingly to have unbreathable air and inedible foods, this series will appeal to you. I've felt that all books were equally good so far. I listen to them while driving, and often stay in the car after arriving somewhere, so I can keep listening - definitely engages the attention. In the Looking Glass and Live Free or Die series, the main character has a lot of similarities - a man with advanced degrees, non-military but works closely with the military, over-achiever, good ol' boy whose drawl hides a steel trap mind, somewhat megalomaniacal, and can't sustain a long-term relationship with a significant other. Very US-centric, which I found a little unrealistic given the premise of this story line, but hey, author's choice. Despite the small picky points, I can't wait to listen to the next book in both series.
I enjoyed this book in general. The whole series is a fun bit of fluff Sc-Fi. The reason I wanted to write this review, though, is to pick on a couple of things that annoyed me, though not enough to remove more than one star from the overall picture.
The completely unnessary, tacked-on love story should have just been removed. Eric (Two-Gun) goes back home for a visit and starts catching the eye of this girl. They go on one date, and all of a sudden she's promising to not date other men and to wait for him to come home in spite of the odds against his survival.
Okay, it's not too unrealistic for something like that to happen. Teenage girls (and boys too) often get swept up in their feelings of the moment and all that. But nobody else in the story seems to think it's a little too much. After she receives a message from Eric, Eric's mother asks her if she's going to be her mother in law soon, and she replies "I hope so!".
Seriously? Nobody's saying, "Hey, you two have basically just met each other and been on ony one date! Don't you think you should slow things down a bit?"
And the scenes where she's pining for him and watching a video montage to a song from the war on terror... kind of cringe-inducing. I guess it's just some video that gave the author the feels and he felt he needed to work it in. He should have reconsidered.
By the way, spoiler alert, though not by any means a big one, he asks her to marry him when he gets back and she says yes.
Also, the dig against France at the end there was completely unnecessary and historically innacurate. It was just the authors feelings on the subject being thrown in ham-fisted.
But like I said, it was an entertaining bit of sci-fi fluff overall. I'm just the kind of guy who loves to nit-pick.