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Steel World: Undying Mercenaries, Book 1 | [B. V. Larson]

Steel World: Undying Mercenaries, Book 1

In the 20th century Earth sent probes, transmissions, and welcoming messages to the stars. Unfortunately, someone noticed. The Galactics arrived with their battle fleet in 2052. Rather than being exterminated under a barrage of hell-burners, Earth joined their vast Empire. Swearing allegiance to our distant alien overlords wasn't the only requirement for survival. We also had to have something of value to trade, something that neighboring planets would pay their hard-earned credits to buy. As most of the local worlds were too civilized to have a proper army, the only valuable service Earth could provide came in the form of soldiers....
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Publisher's Summary

In the 20th century Earth sent probes, transmissions, and welcoming messages to the stars. Unfortunately, someone noticed. The Galactics arrived with their battle fleet in 2052. Rather than being exterminated under a barrage of hell-burners, Earth joined their vast Empire. Swearing allegiance to our distant alien overlords wasn't the only requirement for survival. We also had to have something of value to trade, something that neighboring planets would pay their hard-earned credits to buy. As most of the local worlds were too civilized to have a proper army, the only valuable service Earth could provide came in the form of soldiers…someone had to do their dirty work for them, their fighting and dying.

I, James McGill, was born in 2099 on the fringe of the galaxy. When Hegemony Financial denied my loan applications, I was kicked out of the university and I turned to the stars. My first campaign involved the invasion of a mineral-rich planet called Cancri-9, better known as Steel World. The attack didn't go well, and now Earth has entered a grim struggle for survival. Humanity's mercenary legions go to war in Steel World, best-selling author B. V. Larson's latest science fiction novel.

©2013 B. V. Larson (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

What Members Say

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4.3 (3718 )
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  •  
    D corona, ca United States 12-05-13
    D corona, ca United States 12-05-13 Member Since 2015

    I read, I write; I listen

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Classic Space Opera"

    Cast from the mold of Star Ship Troopers and B.V. Larson’s other great space adventure, his Space Force series, Steel World; Undying Mercenaries is a high speed, high adventure, military Sci-Fi, page turner.
    Having already submitted to the vast empire of the Galactics, Earth is in a struggle for survival and humanities legions of mercenaries must battle on planet Cancri-9, better known as Steel World to endure; but death is not the usual final obstacle as these mercenaries have the ability to regenerate.
    It’s an interesting concept, the book has several plot twists and the characters are well developed and believable.
    This is a story begging to be a series; and the narrator, Mark Boyett, gives a great performance.

    31 of 37 people found this review helpful
  •  
    BookWorm Cary, NC 12-08-13
    BookWorm Cary, NC 12-08-13 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Solid 5 Star Military SciFi Audiobook"
    What did you love best about Steel World?

    I only wish all audiobooks were this good. This one was excellent from start to finish, everything from the story, character development and narration were flawless. I love it when a story hooks me from the first page and holds on until the end.

    Another thing I liked about this book was that the characters were believable, as in they acted like real people and each had unique flaws. An annoying thing about some action stories is the way that that characters are often 2 dimensional and the hero is some kind of superman, not so in this one. Also I liked the way there was the political infighting and backstabbing in the Legion unit. In my experience, any time you get a bunch of people together you're going to have that kind of thing and yet its often an element that's left out of fiction (the B grade fiction anyway). I spent 20 years in the US Army, and the unit portrayed in this story seemed like a real military unit, the terms and technology were different but the people acted in a way consistent with my experience of how real soldiers talk and act.

    I would rate this book right up there with some of my other favorite military fictional reads, to list a few: A Hymn Before Battle (Posleen War Series by John Ringo), Red Storm Rising and Without Remorse by Tom Clancy, Invasion America Series by Vaughn Heppner, Armor by John Steakley, Starship Troopers by Robert Heinlein and Redliners by David Drake.

    I'm looking forward to reading the next book in the Undying Mercenaries series.


    23 of 32 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael New Orleans, LA 12-16-13
    Michael New Orleans, LA 12-16-13 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "You want great military scifi? Lock and load!"

