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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

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (3492 )
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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.

    25 of 30 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 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Matthew 12-26-13
    Matthew 12-26-13 Member Since 2012
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    "Great read"

    I started with reading BV Larsons Swarm series and was only moderately satisfied with it. This new series shows how far BV has come as an author and has a great cast of characters and a strong story throughout.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jonathan montreal, QC, Canada 12-22-13
    Jonathan montreal, QC, Canada 12-22-13 Member Since 2012

    There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate's loot on treasure island.(Walt Disney)

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "very good military sci-fi !"

    this is one of the rare book i could almost finish in one day but enjoy even more if not tired.One of the best combination of author and narrator,mark boyett does well the transition to a bit more serious story(friendship,courage,loyalty).I found it as good if not even better than star force.looking forward to the next book!

    2 of 2 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 31 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael New Orleans, LA 12-16-13
    Michael New Orleans, LA 12-16-13 Member Since 2014
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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 35 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Andy Horton LaVergne, TN, United States 01-22-14
    Andy Horton LaVergne, TN, United States 01-22-14 Member Since 2013
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    "good. solid. Sci-Fi."
    If you could sum up Steel World in three words, what would they be?

    Good Characters, some cheese, a touch predictable but the cool tech makes up for it. I'll continue buying B.V. Larson books as long as he keeps writing.


    6 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    no 12-10-14
    no 12-10-14
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    "Loved it. Immediately purchased the next book"

    Loved it. Immediately purchased the next book in the series. Highly recommend if you like...

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    H. Bozeman Marvin, NC 05-25-14
    H. Bozeman Marvin, NC 05-25-14 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Didn't want it to end!"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I kept coming across this book as I looked for new and different SF titles but I passed it over several times. Mistake. The story was fast-paced and full of action. The writing wasn't deep but if you are looking for futuristic military fiction that keeps you turning the pages...this is it. I have the 2nd book on pre-order and it will be available for purchase on 5/27/2014.


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

    Absolutely. I only regret that I got into this series before Larson had written several stories or completed the series. Now I have to wait for each book to be released.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bob-o CHARLESTON, SC, United States 04-25-14
    Bob-o CHARLESTON, SC, United States 04-25-14 Member Since 2015
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    "Undying Mercenaries says it all."

    If you like B. V. Larson's Star Force series then you will like this one. The story is entertaing and the narration is pretty good. It's hard for me not to say much more without spoiling the book, so enough said...

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • 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
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    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
  • Pixie
    7/26/15
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    "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
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    Performance
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    "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
  • Mr. A. H. Cox
    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
  • Amazon Customer
    Winchester
    6/18/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "brilliant I'm hooked"

    fantastic story. very gripping. looking forward to listening to next book. not had as good a "read" in ages

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • luke
    6/10/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Should I start this series"
    Where does Steel World rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    I like a series to enjoy the immersive continuity. This seems quite light in tone though isn't the worst first in a series effort I've read. Some pleasant steps off the story to highlight or detail some tech or history with characterisation nicely done but perhaps with a little more depth. At around 10-11 hrs its quite a bit shorter than my usual read which kept the pace up, the rambling at minimum and overall a good bit of escape.


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

    It had a feeling of a comic book with more depth. An unusual plot premise that did take me by surprise. Light easy listening science fiction.


    What does Mark Boyett bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

    Mark Boyett has a pleasing repertoire of voice and gave the characters a warmth that wasn't quite as evident in the writing.


    If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    A fight for mankind


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Gary Sereno
    6/9/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Read like the diaries of a soldier, but works well"

    It's an odd one. The story is basic and has a few possible plot holes, but it works. The tale is just from one man from a personal perspective, which could make it one directional, but again it works.

    A certain amount of my liking of this book is the reading of it. Mark Boyett reds it like it's a series of war diaries, making it feel partly like it's a documentary on past events rather than a story in the future. I think with out this I may well have been disappointed.

    I'm looking forwards to the second book, just hoping the story does not lose it's way as I can see limitations in where this tale can go.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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