Michael Harmon has been there and done that. Rescued co-eds, killed major terrorists, stopped nuclear assaults. Now he'd just like to kick back and relax with his harem of lovelies. Unfortunately, the world keeps turning. Mike and the Keldara are back tracking down terrorists, rogue Russian bio-scientists and the doomsday weapon to end all doomsday weapons. It's going to take some very tough, hard and nasty people to stop the end of the world. Fortunately, there's Mike Harmon. The Hero of Ghost, Kildar and Choosers of the Slain, along with his company of elite mountain fighters, is sent on a mission to stop an advanced smallpox plague from being turned over to terrorists. But that will only be the beginning as the Kildar and his Keldara rush to stop a host of WMD attacks, coordinated to take out the very heartland of terrorism's enemies. It's a battle for culture, and this time the terrorists aren't aiming at just one building.
©2006 John Ringo (P)2013 Audible Inc.
Did you know you can put in a set of Ear-Buds, slap your Hearing Protectors over them, and Mow the lawn, Weed-Eat, etc, without your book being drowned out by engine noise? I recently listened to "Augustus" while wandering through the Roman Forum. I'm on my third set of "Sleep-Phones". I've been addicted to audible since 2004... I think my friends are starting to suspect I have a problem ;)
I've always been a huge fan of Ringo's books, and was glad to see Audible getting a lot more of his works on the site! (Thanks Audible!) I'm not sure though how this series is really, well, "Sci-Fi"... I guess there IS Science involved, and Fiction, but it's mostly "Near Current Times, Hard Corp Military Fiction". Which is fine by me, but if you're looking for Space Ships and Far-Futuristic Science Tech, "No so much"...
I've met Mr. Ringo many times, and been involved in "Extensive Pool-Side Conversations" at Dragon-Con and other such events with Mr. Ringo and many other Fans of his work, as well as a few "Sci-Fi personalities" that stopped by to join in from time to time.. We share a strikingly similar past (He was at Bragg, I was at Benning), and seem to even still tromp over the same ground while vacationing (passed him once in the Caribbean, and I think my last trip to Europe, from London to Rome and back, via Gibraltar and various Ports along the way, saw me get home about the time I heard Mr. Ringo was headed over there)... We even seem to have the same eclectic tastes in music and movies and books, not to mention I own a largish Mountain Top Ranch in SC that gets pretty much "Landed On" in one of his other Series of Books when the Posleen land and attack Northeast Ga, Northwestern SC, NC, etc.. ;) So I'm no stranger to the MANY various "out there things" that get discussed in VERY Well-Researched Detail when it comes to Mr. Ringo's Books...
But the B&D and S&M Hard Corp Descriptive Sex Scenes in THIS particular Series of books may catch you by surprise if you're not ready for them, and may cause a few folks to want to "Skip This One".. My Wife listens to the same books I do on our iPhones, and at one point she started laughing loudly, removed her ear buds, and said, "I SWEAR I think John's throwing in some of these descriptive sex scenes just to hear Audible's Narrator have to read them out loud to the public"... I don't think that's why he went "all out" on the DETAILED descriptions, but I also wouldn't put something like that past him if it crossed his mind to do so ;)
The Narrator of this Series, Jeremy Arthur, really does an outstanding job though! I HAD to rate the Narration on the whole series 5 Stars, even if it had been only for the way Mr. Arthur gets through many "difficult" parts without so much as a stutter! Luckily, that wasn't the only reason I gave his Narration 5 Stars, he really does a great job all through the Series, especially with his exacting diction, and even using the proper dialects, of the foreign languages! I can't say I've ever heard a Narrator use different Accents between a character from around Moscow, and then change the Russian accent to the one used by characters from closer to the "Georgia Area" (The Country, not the State)... That was even more "Over the Top" than the precise Military Details in the "over the top" action all through this series! Mr. Arthur can even "Becky Ara-bee" (and Farsi, etc ;) convincingly! I have to say I'm highly impressed by the effort he obviously put into "getting things right" in his Narration!
If you like Military Sci-Fi, as I do, then you'll probably highly enjoy this series (as I have).. But if you're turned off by long and VERY descriptive Hard Corp Sex scenes, you probably won't get very far into Book 1. You know the sex is over the top when THAT is mostly what you discuss in your review, while seeming to forget to mention "getting smacked in the face by bone fragments and someone's intestines" ;)
Definitely "NOT For the Kiddies"!
"Just keeps getting better...."
Paladin of Shadows is turning out to be fantastic series and a must read for any John Ringo fans.
After listening to Ghost and Kildar; I have just purchased the rest of the series. The books follow on like in the Legacy of the Aldenata series.
Great fun, fast paced action with an epic story line but thought provoking as well, with interesting details about different styles of military force organisation, Special Forces tactics and strategy, geopolitics and terrorism, espionage, cutting edge military technologies, even ancient warrior history and beer brewing…!
While not hard Science fiction when compared to his later books, this series introduces many of the themes and big ideas that he develops in latter books like the Troy Rising series and in the Last Centurion, also passing references to the ideas of the great Robert A Heinlein.
Military and Adventure SF fans will certainly enjoy this as will all fans of more traditional military authors like Chris Ryan and Andy McNab, Tom Clancy and Patrick Robinson also those who enjoy Adventure and Thriller writers like Wilbur Smith, Larry Bond, Stephen Coonts, Dale Brown, Matthew Reilly.
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