Avid book reader and fan of quality audibles.
When I listen to a book by Jack Campbell, I rarely feel compelled to hit the pause button. Tarnished Knight was no exception. Following the Syndicate defeat at the hands of Black Jack and the Alliance, the book is focused on the Midway star system and two former Syndic CEO's who have decided to create a new independent government. The author does a great job with the pacing, focusing on not just the politics but also on action both on the ground and in space. I especially enjoyed the battle preparation sequences and the battles themselves since they held my attention so effectively.
The narration was passable but was perhaps the most questionable point of the experience. The narration of the inner dialog of the CEO's gave me pause, as did some of the voices chosen for the various characters. Thankfully, the voices were not offensive and the inner dialog was rare. The rest of the narration got the job done, but definitely left me asking "why this guy?" at times. I felt the monotone and passionless narration helped highlight flaws in the writing that may have been less obvious if a more suitable narrator read the story.
Despite my concerns over the narration, Tarnished Night by Jack Campbell kept me captivated and in a good mood as I listened. When the book was completed, all I could think was "when can I buy the next book?"
I knew right from the start (based on the reviews) that this listen would not be as well-done as the rest of the series, and the reviews proved to be correct. I wouldn't say that this was a bad listen, because I am a die-hard fan of Jack's series and I am willing to put up with a lemon. I listened because this book focuses on the Syndicate Worlds, a part of the universe that I wanted to learn more about. Jack fulfilled in that regard. But the narrator sometimes ran different characters together, which proved occasionally confusing and annoying. He was not the best narrator for Jack's style of writing. Was my time well-spent? I would say yes and no. Yes because I am curious about the Syndicate way of doing things, no because Jack let me down this time around. Like the reviewers have said, this book was just not the same as the rest of the series. Where Dauntless was riveting and well-paced, this was dull. Where I was rooting for Geary when he went into a battle and moved by his marriage, this was like watching paint dry. And I hate watching paint dry.
That's the thing- it doesn't compare.
I understand his difficulty but I paid for this book. Sometimes when I read one of Jack's books, I myself got confused and had to backtrack to find out which character was speaking. I can only guess that that was Marc's difficulty, also. Maybe someone else should narrate next time.
I have said what needed to be said. Maybe better luck next time, Jack.
Yes, I own all but one of the Lost Fleet series and think they are well done. For this one he has changed his writing style so that for me it was very confusing and very hard to follow.
Up until now Jack kept his Point of View to mainly one character per book. This time he's jumping all over the place.
Yes, Jack please return to your one main character point of view.
Machiavellian evolving democracy
Gives a view into what's going on behind the scenes with some of the key minor characters from the Lost Fleet series.
Marc's a solid narrator, and this performance is no different. I don't hesitate to purchase books he's read.
Not really, no. The main characters, as former CEOs of the Syndicate Worlds, developed extremely Machiavellian outlooks on life. Therefore, they are hard-pressed to be truly heroic, although they're cautiously moving towards breaking those behavior patterns. They come across a basically good people who have learned to be ruthless in order to survive a system that punished altruism.
If you enjoy the Black Jack series, you should enjoy this. Fills in background on some of the Syndicate characters met in the Black Jack series, and provides insight into the Syndicate worlds structure and history.
Cliff-hanger ending left me anxious for the next in this series.
The style and pace are pretty consistent with the previous books of the series in this universe. I was a bit startled and fairly disappointed with the abruptness of the ending; it seemed like there was a good solid chapter missing. I would understand if it was a cliff hanger, but this didn't seem the case.
Maybe next time.....
Probably. I'm a big fan of the lost fleet series, but found this book incredibly boring. Don't expect the epic space battles and fast moving plots of the earlier books in this series.
How about some action and character development? This book is political intrigue minus the intrigue.
I couldn't keep the dialog between characters straight. The narrator sounded as bored with the story as I was.
The book has no redeeming value and adds nothing the the Lost Fleet series.
I doubt i would buy any more of these books the stores are getting so slow i could use them to fall a sleep at night with,
Yes , but not the genre but the series yes, it is like he is just writing them for the money
Audio was ok
No let this dieing horse go
I think my review says it all
My wife says she can read me like an open book. Though she regrets not being able to shut me up the same way. :)
STOP! If this is your first Jack Campbell title, then you'll thank me later for following my suggestion to hold off on this title until after you've completed the "Lost Fleet" and the "Lost Fleet: Beyond the Frontier" series. Don't worry, you're not losing anything by it. In fact, you'll be gaining a great audio library.
For Lost Fleet vets, you'll enjoy this title. But, don't expect a continuation of Blackjack's exploits here.
This title takes a detour down a parallel track -- one that follows the evolution of the Syndic's Midway star system/government. (You may remember CEO Iceni had a small-ish part in one of the Lost Fleet: Beyond Frontier titles. She takes a starring role in this one.)
Suffice to say, it's a culture shift after having you and I grow up in Alliance space.
It's a nice detour, though, that opens up a potentially whole new storyline -- or two -- for Jack Campbell to explore with us.
Also, Audible picks up a new narrator here. In place of Christian Rummel, we're graced with the performance of Marc Vietor.
Mr. Vietor is good -- that is, as far as one good voice can carry the performance. But it may take some indulgence on your part to get used to the limited inventory he has in his character-voice library. With limited range, all the characters end up sounding similar. :( But, don't let that dissuade you. It's not bad. It's good, in fact -- it's just that it could've been better with more diversity in character-voices.
MY BOTTOM LINE: Expect range limitations in character voices. Expect the mis-pronunciation of CEO Iceni's name (also initially annoying). But, the sooner you can get past those two issues, then the sooner you can sit back and enjoy another great story from Mr. Campbell.
En Dieu Ma Foy
Campbell's latest work in his world of Alliance and Syndicate is a look into the world of the Syndicate. Focusing in on the world of Midway, Campbell spends less time in space and more time looking at human nature and diplomacy in a world "liberated" from Facist rule. As in the Lost Fleet Series, Campbell does a fantastic job of covering the riot of emotions and ideas that work to rebuild a world left devistated by 100 years of war. This look into the Syndicate world is a great addition to the Lost Fleet and Beyond the Frontier series. The Lost Stars Tarnished Knight series is going to be just as addictive to its readers as Campbell's previous series.
Marc Vietor is a change in narrator for the latest Campbell books, but it's a good fit since this is a new view of the same world and having Christian Rummel read it would have been good but not great. Marc Vietor takes Campbell's new world and makes it live and fight in the minds eye. Truly a great read all the way around.