    Better late than never.

    Well, I have to preface this review with that statement, because, frankly, I've had a LOT of listening in front of me this Christmas season. Not a complaint as much as the cold hard fact of the matter.

    So, let's get started.

    I've already reviewed Larson's "Star Force" series, and I gave it high marks. I bought the entire series, and am working my way through THAT, and then planned to attack this, Larson's latest entry into military scifi.

    To the point, this is an ambitious start to a potentially roller-coaster ride you'll to which you'll want to listen. It's gritty. It's VERY bad-arse. It doesn't waste time on over-complicated character development, and focuses on action, strategy, and storyline. Larson's new series is all about cutting to the chase - You want military scifi? Well lock and load, you're getting an earful.

    I particularly like the pace Larson uses. It's different from "A Hymn Before Battle: Legacy of the Aldenata," another awesome military scifi, by john Ringo, which I've just reviewed. The Aldenate series covers a much broader landscape in the telling, as where here, Larson is more focused on close combat, squad interaction and a smaller cast of characters. Both series work, and frankly, reading either one makes you appreciate the other, because of their "on the mark" writing, despite their core differences.

    The narrator here, Mark Boyett, has done the work well.

    Yes, there are already TONS of spoilers, secrets and giveaways in a good number of Audible reviews. That being said, do you REALLY need to repeat those here? No, of course not.

    So, this is a great start for Larson's new series, and finally, I get to give it a two thumbs up.

    25 of 36 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Roland 07-20-15
    Roland 07-20-15 Member Since 2010
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    "Violence for the sake of violence does not make a good book"

    There were some good ideas for a SF book, but the execution fell sadly short.
    The book consisted only of senselessly battle scene after a senseless battle scene.
    It was fun for a while, but it got boring quite fast.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 02-19-15 Member Since 2014
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    "it's okay"

    narrator was good. story was entertaining, but not too though provoking. I would recommend it.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Terijo AUSTIN, TEXAS, United States 04-14-14
    Terijo AUSTIN, TEXAS, United States 04-14-14 Member Since 2008
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    "very nice military scifi!"
    What made the experience of listening to Steel World the most enjoyable?

    I am not sure why I love military science fiction - but I do - and I enjoyed this one very much. Lots of action and a quirky sense of humor throughout.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Leila Rio de Janeiro, Brazil 02-28-14
    Leila Rio de Janeiro, Brazil 02-28-14 Member Since 2014
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    "Great Military Sci-Fi"
    Would you listen to Steel World again? Why?

    Yes. I'll listen it again before listening to the sequel because I think there is a bigger story arc that will connect all books in the series.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Steel World?

    I was surprised with the awakenings after death, and their emotional consequences.


    Any additional comments?

    The book had a satisfactory ending. I expect that the next books will rise the stakes in the human survival struggles.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Willie bedford, TX, United States 02-25-14
    Willie bedford, TX, United States 02-25-14 Member Since 2014
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    "Highly entertaining, straight forward"
    If you could sum up Steel World in three words, what would they be?

    Just plain fun....Larson doesn't make this a muddled, too many subplots running story. He keeps you on target on the main character, builds solid supporting characters, and doesn't mess around with repetition or unnecessary subplots. You can see this as an action movie, or, dare I say it, a video game-but don't let that turn you off. This is worth it.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Reminded me of Star Ship Troopers but with dinosaurs. The writer gives you enough to invest in the characters and provides great action to keep you listening(or reading).


    Have you listened to any of Mark Boyett’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Haven't heard him before but was very pleased with his performance. Accents a little weak but still a very good job.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    too long for one sitting but high on the re-listening scale


    Any additional comments?

