For the poor, hardworking citizens of the Confederacy's fringe worlds, the Guild Wars have exacted a huge toll. Swayed by the promise of financial rewards, a new batch of recruits joins the fight alongside a slew of mysteriously docile criminals -- and a few dubious military leaders. Eighteen-year-old Jim Raynor, full of testosterone and eager to make things right at home, ships off to boot camp and finds his footing on the battlefield, but he soon discovers that the official mission is not what he's really fighting for.
For the first time ever, StarCraft enthusiasts will learn the origins of the enduring friendship between the young upstart Jim Raynor and the streetwise soldier Tychus Findlay. Watch as they battle on the front lines of a fierce interplanetary war and bear witness to the Confederacy's rank corruption - corruption so reprehensible that it rains immeasurable death and destruction upon the government's own people.
©2010 William C Dietz (P)2010 Simon & Schuster
I have read many of the current Starcraft books out there today, but none of them compare to this. It has action, love, Marnies, and able to follow the beginnings of Jim Raynor. Whats better is that the store talks about the Trade Guild wars that has been talked about and how some of the beginnings of the units that we love in the game. The voice acting is pretty good I was able to tell how was talking and even the actor Neil Kaplan plays the voice of Tychus Findlay in Starcraft 2 so that it me makes the book even better is hearing the real voice of the main character speaking. As a last note if you want a good solid backstory to the game you love the get this book asap. Do you scan me.
P.S.(you'll get that later)
The title of this review kind of says it all. The narrative moves at a decent pace and the story itself is a decent story. And like any good product based on existing product, there are plenty of references to the source material that are inserted tastefully.
The problem is that it's all kind of your standard stuff. The various initial stories eventually cross with one another. There are main plots and subplots and it all wraps up nicely in the end. And it even explains a lot when you return to the original game that it's based off of.
Basically, it begins, it chugs along, and 12 hours later it ends.
I would say the best part of the entire package was the voice actor, who was great.
If you love Starcraft You will love this book. Its well written and fun to read. I love that the voice artist is actually from Starcraft 2. About half way done with the book now and cant wait till I finish the other one. I just wish this web sigh could get more Starcraft books.
Sometimes bad narration can kill a well written book. Heaven's Devils does the opposite.
I had just played through the game for the first time and was hungry for more when I picked this one up. And in that regard, this book acted as a nice little (if a bit stale) dessert to the three course meal that was Starcraft II. Being read by the voice of Tychus Findlay, one of the more memorable characters in the game (and also a featured character in this book) was a really nice touch, but that eventually became the only thing that kept me listening. And eventually, even that didn't keep me interested enough to bother with the last half hour.
As you've probably guessed, the problem rests with the writing, but I'd feel wrong calling it outright bad. It's not bad on a technical level. It's competently written in that the scenes are set with the right amount of detail, the characters are consistent and occasionally funny (though not as funny to me as they were meant to be), lots of juicy lore and world-building, shit blows up on a fairly regular basis, coitus ensues; it's everything you expect from a Starcraft novel. Everything except for the effort. So it's not bad. It's bland.
Apart from the background bits of lore that dive into what it was like to live in the Confederacy before the Dominion (probably my favorite part aside from Kaplan's narration), the rest of the novel just sort of gives a token effort at plot once the requisite "How Jimmy met Tychus" scene happens. Again, you expect the plot to be about corrupt Confederate officers that the protagonists eventually rebel against because it's Starcraft and that's par for the course, but that's the problem: It's Starcraft by the numbers, except with no Zerg or Protoss to spice things up. It's like watching a slow 1v1 between two Terrans and one player has all the hero units and keeps saying in chat that he's giving the other guy a one-fingered salute.
Did you think the phrase "one-fingered salute" was funny? I hope so. Because the author uses it about eighty-seven thousand times.
Thankfully, most of the actual effort seems to have gone into the interactions between Jim and Tychus. It's both cool and kinda sad seeing how far back they go, especially after (or before) playing the game. And of course, every one of Tychus's lines are fun to listen to. Kaplan also has this weird habit of making every woman sound like she's baked. But sadly, the other characters are some serious swings and misses. To name a few, there's the son of an old Confederate family in the military under a fake identity who's kind of interesting, but gets way too much page time. And there's a woman named Sanchez who shows up way too late and doesn't stick around nearly as long as she should have. There's also a character addicted to a drug made up specifically for this book that solely exists to let this character be addicted to something as a plot point, but the author seems to have absolutely no idea how people who do drugs talk about drugs or how they talk or act at all. Apart from the way one chapter ended that felt somewhat real, the rest of the stuff involving the character's habit felt like a very special episode of [insert any given 90's sitcom].
But overall, it wasn't too bad. I knew what I was getting myself into, and now you do too.
Yes i would recommend this book if you are a fan of Mr. Dietz's style. However it is difficult
to get past Mr. Kaplin's narration style. Kaplin gets a little better ( or I get use to him ) as the book goes on. It was difficult for me to get into this one.
I usually enjoy Mr. Dietz's books and follow him.
I will try more of Mr. Kaplans performances just to see if its me this time or if his style.
I listen to these books for enjoyment not for inspiration
The voice inflections of the character's was not believable ... Way to harsh for most situations.
For those of you looking for another great sci-fi war story but haven't played the game, you may be wondering if you need knowledge of the mythos to understand and enjoy this book. The answer is no, the book makes no assumptions about you're fore-knowledge and in fact the story may be better if you have not read the books as this prequel does not spoil anything. This is a story unto-itself not a gimmick or a ride along to the games. The narrator is excellent and the story is exciting, well plotted, and well placed. Their are very few sci-fi books I could recommend more.
I have been a huge fan of StarCraft since 1998, and this book is definitely a fantastic explanation as to Jim Raynor's origin, as well as his relationship with Tychus from Starcraft II. The narrator is none other than Mr. Tychus Findley himself, and though at the beginning of the story his characters are messy incarnations, by the middle you are already forgetting it's one man reading the story, and by the end you will be wishing there were more StarCraft novels available on Audible!
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