I like the Lost Fleet series by Jack Campbell, so I hate to say anything negative, but this book is just... not very good. The characters are 2 dimensional at best. The plot is pretty standard "soldiers go where they are ordered and fight who they are told to fight" books, and the dialog is incredibly repetitive. The characters have the same conversations over and over again about how stupid the officers are, and how civilians don't understand the military, and how stupid the officers are and so on. The combat is not very well written either. The physics of fighting with projectile weapons on the Moon isn't addressed, And the logistics of fighting that far away from the factories on Earth seem to be an afterthought. It is a very early book for Campbell, and it really shows. Listen to anything else by him.
blind guide dog handler, voracious reader, favorite authors: Jack Cambell, John Flanagan, BV Larson, David Drake.
It is difficult to rank Stark's War against the Other Jack Cambell Books I've read, but it is among my favorite.
The quick pace, humor, excellent story telling and plot with believable characters and situations.
That is a toss up between when when Stark covered the retreat of the Platoon and the confrontation between Sgt. Reynolds and Stark after he "fragged," their captain.
I laughed a lot and Jack Campbell, also caused me to think while I was laughing about the possibility of this becoming reality and not fiction.
The narrator was excellent with a variety of voices that stayed consistent. hHe brought the story to life with good delivery and timing.
Don't get me wrong, the underlying message and premise of this story was solid. Unfortunately, the author repeatedly slapped his audience in the head with his messages. Nothing subtle here, and it did the story a disservice.
The book did entertain me, but it could have been much more nuanced. The narrator was pretty good, but was a bit deadpan when not doing voices.
So, if you're interested in seeing what one author thinks of what military / civilian/ governmental relationships will look like in the distant future, give this one a listen, but don't expect too much.
Of note, the author does indicate this is his first novel, so you must take that into consideration. I'm assuming his writing style has matured since then.
The concept of the complete ineptitude of all officers, yet all enlisted are geniuses in waiting and the world would better if only they were in charge just got old. The situation is true and does happen, but the blanket, overall assumption and presentation that it was a constant in the universe just made it hard to suspend belief enough to enjoy the story.
Had the issue been a small collection of ignorant officers (and with the remoteness of the moonbase it could have been pulled off) it would have been more believable, but by making it sound as if the entire military organization was that bad all the time it just came across as unrealistic.....and this is from someone who loves SciFi and Fantasy.
Yes, I still love the action scenes even if the overarching story is not plausible.
If the overall theme is the same by the third book it will just be too boring.
I found the war sequences to be entertaining and the stuff in between to be cumbersome. However, I quickly got through the audiobook and promptly ordered the next book in the series. So if you like military science fiction and can overlook some weaknesses, pick it up.
I love that Jack captured the essence of a soldier's view of the world, and how that can go wrong when officers become politicians that treat them like numbers -- losing the battlesense that you can only get with real time on the ground -- not micro-managing from afar.
Stark himself is what soldiers aspire to be.
Executive Recruiter 20+ Years, father to six, spouse to one, grandfather to 4; specialist in Bipolar 2, Panic, Anxiety (OCD) & Addictions.
Audible productions are judged (by me at least) for the quality and consistency of the story line through multiple volumes (when appropriate) and then by the quality of the narrator. The input of the production unit, which is in the background and not seen or heard by we readers is of course relevant.
Stark's War is the first novel by this author and the first in a three volume series.
Elements of the story are quite gripping. The "US" and the "Corporations" have occupied the Moon and the military is often used as cannon fodder.
Characters are not typically well developed which is a pity as there a number of characters in each novel which seem to lend themselves to further treatment.
My remarks are made as I conclude the first volume in the series. Maybe later volumes will improve on this first book.
I am glad that I read the author's seven volume Lost Fleet series first. These are highly readable with many interwoven story lines.
Understand, that I like Jack Campell's writing a lot but the Stark series is not to my taste. The writing is well executed but the subject matter itself is the sort of thing one would expect from a person working out a psychological problem rather than spinning a good yarn. Basically, this is a story about how management is full of people who are not very smart, not very nice and only interested in furthering their own interests. This is a theme that gets hammered over and over. And over. While there are certainly a lot of things that can be said about micro management after a while it gets a bit boring.
Well written. The theme itself was simply not interesting.