    Not over complicated story and action packed. I would highly recommend this book and am anxiously looking forward to the next book in the series.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Teresa Lakebay, WA, United States 01-31-14
    Teresa Lakebay, WA, United States 01-31-14 Member Since 2011
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    "I Loved This Book"

    This is a great new series. I like the characters, the battles, and the believable science. It's a interesting concept, restoring your soldiers back to life after a really tough battle; kind of like virtual battles with feeling. This book is much better than some of his other series. B.V. Larson's writing skill has really developed. Can't wait to read the next one in the series.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    gerry Saanichton, British Columbia, Canada 01-14-14
    gerry Saanichton, British Columbia, Canada 01-14-14 Member Since 2014

    I read books, fix computers, read books, fix my truck, read books, enjoy time with my wife and kids, and I read books.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "B. V. Larson does it again"

    He started this series as strong as the Star Force books. There were periods where the main people were whinny, but the last third of the book was good. Mark Boyett, as always did a masterful job of telling the story.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
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  • Mr. P. S. Gale
    UK
    1/18/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "If you liked Star Force, you'll love this"

    I've listened to all 8 Star Force books (waiting for no9, the last in that series). That was an excellent series but this is even better. Plenty of action and a fast pace with some interesting tech, moving in a new direction from the Star Force universe.

    Mark Boyett delivers another fantastic performance. Some of the characters sound very similar to those in the Star Force series though but I didn't find that to be an issue.

    I'm very much looking forward to the next instalment - hurry up and write it Mr Larson ;)

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Jaspal
    Solihull, United Kingdom
    3/7/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Reads like a teenager's dream of video games"
    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    I kept getting annoyed with the paper thin characters, the lame obsession with how the main protagonist often finds his eyes wandering when talking to a female character. The comedy galactic aliens.


    Any additional comments?

    I'm all for pot-boiler type action SF and the like but this was weak all the way through.
    Even Jack Campbell's Dauntless series for all its flaws is way better than this.

    12 of 14 people found this review helpful
  • SD MAS
    8/27/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Riveting!"

    A very easy story to get sacked into and once I started it, I just could not stop listening to it.
    The only thing I want to do now is to get the following book...

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mr
    8/11/15
    Overall
    Performance
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    "excellent book"

    This is one of the best books, I've listerned to.
    main character, McCall experience of joining the legion making friends and enemies alike. I'm looking forward to the next book in the series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • M
    Bradford, United Kingdom
    7/30/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Starforce is awesome! I can't get into this series"

    I just couldn't finish this one.

    I like BV Larson. Mark Boyett is a great Narrator. But I just couldn't get into the story.

    I kept thinking give it another hour, give it ANOTHER hour. In the end I gave up.

    I think it was a mixture of the concept behind the story and the characters.

    I will read more BV Larson. Just not anymore of this series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Pixie
    7/26/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "My opinion"

    Really good story the plot seems to be aimed at generation of gamers ie respawning in real life and the mental strain this process creates.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • matt simpson
    7/23/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Like a more serious Starship Troopers"

    Like a more serious Starship Troopers, good description and action of the aliens and planet.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • D. Hale
    England
    7/22/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A great Sci-Fi series begins ......."
    What made the experience of listening to Steel World the most enjoyable?

    The characters very quickly get up to speed and allow you to engage right from the beginning.


    What other book might you compare Steel World to, and why?

    Starship Troopers by Robert A Heinlein has much the same feel and plot development and relationship as the BV Larson series ...... Need I say more??


    Have you listened to any of Mark Boyett’s other performances? How does this one compare?

    No


    Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I laughed in places, no doubt, was intrigued in places .... but also irritated by a couple of characters in places ..... but then that's just because I recognised their real life equivalents .... so cant blame the author for accuracy!!


    Any additional comments?

    I've listened to the next 4 as well, go for it!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Jason 2013
    7/6/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent science fiction and story"

    An eclectic mix of aliens, starship troopers and battle star galactica! Great story, felt I was with the troops shooting the Dinos! Well written and a good listen (good performance) will definitely try some of the other books in the series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Andrew C.
    London, England
    7/4/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Formulaic, by the numbers stuff"

    A juvenile novel without the charm of one of Robert Heinlein's.

    Nonsense technology for reincarnation.

    No need to rewind if you fall asleep before your timer stops it.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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