This seems to be Ian Douglas' new philosophical approach to storytelling in "Earth Strike", which starts a new series in a new fictional universe. ..Show More »
Seriously... The battle starts with the book's opening pages and takes up literally the first half of the book. After that, a short lull as the factions regroup (and we get our only short period of character-building), and then the second battle starts, running all the way till the end.
Does this work? Well, it depends on what you're going for. If you like reading military sci fi simply for the action (or watch movies simply for the mayhem and the explosions) then you will probably dig it. He writes action pretty well. There aren't many new technological ideas involved, rather an amalgamation of different tech and themes common to sci fi. Probably the most stand-out theme is that Douglas has figured out a way to make star fighters important again, giving him the excuse to write a highly "fighter pilot-focused" book. In fact, this book probably has the most starfighter action since the "X-Wing" series, albeit with much more powerful fighters fighting at near-relativistic speeds.
On the other hand, the lack of character development means you don't really engage with any of them that much, and this of course lessens the impact of the fighting itself. If you're hoping for a really deep story, look elsewhere. Furthermore, this imbalance in the time devoted to action vs worldbuilding makes me hesitate to recommend it to military sci fi fans. There are books out there that have the total "package" wrapped much more completely, including, I daresay, the X-Wing series itself.
Overall, this is a light, action-packed story that probably will appeal most to those who are already Ian Douglas fans.
You'll enjoy this one. Same generic plot, same boilerplate characters, same breakneck space battles that are highly entertaining, etc.... However I'..Show More »d say this book is roughly 50% space battle where the first book was 75%. There is a bit more downtime and an attempt to flesh out characters, aliens, and the conflict. A nice attempt, but nothing surprising.
Once again a very decent performance from Nick Sullivan.
Biggest gripe: like the first book, Ian Douglas explains everything over and over and over. How many time do we need explained that a VC-10 CRATE missile has a variable yield warhead and can accelerate at 5000G? Really?
The third book of the series....... Well, I don't want to criticize but it was too anticlimactic for my taste. Perhaps because I expected that..Show More » author will break his compulsion about trilogies and write a few more books. Despite all the facts, I still think that story line has definite continuation, but it's up to author to decide.
Once I start a series I usually stick through to the end. Worse than a long, drawn out series is wondering and not knowing whether things will get bet..Show More »ter. Generally I'll go along with a weak but promising first or second book in a series in hopes of the author and the story developing further.
Unfortunately Star Carrier series never developed. Each book was basically the same formula. Very light on the development of characters, very details on the individual shots of a battle but weak on the overall strategy and progress. Terribly detailed and repetitive in technical descriptions of planets, atmospheres and right or left hand sugars - most of which made zero difference to the story but was repeated often enough to believe something was coming up.
Unfortunately nothing ever came up.
I love sci-fi. I love a good space story especially. If another book comes out in this series I will buy it but my expectations will be quite low.
In the same category of military sci-fi give The Lost Fleet by John G. Henry a try. It's still not the drama of Orson Scott Card or the willd rides of Larry Niven but it is good listening. Something on the fantasy side (I do not believe fantasy and sci-fi are one in the same) you need to give Jim Butcher's Dresden Files a shot. An excellent series!